New Bill Could Change Background Checks for Nurses in Colorado

By Michael Klazema on 1/22/2018
A new bill pending in Colorado could change the way the state looks at background checks for registered nurses. Per a report from, Colorado’s House Finance Committee recently met to discuss joining a multi-state agreement called the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (or eNLC). The agreement is a coalition of states that lets nurses work across state lines without having to go through additional background checks or licensure processes.

Per coverage, Colorado is already part of the original Nursing Licensure Compact (NLC), which was implemented in 1999. The NLC had the same stated goal as the eNLC: fostering greater interstate flexibility for nurses. However, the legislation did not bring about completely standardized licensure requirements across all the states in the Compact. Instead, states retained “different statutory and rule requirements,” according to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN). Nurses wishing to relocate to new states within the Compact had to complete additional steps to get licensed.

Reports explain that by eliminating unique requirements across associated states, the new Compact brings the United States one step closer to a true standardized nursing licensure process. Once a nurse is licensed, he or she can provide care in any of the states in the Compact without having to obtain a new license.

There are several uniform licensure requirements every nurse in the eNLC must follow to obtain a multi-state license, coverage notes. Every applicant must pass both state and federal fingerprint criminal checks. Any applicants with felony convictions on their records—at the state or federal level—will be disqualified. Candidates are not allowed to have any misdemeanor convictions “related to the practice of nursing.” The NCSBN assures that all misdemeanors will be judged on a case-by-case basis.

The eNLC has officially been active in the United States since July 2017 when the 26th state joined. All nurses that are already a part of the original NLC are grandfathered in with the eNLC, reports confirm. These nurses will not need to go through additional background checks to be a part of the eNLC. In Colorado, there are 86,000 nurses who meet this benchmark. Before these nurses are grandfathered in to the eNLC, the Colorado legislature must vote to join the Compact.

State legislators have already voted once not to join the eNLC, reports note. However, that vote saw the provisions regarding the Compact bundled with an overarching healthcare bill. Many Republican lawmakers voted against that packaged bill because they claimed it overreached. Now that the eNLC will be voted on as a standalone piece of legislation, administrators predict a different outcome.

Industry News

Tag Cloud
Recent Posts

Latest News

  • March 22 Countrywide, states and local municipalities have committed to ban the box legislation, seeking to equalize opportunities in the job market for those with criminal histories.
  • March 22

    Thinking about becoming a firefighter? Here are some of the background check requirements you might face.

  • March 20

    Four Department of Commerce employees are out after their background checks resulted in security clearance denials. All four had worked high-ranking positions for months despite incomplete background checks.

  • March 15 As more states legalize the recreational use of cannabis, they contend with the emergence of new industries surrounding marijuana cultivation and production. 
  • March 14 In most cases, it is easy to determine where an issue might show up on a pre-employment background check. Citations for traffic violations or reckless driving charges will appear on a motor vehicle record check. Verdicts in a civil court case will show on a civil court background check. And criminal convictions—from petty theft to violent felonies—show up on criminal background checks.
  • March 13 How many years back do employment background checks go? This question can have multiple different answers depending on the situation.
  • March 13 A new bill in Florida would require landlords of apartment complexes to present tenants with verifications of employee background checks to give them peace of mind the people working in and around their homes are trustworthy.
  • March 08 Police officers working with the University of Texas at Arlington recently arrested a man who had avoided police capture on a warrant out of Oregon for nearly two decades. The man, whose real name is Daniel Charles Ray Hanson, spent those 17 years using a variety of fake names and identification documents to move around the country, often engaging with educational institutions under false pretenses. Police say Hanson regularly went by at least three different aliases. He sports a rap sheet that stretches back to an arson conviction in 1995. 
  • March 07

    The Future of EEOC Guidance in Texas Is Up in the Air

    The EEOC issued guidance in 2012 warning employers about the dangers of enforcing categorical policies to bar candidates with criminal histories. That guidance is not enforceable in Texas thanks to a recent court ruling.

  • March 05 Vermont is the latest state to restrict employers’ access to and use of social media accounts of employees and applicants.