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Criminal Background Check-Live Scan

As required by the North Carolina Nursing Practice Act, applicants for nurse licensure as specified below are required to undergo a fingerprint-based State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) criminal history check:

  • Applicant Seeking Licensure by Examination (NCLEX)
  • Applicants Seeking Licensure by Endorsement (Reciprocity)
  • Applicants Seeking Reinstatement of a North Carolina license (expired 6 months or longer)
Prior Criminal Convictions

If you have prior criminal convictions (misdemeanors and/or felonies) regardless of the age of conviction, you must submit the following to the Board of Nursing:

  • Original Certified Court Documents for all Convictions (Misdemeanors or Felonies); and
  • A detailed explanation of the events leading to the arrest and any other pertinent details if the conviction occurred within the last 5 years or if you're reporting a Felony conviction regardless of when it occurred

The Board of Nursing may deny an applicant based on a conviction of a crime only if the board finds that the applicant's criminal conviction history is directly related to the duties and responsibilities for the licensed occupation, or the conviction is for a crime that is violent or sexual in nature. The Board of Nursing must specifically consider the following factors by law when denying an applicant for licensure due to a criminal conviction:

  1. The level and seriousness of the crime.
  2. The date of the crime.
  3. The age of the person at the time of the crime.
  4. The circumstances surrounding the commission of the crime, if known.
  5. The nexus between the criminal conduct and the prospective duties of the applicant as a licensee.
  6. The prison, jail, probation, parole, rehabilitation, and employment records of the applicant since the date the crime was committed.
    1. The completion of, or active participation in, rehabilitative drug or alcohol treatment.
    2. A Certificate of Relief granted pursuant to G.S. 15A-173.2.
  7. The subsequent commission of a crime by the applicant.
  8. Any affidavits or other written documents, including character references.

Applicant’s denied licensure in whole or in part because of a criminal conviction have the right to appeal the decision of the Board within 30 days after receipt of the Board’s decision to the superior court located in the county where the applicant resides or where the Board is located pursuant to NC. Gen. Stat §90-171.37B(a) and §150B-43 et al .

Within North Carolina

Live Scan is digital fingerprinting and transmission of the impression directly to the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for processing. If you are within North Carolina, use Live Scan to obtain and transmit your digital fingerprints electronically to the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

How to submit...

The background check application is completed within the initial application process.

Fee Information: $38.00 


Valid Forms of Payment:

  • Credit or Debit Card; MasterCard or Visa only

Next, access, print and sign your Live Scan Application forms which include (1) 'Electronic Fingerprint Submission Release of Information' and (2) 'Applicant Information'

To retrieve your forms, select the Get Forms button located on the Criminal Background check tile.

Call your local Sheriff office in order to confirm they are able to complete the Live Scan process or if they are able to refer you to another location. Take both of your printed and signed Live Scan Application forms to your local Sheriff office. The law enforcement personnel will obtain and transmit your fingerprints via Live Scan directly to the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI). Upload your signed copy of the release form in your gateway account once fingerprinting is completed. The Sheriff’s office does NOT submit the form to us.

The forms are NOT editable once submitted. Please answer all questions carefully. If you discover an error once the forms are generated simply cross out the incorrect information and write in the corrected information. The forms are there to assist law enforcement with completing the fingerprinting process.

Please reach out to with any questions or concerns.

Results of your Criminal Background Check cannot be processed until the signed and dated Electronic Fingerprint Submission Release of Information form is received in the Board of Nursing office. The background check results cannot be released to the applicant or to any other agency. They can be used only for the NC nurse licensure process.

Nurse Gateway

Outside of North Carolina

If you reside in another state or country, a hard copy of fingerprints will be required on an official fingerprint card. Fingerprinting must be performed by authorized fingerprinting personnel. Contact your local fingerprinting agency for assistance and additional details. Electronic transmission of fingerprints cannot be received from outside of NC law enforcement. There are no service codes available for Live Scan agencies, but most can provide a digital printout onto a fingerprint card which will need to be mailed in for processing. The card must be MAILED in, unfolded, to the address provided on your background check forms. 

Fee Information: $38.00 (processed within the initial licensure application)


Valid Forms of Payment:

  • Credit or Debit Card; MasterCard or Visa only

Frequently Asked Questions

Last Changed 15-Aug-2022

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(919) 782-3211
(919) 781-9461
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North Carolina Board of Nursing