Bill Would Help Professional Licensed Spouses Return to Work Sooner After Relocation
(TRENTON) — The Assembly on Monday approved legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Cleopatra Tucker, Troy Singleton, Timothy Eustace, Pamela Lampitt, Lou Greenwald and John Wisniewski that would allow nonresident military spouses to seek temporary licensure from certain professional and occupations licensing boards upon moving to New Jersey.
The bill (A-3427) would provide a “nonresident military spouse” an opportunity to seek a one-year temporary licensure with option to apply for an extension at the end of the year. Under the bill, a “nonresident military spouse” is defined as a spouse of an active duty member of the U.S. Armed Forces who has been transferred to the state or has moved to the state on a permanent change-of-station basis. Nine states have passed and signed into law similar legislation.
“This is an opportunity for the state to help military families bridge the employment gap when transferred and see little disruption in earning an income for their family,” said Tucker (D-Essex). “In a year or two-year time, if the individual has permanently relocated to New Jersey, this temporary license will give them time to seek permanent licensure while continuing to make a living.”
“Frequent relocation is a part of military life. New Jersey understands that,” said Singleton (D- Burlington). “The bill would help ease transitions for nonmilitary spouses with licensed professional careers by providing an opportunity to continue to do what they are trained for, earn an income and support their families.
“The legislation is consistent with legislative efforts being made in other states across the nation,” said Eustace (D-Bergen, Passaic). “New Jersey should make it easier for qualified military spouses to maintain licensure and pursue employment quickly after relocation.”
“A military family depending on two incomes to support their household does not deserve to encounter trouble in securing employment, especially, if the spouse is a licensed professional,” said Lampitt (D- Camden/Burlington). “This bill will help smooth their transition to New Jersey and make it easier to continue to support their family.”
“The sacrifices of our military troops are also made by the people who love them, their family,” said Greenwald (D- Camden/Burlington). “Relocating often can be hectic and disconcerting for many in the military. New Jersey should help simplify the job aspect of the transition so they may continue to support their families without too much interference.”
“Finding work in this economy is hard enough. Doing so in a new state makes the process that much more difficult,” said Wisniewski (D-Middlesex). “Relocating at a moment’s notice is just one of the many sacrifices that our military families make for our country. The least we can do is make the job hunt easier so they can provide for their families as they settle into their new homes.”
A nonresident military spouse qualifies for temporary licensure, under the bill, if they meet the following requirements: currently holds a license to practice in another jurisdiction or state, was actively engaged in their practice, holds a clean professional record as per criminal background and review of credentials; remits fee for issuance of licensing; and complies with any other requirements of the licensure board.
The bill was approved 74-0 by the Assembly and now heads to the Senate for further consideration