50-State Engineering Licensing Compliance Guide
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Nuclear Engineering License

Learn how to obtain and maintain a nuclear engineering firm license.

What Is Nuclear Engineering?

Nuclear engineering firms develop and maintain atomic equipment like radiation shields, reactor cores, and devices and equipment needed to operate and monitor nuclear equipment. As the owner or operator of a nuclear engineering firm, you can expect the following types of tasks and responsibilities:

  • Nuclear criticality, kinetics, and neutrons
  • Nuclear fuel cycle fuel design and analysis
  • Nuclear fuel cycling handling, shipping, and storage
  • Nuclear power systems components and systems
  • Nuclear power systems design and analysis
  • Nuclear power systems regulations, codes, and standards
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Running a Nuclear Engineering Firm

Practicing nuclear engineering is inherently complex, so owners of firms need to ensure they abide by state and local requirements when registering and expanding their businesses. Requirements revolve around training and experience, the business registration and licensing process, insurance, and continuing education.

Training and Experience

Nuclear engineering is a complex field that requires extensive education and training. While state requirements vary, most individuals looking to start a nuclear engineering firm will need the following:

  • A degree from an Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology-accredited (ABET) engineering program
  • A passing score on the Principles and Practice of Engineering Nuclear Exam
  • Relevant work experience for at least four years
  • A passing score on the Fundamentals of Engineering Exam for Nuclear Engineers

Once you have the necessary credentials to start a nuclear engineering firm, you can register your business with the state and apply for the required licensing. You may only need a general engineering license in some states, while others require nuclear-specific licenses. You also have the option to pursue additional certifications to expand your knowledge of the industry.

Licensure and Business Registration

The process to register your business will depend on your state’s requirements. In general, you will go through the following steps:

  • Research your state’s business registration and licensing requirements.
  • Choose your business name and entity structure.
  • Obtain a federal tax identification number from the Internal Revenue Service and register with the secretary of state.
  • Obtain necessary types of insurance, including general liability, commercial auto, and workers’ compensation.
  • Research license and registration renewal requirements to keep your business compliant.

Licensing requirements for nuclear engineering companies vary by state. It is essential to verify the process in your state to ensure you are prepared every step of the way. You will likely need to gather all relevant documentation, including financial statements, proof of a commercial activity license, a business plan, and more. You will also need to appoint a registered agent to receive notices of lawsuits and other legal or government notices.

After your license has been issued, you will receive notice to pay any related balance. If the application is not approved, you will receive notice regarding what is missing or required.


As with any other engineering field, nuclear engineering is inherently dangerous. To protect your business, it is essential to have a risk management plan in the form of insurance. Proof of insurance is also often required when applying for licensing. The most common insurance policies nuclear engineering companies adopt include the following:

  • General liability - covers bodily injury, care, custody, and control coverage, errors and omissions endorsement
  • Automobile liability insurance - insures property damage, bodily injury
  • Workers’ compensation - covers bodily injury within the scope and course of employment
  • Umbrella liability - this in-house binding authority combines the policies discussed above up to $10,000,000
  • Crime policy - protects business assets in the event of criminal activity

What is best for your business depends on your location and the types of services you provide. Contact an insurance specialist to learn about your options.

Continuing Education

Some states require continuing education credits in engineering throughout the years you operate the business. This ensures business owners and employees keep up with new regulations, engineering methods, and more. The amount and frequency of training required varies by state.

At Harbor Compliance, our Entity Manager software simplifies accurate due date tracking and facilitates on-time filing. This way, your business will continue to be compliant with state and local requirements, and you will have the time you need to continue working and expanding your clientele.

Maintaining and Renewing Licensure as a Nuclear Engineer

No matter what stage you are in with your business, you need to maintain your license’s status. State requirements vary, but renewals are often required annually or biennially. You may need to submit a renewal application, pay a renewal fee, or pursue continuing education. Complying with renewal requirements will ensure you can continue to operate your business without disruption.

Keeping on track with your business’s license renewals can be complicated, especially as a growing company. At Harbor Compliance, our managed annual reporting and registered agent services ensure accurate due date tracking and on-time filing. This way, your business will continue to be compliant with state and local requirements, and you will have the time you need to continue working and expanding your clientele.

If you are currently operating a nuclear engineering firm and are looking to outsource your maintenance and renewal duties, Harbor Compliance can help. We are available to review your business status, ensure you are in good standing in the state where you operate, and explain what steps you need to take to ensure you remain compliant with state and federal regulations.

Explore Licensing by State

Click on a link below to view licensing information in your state.

Meeting the nuclear engineering license requirements is not always an easy process. Fortunately, Harbor Compliance License Manager helps construction professionals maintain their licenses by automating repetitive tasks such as tracking renewals. Through License Manager, you can also access Compliance Core™ - our extensive, proprietary database of nationwide licensing information - to research the requirements for the states in which you work. These tools reduce the time you spend researching state requirements and prepare your organization for success. Contact our licensing experts today to learn more.

Design Firm - Engineering firm registration is sometimes grouped with architecture and land surveying on a single “design firm” application form.

EI (Engineering Intern) - A term also used to describe an Engineer in Training.

EIT (Engineer in Training) - A professional designation granted upon having completed at least 3 years of school at an ABET-accredited university and having passed the FE exam.

FE (Fundamentals of Engineering) - An exam testing on basic engineering principles that is required to become an engineer in training.

PE (Professional Engineer or 'Principles and Practice in Engineering') - Means either Professional Engineer or refers to the Principles and Practice in Engineering exam that is a prerequisite for an engineering license.

Reciprocity - When a licensed engineer in one state can provide documentation (often an NCEES Record) to more easily apply for a license in another jurisdiction.

Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET)
Accrediting board that sets standards for university programs in a variety of applied science disciplines.

American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC)
Engineering, architecture, and land surveying advocacy group.

American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
Organization that provides continuing education, professional conferences, and advocacy efforts to the civil engineering community.

American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
Mechanical engineering organization that focuses on education and professional development.

Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC)
Reviews accreditation requirements and makes final decisions regarding the accreditation process.

National Council of Examiners for Engineering & Surveying (NCEES)
Develops, administers, and scores the exams used for engineering licenses.

National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE)
NSPE is an advocacy group for professional engineers.