State Bill

New York Preliminary License Application Navigation (“PLAN”) 

"Having a pre-application process would have been extremely helpful for me as I pursue a license in social work. I was passionate about social work because of my experience with the criminal justice system. I paid a lot of money to go to Fordham School of Social Work, and paid for the licensing test, which I took in 2021. I’m still waiting to hear from the board about whether my license will be granted. There is no clarity on the website and I’ve called many times and haven’t gotten answers. If there had been a pre-application process I could have known whether my conviction would disqualify me from getting a social work license and the lengthy process to appeal the denial of my license BEFORE I invested all the time and money in it."

Sister Eli, Women’s Community Justice Association Justice4Women Task Force



Barber. Social worker. Nurse. Contractor. 1 in 4 jobs requires a professional license. For people in reentry, occupational licenses provide a crucial path to steady work for fair pay. But for the millions of applicants with a history of justice involvement, the process of applying for a professional license can be far more complicated.


The Invisible Wall

Currently, licensing bodies aren’t required to publicize whether they consider conviction history when evaluating a license application. That means that someone can invest years and thousands of dollars in education and training, sit for a licensing exam, fill out an application—and only then find out that their conviction history may bar them from holding a license. Others are subject to a lengthy, open-ended review process, in which their license applications may be stalled for months or even years.


The PLAN Act gives justice-involved New Yorkers a fair chance at professional licensing.

The bill creates a simple pre-application process that applicants can use to determine whether their conviction history might impact their license application—before investing time and money in education and training. Not only that, it requires licensing bodies to publicize whether they consider conviction history when issuing licenses, and to offer a straightforward appeals process if an application is rejected because of conviction history. Finally, the PLAN Act puts an end to the extended limbo of reviews by requiring licensing bodies to review preapplications and appeals in a timely manner.


The PLAN Act helps every New Yorker.

It increases New York’s skilled workforce in fields where we’re grappling with critical labor shortages. It lowers the chances of reoffense by giving New Yorkers with criminal convictions a clearer path to steady, living-wage jobs.


Let’s get PLAN passed this session!

PLAN is through committee in the Senate, and ready for the floor vote. But it’s still sitting with the Assembly Corrections Committee. Contact your Assembly Member and tell them to support the PLAN Act and help it pass this session! 


Read the full text of the bill:

Senate Bill S3250 

Assembly Bill A4893 

Sign on To Support the Bill


Supporting Organizations:










The Alliance of Families for Justice

Justice 4 Women Taskforce

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