Nigeria - Country Commercial Guide
Licensing Requirements for Professional Services

Includes license requirements for key professional services that are open to U.S. service providers.

Last published date: 2021-10-13

Medical Professionals

The medical and dental professions in Nigeria are regulated by the Medical and Dental Practitioners Act Cap 221 (now Cap M8) Laws of Federation of Nigeria 1990, which sets up the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria as the medical regulatory body of the country.

Foreign medical graduates must sit for and pass the MDCN Assessment Examination to be eligible to practice in Nigeria.  Foreign medical graduates must show evidence from the health regulatory bodies of the countries where they were trained that they are qualified to be registered and could have practiced in those countries if they had wanted to do so.

Engineering Professionals

The Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN) provides engineers with the license to practice in Nigeria. A previous requirement from COREN mandated registration with the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE) as a prerequisite for obtaining a COREN license. However, this prerequisite has been expunged from the new regulations even though in practice, an application to COREN without the NSE endorsement might be rejected.

Architects

The Architects Registration Council of Nigeria (ARCON) regulates practice of architecture in Nigeria.  Foreign architects working in Nigeria must have a Nigerian architect as the lead consultant.

Lawyers

The Council of Legal Education is the supervisory body responsible for the accreditation, control and management of legal education in Nigeria.  The Council of Legal Education runs the Nigerian Law School.  Foreign qualified lawyers wishing to re-qualify to practice law in Nigeria must successfully complete the six months Bar Part 1 course and the one-year Bar Part 2 course at the Nigerian Law School to obtain a Bachelor of Laws and be called to the Nigerian Bar.  The laws in Nigeria limit eligibility for requalification to holders of qualifications from common law jurisdictions.

Accountants and Auditors

There are three Nigerian professional accounting bodies recognized by law, namely; Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), Association of National Accountants of Nigeria (ANAN), and Chartered Institute of Management of Nigeria (CIMA).  Currently, ICAN grants all members of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) full membership after undergoing a special intensive course.