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How to bring RN’s into the U.S.


Ways to bring RN’s into the U.S.

Question: I am a Registered Nurse and I don’t know how to come into the U.S. Can you help?

Answer: Primarily, the best way to come into the United States as a Registered Nurse is through the normal I-140 Schedule A process. This is whereby an RN submits everything necessary to eventually obtain residency.

Question: How long does it take?

Answer: It is now taking years for the visa number to become current. It is unfortunate, but it is taking much longer than in prior years. Professional nurses and physical therapists who are in the United States and eligible to file for adjustment of status are able to file their I-485 and ancillary applications concurrently with the I-140 immigrant visa petition as long as their priority date is current. The priority date for a professional nurse or a physical therapist is established when a complete I-140 immigrant visa petition is received by the USCIS service center. Unfortunately, professional nurses in jobs that require only two years of nursing training fall under the third preference category for Skilled Workers. This three– to seven-year visa retrogression has exacerbated the immediate need for qualified registered nurses nationwide.

Question: Can a Registered Nurse come into the United States on an H-1B?

Answer: Most foreign nurses do not qualify for an H-1B visa unless they are certified advanced practice registered nurses (APRN) or upper-level nurse managers

Question: Are there other types of temporary visas that Registered Nurses can come into the United States?

Answer: The Treaty NAFTA (TN) visa remains an option for Canadian and Mexican citizens. Many people have immigrated previously to Canada to become nurses and still want to come to the United States. After they become a Canadian Citizen, they can certainly take advantage of the TN Visa.

Question: What is needed in the I-140 application for an RN to apply for residency?

Answer: (1) Form I-140 Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, along with evidence that the petitioning employer has the financial ability to pay the salary offered; (2) PERM Labor Certification Application Form ETA 9089 in duplicate; (3) Prevailing wage determination; (4) Posting notice; (5) Proof that the alien applicant possesses all the qualifications necessary to take the licensing examination; and (6) Degree, diploma and transcript.

Question: What is the Visa Screen?

Answer: The VisaScreen certificate verifies that the foreign health care worker’s education, training, licensing, experience, and English competency are comparable to American health care workers. VisaScreen Certificates must be presented at the I-485 stage for applicants in the United States or at the consular interview for candidates who immigrant visa process at a U.S. consular post abroad.

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