While all types of jobs are important, U.S. immigration law prioritizes the need for foreign nurses. In doing so, the U.S. provides various options for foreign nurses to obtain temporary work visas and permanent residence here in the U.S. A nationwide shortage of nurses has encouraged the U.S. to incentivize more foreign nurses to provide their expertise here. An immigration attorney can give you more information about how you as a foreign nurse, or as a representative of a business who wishes to hire a foreign nurse should proceed to take full advantage of these rules.
In order to work in the U.S. temporarily, a foreign nurse will need to obtain an H-1B visa; a popular temporary work visa for foreign nationals with job offers for positions that the U.S. considers “specialty occupations.” The starting point for an application for an H-1B visa would be to file an I-129 petition with USCIS (the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services). The burden would be on the potential employer to show that the nursing position is a “specialty occupation.” This is a four-part test that includes factors such as:
The employer would only have to show that one of these is met. It is not enough to simply show that the prospective employee has a bachelor’s or master’s degree; you must show that the job requires one. For nursing positions that require shorter certifications without a bachelor’s degree, it will be difficult for an employer to prove that it is a “specialized occupation.”
In the U.S. a foreign nurse’s employer can also sponsor them for a green card, but only after first offering the nurse a full-time, permanent nurse position. After this, the employer would complete the labor certification process (PERM), which is different for nursing positions than for others. With regard to this process, a nursing position is a “Schedule A” position, meaning that it has been recognized in the U.S. as a position that we need more workers for. This label allows an employer to skip a few steps that are usually required for the labor certification process:
After the 9089 form was approved, the employer can file the I-140 petition and the foreign nurse can then get a green card so long as no wait has been imposed.
While it may seem difficult determining how to properly hire a foreign nurse here in the United States, it does not have to be. Kriezelman Burton & Associates knows how to best ensure that a foreign nurse or other foreign worker is able to be properly admitted into the U.S. to do their job. Contact us today for help ensuring that the process is done as efficiently and correctly as possible.
How did we do?
Note: Your review may be shared publicly.
As we respond to the current events surrounding COVID-19, the health and safety of our clients and staff remains paramount. Effective March 21, 2020 until April 7, 2020, we remain open for business, as an essential service per Governor Pritzker’s March 20, 2020 “Stay at Home” Executive Order. However, we are temporarily suspending in-person client services at our office. Instead, we are offering user-friendly web-based video conferencing and regular teleconference appointments. The video conferencing feature is simple to use for those with internet access and comes at no extra charge to our clients -- we encourage its use whenever possible.
Please contact your attorney to set this up via email or call us at 312-332-2550 to set up a video conferencing consultation.
The KB&A Team