H-1C Visa for Nurses

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What is an H-1C Visa Work Permit?

An H-1C visa is for nurses who wish to work in health professional shortage areas.  The H-1C visa is based on the the former H-1A category for nurses (which expired on September 30, 1997) and was created to address spot labor shortages in the nursing field.  Laws limit the number of H-1C visas issued to 500 annually.  A nurse may practice in the U.S. for three years and the visa may not be extended.

What are the Requirements for Obtaining an H-1C Visa?

To qualify for an H-1C visa, you must first meet the following requirements:

You may satisfy the H-1C requirements by obtaining a certified statement from the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS), or by obtaining certification from an independent credentialing organization approved by the Attorney General and the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services; and by passing the National Council Licensure Examination for registered nurses (NCLEX-RN) examination.

How Can I Hire Foreign Workers Using an H-1C Visa?

An employer wishing to hire a foreign nurse using an H-1C visa must file an attestation with the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) of the U.S. Department of Labor.  You must indicate the following:

Do I Need an Attorney to Get an H-1C Visa?

Regardless of whether you are an employer or a foreign nurse, applying for an H-1C visa can be complicated.  An experienced immigration lawyer can help you determine your eligibility and can recommend what steps you need to take.  Similarly, an attorney will be able to discuss alternative options with you.

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Last Modified: 06-28-2012 11:50 AM PDT

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