Nursing Specialty Workers (H1B H-1B)

USCIS Reaches H-1B Cap for Fiscal 2005

USCIS announced, at approximately 8:00 pm on October 1, 2004, the first day of fiscal year 2005, that it has enough H-1Bs in the pipeline to meet the fy 2005 cap. All cap-subject cases received after the end of the business day October 1 will be returned.

Click here for additional information from the USCIS.

CIS Reports on Total H-1B Usage for FY 2003

An October 22, 2003 CIS Fact Sheet reports on total H-1B usage for FY 2003, including the number of petitions filed, as well as the number of petitions approved for both continuing and initial employment.

Click here to read the H-1B fact sheet in its entirety.

News on H-1B Visa Senate Hearings (via IDG News Service)

At a Senate hearing, officials from two companies said a planned reduction in the number of H-1B visas that can be issued to foreign workers could make it harder to fill IT jobs. But the president-elect of the IEEE’s U.S. chapter called for longer-term solutions to the lack of qualified workers. (Sep. 22, 2003)

In other news from the Senate Hearing, Officials from Intel and Ingersoll-Rand say more H-1B visas are needed to fill technical positions when the companies can’t find qualified U.S. candidates. (Sep. 17, 2003)

Click here to read the special H-1B coverage from the IDG News Service.

Final Regulation on NIV Certification (185K .PDF file) of Foreign Health Care Workers (September 22, 2003)

Memorandum from BCIS (145K .PDF file) on “The Guidance on Adjudication of H-1B Petitions Filed on Behalf of Nurses.

BCIS Announces Latest H1-B Petition Statistics (87Kb) for FY 2003

Overview of H-1B Temporary Work Visa for Nurses

The H-1B categories apply to aliens coming temporarily to perform services in a specialty occupation, or as a fashion model of distinguished merit and ability. The FY2001, 2002, and 2003 cap on H1-B admissions was 195,000 workers.

Nurses can qualify for H-1B status, however, the the nursing occupation must be one that requires the equivalent of a four-year U.S. baccalaureate degree (See BCIS memorandum above). Nurses in highly complex and specialized areas will oftentimes qualify as will nurses in management and leadership positions.

Labor Condition Application

The first step to hiring most H-1B nurses from outside the U.S. is for the employer to file a labor condition application (LCA) with the Department of Labor (DOL). Then the employer is required to file the LCA approval notice with the Petition for Alien Worker.

Some terms and conditions of the H-1B classification:

Work authorization for H-1B foreign specialty nursing workers is employer-specific (i.e. limited to employment with the approved employer/petitioner);

A change of employer requires a new H-1B petition; under some circumstances, a nonimmigrant who was previously issued an H1-B visa or provided H1-B nonimmigrant status may begin working for a new H1-B employer as soon as the new employer files a “nonfrivolous” H1-B petition for the nonimmigrant;

Multiple employers require multiple H-1B petitions;

The employer is responsible for return transportation costs for an employee terminated prior to the end of the approved period of employment;

H-1B foreign specialty workers are not required to maintain foreign residence and may seek permanent residence in the U.S.

Nurse’s Dependents

Dependents (spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age) of H-1B workers are entitled to H-4 status with the same restrictions as the principal. Dependents may not be employed under the H-4 classification;

Including more than one worker in a petition: Each petition may only include one worker.

H-1B1 Nursing Specialty Occupations

The H-1B1 category applies to an alien nurse coming temporarily to perform services in a specialty nursing occupation which requires the theoretical and practical application of highly specialized knowledge requiring completion of a specific course of higher education.

Document Requirements for H-1B Classification Petition

The petition should be filed by the U.S. employer with:

– A certified labor condition application from the Department of Labor;
– Copies of evidence that the proposed employment qualifies as a specialty occupation;
Evidence the alien has the required degree by submitting either:

– A copy of the person’s U.S. baccalaureate or higher degree which is required by the specialty occupation;
– A copy of a foreign degree determined to be equivalent to the U.S. degree; or
– Copies of evidence of education and experience which is equivalent to the required U.S. degree;
– A copy of any required license or other official permission to practice the occupation in the state of intended employment; and
– A copy of any written contract between the employer and the alien or a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the alien will be employed.

Petition Document Requirements

The Petition for Alien Worker must be filed by the U.S. employer and must be filed with:

– A description of the proposed employment and evidence the services and project meet the above conditions; and
– A statement listing the names of all aliens who are not permanent residents who have been employed on the project within the past year, along with their dates of employment.
Petition Document Requirements

The Petition for Alien Worker should be filed by the U.S. employer with:

– A certified labor condition application from the Department of Labor;
– Copies of evidence establishing that the alien is nationally or internationally recognized in the field of fashion modeling. The evidence must include at least two of the following types of documentation which show that the person:
– Has achieved national or international recognition in his or her field as evidenced by major newspaper, trade journals, magazines or other published material;
– Has performed and will perform services as fashion model for employers with a distinguished reputation;
– Has received recognition for significant achievements from organizations, critics, fashion houses, modeling agencies or other recognized experts in the field; and
– Commands a high salary or other substantial remuneration for services, as shown by contracts or other reliable evidence.
Copies of evidence establishing that the services to be performed require a fashion model of distinguished merit and ability and either:

– Involve an event or production which has a distinguished reputation; or
– The services are as participant for an organization or establishment that has a distinguished reputation or record of employing persons of distinguished merit and ability.

How Can I Check the Status of My Application?

Click on the menu button to the left, labeled “Check Case Status” and enter your file number.