The H1-C visa is for registered nurses to work temporarily in the United States. This visa category was created in 1999 to address the shortage of nurses in the United States. The process to obtain an H1-C visa is two steps, coordinating with the U.S. Department of Labor and with USCIS.
H1-C visas are issued for 3 years at most. Spouses and children of H1-C visa holders may also obtain United States visas under the H-4 classification.
Only 500 H1-C visas are issued each year.
To be an eligible for an H1-C visa you must meet the following requirements:
· Be a registered nurse in the country where you received your nursing education or have received your nursing education and license in the United States
· Be authorized to practice nursing by the U.S. State Board of Nursing in the state where you plan to live and work
· Be a registered nurse in the state where you plan to live and work OR have passed the nursing exam given by the Commission on Graduates for Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS)
To obtain an H1-C Visa:
1. Have your United States employer petition for you by filing Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker.
a. Your employer must have obtained a notice of acceptance of the attestation for H-1C Nonimmigrant Nurses from the Department of Labor.
b. Collect supporting documents which must be included with the petition. These documents include: the Department of Labor attestation, Form ETA-9081; evidence that you will be authorized by the State Board of Nursing; evidence that you are a Registered Nurse of have passed the exam given by the Commission on Graduates for Foreign Nursing Schools; evidence of you qualifying nursing education and licensure.
2. Apply for a visa with your local U.S. embassy or consulate by filing form DS-156, Nonimmigrant Visa Application. Include the original approval of notice, Form I-797, Notice of Action, that you will have received from your employer upon acceptance of Form I-129.
3. Form DS-157, Supplemental Nonimmigrant Visa Application, is required for all male nonimmigrant visa applicants between the ages of 16 and 45.
4. Attend a visa interview.
5. Travel to the United States.