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Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration

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  1. H-1B Cap Update: Fewer than 15,000 H-1B visas remaining

    by , 12-01-2010 at 06:41 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    by Chris Musillo


    As of November 26, 2010, approximately 50,400 H-1B cap-subject petitions were receipted. Additionally, USCIS has receipted 18,400 H-1B petitions for aliens with advanced degrees. There are 65,000 "regular" cap-subject visas and 20,000 "advanced degree" H-1Bs".


    Historically, as the H-1B usage number has gotten closer to 65,000, the number of filings increases. Accordingly, MU urges all MU to prepare that the H-1B cap will be reached in January 2010, and may even be reached by year's end.
    The H-1B is the common employment-based nonimmigrant visa. The H-1B is a common visa for healthcare professionals such as Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Language Pathologists,some nursing positions, and other professions ordinarily associated with a Bachelors degree or greater. The H-1B traditionally has been in great demand by the IT community.
    Generally speaking "new" H-1B petitions are subject to the H-1B cap. Employees that may need an H-1B visa include:

    - International students working on an EAD card under an OPT or CPT program after having attended a U.S. school;
    - International employees working on a TN may need an H-1B filed for them in order for them to pursue a permanent residency (green card) case;
    - Prospective international employees in another visa status e.g. H-4, L-2, J-1, F-1;- H-1B workers with a cap exempt organization; and
    - Prospective international employees currently living abroad.

    International workers who are working here in the U.S. on an H-1B visa with another cap-subject employer are not subject to H-1B cap. These cases are commonly referred to as "transfer" cases and may be filed at any time throughout the year.


    Read the full Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com.

     
  2. The future of nursing and the H-1B

    by , 11-22-2010 at 09:32 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)

    by Chris Musillo

    H-1B visas for nurses can be difficult, although many are approved each year. The key driver for success is not the applicant's credentials, but the hospital/facility's educational entry requirements for the position. In order to obtain an H-1B visa, the position must require a Bachelors degree as the minimum educational requirement for the position.

    The USCIS has struggled with this concept; they tend to be skeptical of H-1Bs for nurses. The seminal USCIS Guidance Memo was written in 2002, and has not been updated to account for the fact that many hospitals and facilities now require a Bachelors degree for all of their nurses. This is especially true in certain units and in magnet facilities.

    The New York Times says that about 50% of all nurses hold a Bachelors degree. It should not come as a surprise to the USCIS that the Bachelors degree requirement increasingly is becoming the norm. The Johnson Foundation, long on the cutting edge of nursing educational studies, is cited in the Times piece. JF contends that growing that number to 80% is a realistic and worthwhile goal. As the number of Bachelor degreed nurses swells, the H-1B likely will become even a more viable immigration strategy.

    Read the full Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com.
  3. December 2010 Visa Bulletin

    by , 11-15-2010 at 07:37 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
     



    by Chris Musillo


    The Department of State has just released the December 2010 Visa Bulletin, which is the third Visa Bulletin for US Fiscal Year 2011. This Visa Bulletin had small progress in several classifications.
      
     





    December 2010 Visa Bulletin




    All Other Countries
    China
    India
    Mexico


    EB-2
    Current
    08JUN06
    08MAY06
    Current


    EB-3
    22FEB05
    08DEC03
    22JAN02
    01JUL02






    Read the full Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com.


  4. New Location? No new H-1 is necessary

    by , 11-12-2010 at 10:42 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)

     

    by Chris Musillo

     
    In April the USCIS announced a forthcoming change to the I-129, which is the base Form for H-1B petitions. The proposed Form included a little-noticed new requirement that an amended H-1B Petition must be filed whenever a H-1B worker changes his geographical location. This was inconsistent with prior USCIS guidance.

    Musillo Unkenholt noticed this proposed requirement and realized that it would have a devastating effect on H-1B employers and employees who routinely move to new locations. We sent an official comment letter to USICS in which we raised our concerns. Our letter cited five prior instances where the USCIS had said that no amended H-1B was necessary when an H-1B worker changes a geographical location.

    While the final revised Form I-129 will not be officially released until November 23, 2010, it appears that the USCIS has agreed with MU's position. The Instructions to the new Form I-129 omit any requirement that an amended H-1B Petition must be filed whenever an H-1B worker changes his geographical location.

    MU commends the USCIS for an open process and a recognition of past guidance.
     

    Read the full Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com.

  5. Keeping our eye on the H-1B Count:

    by , 11-11-2010 at 08:44 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)

     
    by Cindy Unkenholt and Chris Musillo

    Keeping our eye on the H-1B Count: According to the USCIS as of November 5, 2010, approximately 46,800 H-1B cap-subject petitions were receipted. Additionally, USCIS has receipted 17,200 H-1B petitions for aliens with advanced degrees. There are 65,000 "regular" cap-subject visas and 20,000 "advanced degree" H-1Bs".

    Several healthcare occupations regularly utilize the H-1B visa including, Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Language Pathologists, and some Registered Nurses.
     

    Read the full Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com.

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