What you should know about Nursing and Immigration
Have you been thinking about immigrating to the United States and working as a nurse? If you’re already certified as a nurse in your home country, then you may be able to get a job in the States, depending on your training, credentials and country of origin.
It can be a challenging process, but well worth it to get the job you want. Read on to learn what you should know about nursing and immigration and how an immigration attorney can help.
Why Immigrate to Become a Nurse in the United States
There is a shortage of nurses in the United States, so it can be a great place for a registered nurse to find work. If you’re from Canada or Mexico, it can be relatively easy to immigrate to the US and work as a nurse. If you’re from another country, it can be more challenging but is still possible.
You must first meet the immigration requirements mandated for all immigrants. Potentially, you’ll need a green card for permanent residence or an H-1B visa for temporary residence. Before applying for either of these, you’ll need to secure employment – see below for tips on finding a job.
You’ll need to pass an English exam, such as the TOEFL or IELTS. Finally, you’ll have to get a Visascreen certificate from the CGFNS (www.cgfns.org) to prove that you have met all of the requirements to be a nurse in the United States.
It’s important to check the specific license requirements for nurses in the state where you wish to work. The state nursing board will most likely check your credentials in your home country to make sure they’re valid. The state may look into the nursing program you completed to make sure it meets certain standards, including how long it’s been in existence and if the country is deemed adequate for medical training by the US.
In addition to those requirements, you’ll need to take the NCLEX, an exam all nurses in the US must take, and possibly a CGFNS exam. These tests are designed to ensure that you meet the standards required for US nurses.
Getting a Job Offer
One of the biggest steps you’ll need to take is getting a job offer from a US-based employer. Unless you have connections with a clinic or hospital, it may be best to go through an agency. An agency can review your experience and qualifications and help you find a job that is suited for you.
Who Isn’t Eligible to Immigrate
Not all nurses are eligible to immigrate. You must be eligible for the necessary nursing license and need the U.S. equivalent of an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in nursing. you will also need either sponsorship from an approved nursing agency or a secured job with a hospital or clinic. If you have committed a crime or have violated U.S. immigration laws previously, you might not be allowed to immigrate.
Immigration Attorneys for Registered Nurses Can Help
Getting a permanent work visa or an H-1B visa can be complicated – there isn’t one clear path to immigration. There are many steps and each must be completed before you’re allowed to work. Mistakes can make the process take much longer or get you denied altogether.
If you need help, an immigration attorney can help you navigate every step along the way. With an immigration attorney, you can rest easy knowing that you’re not missing any important steps or making any other mistakes. You can focus on studying for exams and getting credentials, while your immigration attorney takes care of the procedure.
Badmus & Associates is one of the top immigration law firms and can help you become a nurse in the US.
This article is provided as an educational service and is not legal advice. Consult with an attorney for your specific circumstances. For a comprehensive evaluation of your legal situation and options, you are invited to call us at 214-494-8033 or complete our consultation form below