Question: I am a registered nurse from Canada looking to get a green card in the U.S. I worked in the U.S. on a TN visa last year. I’ve read about the Schedule A, but I don’t think I qualify as I am not a Manager or Director of Nursing. I have a bachelor’s degree in Nursing and work as a regular staff nurse.
Reply: In order to qualify for a Schedule A green card as a Nurse, you must have a job offer for employment as a professional nurse and possess one of the following:
1. Certificate evidencing that you have passed the Commission on Graduates in Foreign Nursing Schools (“CGFNS”);
2. Documentation that you have passed the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (“NCLEX-RN”); or
3. Documentation that you possess a permanent, full and unrestricted license to practice nursing in the state of intended employment. 20 C.F.R. § 656.5 (a) (2).
With respect to the types of nursing positions available for a Schedule A green card, there is no requirement that you work as a Manager or Director of Nursing. The basic requirements are that the job duties involved are appropriate for a position that requires licensure as a registered nurse. Adjudicator’s Field Manual § 22.2 (b) (4) (C). The regulations provide the following definition of a professional nurse for purposes of qualifying under Schedule A:
Professional nurse means a person who applies the art and science of nursing which reflects comprehension of principles derived from the physical, biological and behavioral sciences. Professional nursing generally includes making clinical judgments involving the observation, care and counsel of persons requiring nursing care; administering of medicines and treatments prescribed by the physician or dentist; and participation in the activities for the promotion of health and prevention of illness in others. A program of study for professional nurses generally includes theory and practice in clinical areas such as obstetrics, surgery, pediatrics, psychiatry, and medicine. 20 C.F.R. § 656.5 (a) (3) (ii).
More information on the types of nursing positions and job duties that may be suitable for a Schedule A green card application is available at the Occupational Outlook Handbook entry for Registered Nurses.