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J-1 Visa Waiver or Conrad Waiver

J-1 physicians interested in a medical career and permanent residency in the United States must obtain a “J-1 visa waiver”, or return to their home country for two years, prior to seeking employment in the U.S.

There are four legal bases by which a J-1 physician may request a waiver:

  • Through the Conrad 30 Program which provides all 50 states with 30 J-1 visa waivers per year for employment in a healthcare shortage area.
  • At the request of an Interested Government Agency. Some of these federal agencies include the US Health and Human Services (HHS), Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), or Delta Regional Authority (DRA). A condition for this waiver requires an employer to file an H-1B petition.
  • Through a Persecution Waiver, applicable if a J-1 physician believes that he or she will be persecuted based on his/her race, religion, or political opinion if he/she were to return to his/her home country; or
  • Through an Exceptional Hardship Waiver, applicable if a J-1 physician can demonstrate that his or her departure from the United States would cause exceptional hardship to his or her U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident spouse or child.

Labor Certification

Labor certification is the most common avenue taken by foreign physicians in obtaining a green card. If you are seeking to employ and sponsor a physician for permanent residency status, we can assist you throughout this process. Physician national interest waivers can be granted if a physician is willing to commit to five years in one or more healthcare shortage areas. Because this is considered to be in the nation’s best interest, the USCIS will waive labor certification requirements for an eligible doctor.

Other types of visas that apply to the health care immigration are:

  • H-1B: For doctors, physical therapists and other healthcare workers
  • H-4: For spouses or children of H-1 visa holders
  • Schedule A: Immigrant visa for nurses and physical therapists
  • O-1: For healthcare employees of extraordinary ability in sciences or other areas.
Conrad Waiver/J-1 Visas
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We have represented nurses, radiology technicians, physical therapists, occupational therapists, and other healthcare professionals who may qualify for H-1B status. The Shapiro Law Group stands ready to assist American employers in processing J-1 visas and discuss requirements or known obstacles. You can reach our immigration attorneys online or call us at (847) 564-0712. We will promptly respond to your inquiry and arrange a consultation at your convenience.