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    H1B Visas for Medical and Health Professionals

    Who are Eligible for H1B Visas?

    H1B visas are available for those that qualify to work in a “specialty occupation.” A “specialty occupation” is an occupation that requires a theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge, and attainment of a bachelor’s or higher degree in the specific specialty (or its equivalent) as a minimum for entry into the occupation in the United States. Most professionals working in medical and health related fields meet these requirements. However, as a medical or health professional the attainment of the requisite education is often not enough to qualify for an H1B visa. It is often the case before a foreign medical or health professional can accept a job offer in the United States, they must demonstrate they have met state licensure requirements to practice in the occupation.

    What are the Obstacles to Obtaining Them?

    Many immigration law experts agree that the H1B visa is well suited for the attainment of both short-term and long-term career goals for professionals engaged in medicine and other health related fields. But medical and health professionals face some unique challenges in the attainment of their first professional position or extension of a current position within the United States.

    Permanent Residency Options for Medical and Health Professionals

    One of the advantages of the H1B visa is that it allows for a seamless transition to permanent residency. If you’re inclined to take advantage of this opportunity, your options will include obtaining national interest waivers (NIW), labor certifications, EB1B outstanding professors and researchers and regular PERM filings. In some instances the best available immediate option is the O-1 alien of extra-ordinary ability visa, which may be recommended by your lawyer.

    Should You Seek Professional Help?

    To improve your chances of success, you will need to consult with an immigration lawyer who knows the H1B visa process inside and out. Preferably, seek someone experienced in working with residency and fellowship programs in the United States. Also, opt for an immigration lawyer that understands the importance of having a visa in hand before the start of your program and the often unique need to work beyond the traditional six-year period.

    You should also see to it that they can work directly with your program, ensure that all timelines are understood and all petitions are properly and timely filed. A great immigration lawyer will work through your H1B visa petitions with your professional future in mind and provide guidance on how to best obtain your long-term goals.

    Of all H1B visa related employment categories, medical and health professions present some of the most unique and challenging obstacles such as two-year foreign residency requirements, employment beyond the traditional H1B visa six-year limit and state licensing requirements.

    Picking an Immigration Lawyer

    Picking the right immigration lawyer to give you the best possible chance of a successful H1B visa application is very important. You should consider hiring the services of a US immigration lawyer [http://www.usimmigrationlawyertoronto.com] such as Jeremy L. Richards who specializes in getting Canadians, Europeans and others H1B and other work visas. He also has lots of experience specifically with medical and health professionals.

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