Good News for RNs: CIS Reverses Its Recent Policy on RN Visa Screens

The authors of this column recently informed the public of the CIS’s sweeping new policy that affected RNs applying for their green cards in the U.S. The CIS had stated that it would not approve adjustment of status applications for RN’s who were unable to produce a CGFNS visa screen certificate that was issued prior to the submission of the adjustment of status application. We are pleased to inform our readers that the CIS has reconsidered this policy and reversed itself.

The Immigration bar and healthcare employers were disturbed by the previous policy change and immediately began working with the CIS to urge it to reconsider its position. Some law firms were gearing up to file lawsuits against the CIS in Federal District Court. The CIS’s Texas Service Center recently informed the American Immigration Lawyers Association on June 16, 2006 that it has reconsidered its position and that it will abandon its new policy.

The CIS will revert to its old procedures and now request a copy of the CGFNS Visa Screen Certificate at the time it is adjudicating the adjustment of status applications. RNs will be given 12 weeks within which to provide a copy of the Visa Screen Certificate. The Visa Screen issue date does not have to predate the filing of the adjustment of status application.

This is illustrated by the following example. An immigrant visa petition and adjustment of status application are filed for RN on July 1, 2006. But, CGFNS has not completed issuing the Visa Screen, so it is not included. On August 15, 2006, CGFNS issues the Visa Screen Certificate. The CIS, on October 1, 2006, sends the RN a request for evidence allowing 12 weeks for the Visa Screen to be submitted. The RN submits the Visa Screen on time. Now that the CIS has reversed its earlier position, it can issue the green card.

At Reeves & Associates we are very pleased that the matter could be resolved without having to resort to costly litigation. RNs were facing the prospect of returning home and waiting several months for their immigrant visas or remaining in the U.S. and fighting the CIS in Federal Court. This reversion will prevent the unnecessary disruption in the provision of valuable services foreign RNs are providing our country.