MedPro Blog

Visa Screen Certificates and Visa Processing

MedPro recommends maintenance of a valid Visa Screen Certificate beginning with H-1B visa processing and continuing through the time that your US Permanent Residence is granted (green card). Although the Commission for Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) and the Foreign Credentialing Commission for Physical Therapy (FCCPT) both advise that once you present your Visa Screen certificate to United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that you will not need to present it again, this is a directive from CGFNS and FCCPT, not USCIS.

Presentation of the Visa Screen at the Consulate during your H-1B visa interview is not a presentation of a Visa Screen certificate to USCIS. The USCIS and the Consulate are run by two different US government agencies and the Visa Screen presented at the Consulate is not a presentation to USCIS.

Further, in order to extend an H-1B non–immigrant visa status, you must have a valid Visa Screen certificate in hand as well. And, the USICS requires you have a valid Visa Screen certificate in order to be approved for US Permanent Residence (consular processing or adjustment filing using form I-485). The Consular or Immigration Officer will look to you for a valid Visa Screen certificate before the green card can be approved. As a result, we recommend everyone have a valid Visa Screen certificate until the green card is approved.

Even if you have an I-485 pending, you should still maintain the valid Visa Screen certificate, because at any time the USICS may request you submit a copy before the case can be approved. Sometimes this happens even if you submitted it when you filed your case. EB3 I-485 filers from 2006 and 2007 in retrogression will soon see their I-485 cases adjudicated. It is possible the USCIS officer will ask to see a valid Visa Screen certificate before approving the case. If you do not have one to present, you could be in danger of a denial on the green card matter.