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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I find job openings in North Dakota?
The North Dakota Primary Care Office (NDPCO) contracts with the North Dakota Center for Rural Health to supplement recruitment and retention efforts of rural healthcare facilities. The Center for Rural Health utilizes the National Rural Recruitment and Retention Network (3RNet) for recruitment. While the Center for Rural Health offers recruitment assistance to providers, it is ultimately up to the J-1 Physician to find and secure employment.

How do I request a J-1 Visa Waiver?
The waiver request must come from a healthcare facility or immigration attorney on behalf of the J-1 Physician, and not directly from the J-1 Physician. There is no fee to the NDPCO to apply for a J-1 Visa waiver in North Dakota, although it is recommended that an immigration attorney be used, and fees may be associated with services rendered by an attorney. However, you must first apply to the U.S. Department of State (USDOS) for a case file number which you will need for the J-1 Visa waiver application. Do not submit this request and fee to the NDPCO. For further instruction, see the Application Process.

How long will it take the NDPCO to process my waiver request?
Each application will be reviewed by the NDPCO to determine whether the application is complete and meets the requirements of the federal and state guidelines. The amount of time necessary to process an application varies based on level of accuracy in the initial application. If all materials are provided, the initial review process should take approximately two to four (2-4) weeks. The sponsoring legal representative will be notified when the NDPCO has made a decision to recommend or not recommend a waiver. Non-designated flex waiver applications may take longer. If a waiver application is approved by the NDPCO, the waiver packet will then be sent to the USDOS for further review. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) will grant the final decision and notify the NDPCO, as well as the representative listed on the waiver application.

How do I check the status of my waiver request? Once an application has been submitted to the NDPCO for consideration, the J-1 Physician needs to refer all questions regarding his/her application to the employer or immigration attorney handling their application request. All J-1 Physicians who call or e-mail regarding their status will be directed to contact their legal representative.

Who actually grants a J-1 Visa Waiver Application?
The NDPCO reviews J-1 Visa waiver applications initially for consideration. If the NDPCO recommends a J-1 Visa waiver, the application is sent to the USDOS for their recommendation. The USDOS submits the application to the USCIS for final determination of approval/disapproval.