What is an H-1B Visa?
An H-1B visa is issued for temporary workers who want to enter the U.S. for employment that is scheduled to last for a specific period and is not considered permanent. Additionally, an H-1B visa requires the employer of the employee they wish to bring to the U.S. to file a petition with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The petition must be approved before the worker can be eligible to apply for a work visa. However, there are specific requirements that must be met to qualify for an H-1B employment visa.
Eligibility Requirements for an H-1B Visa
To be eligible for an H-1B visa, an applicant must be considered to have a specialty occupation as well as hold an education level of a bachelor’s degree or higher. There must also be an established relationship between the employer and the employee. Some examples of specialty occupations that may be categorized under an H-1B visa are the following:
- IT/computer professionals
- Teachers (primary or secondary schools as well as colleges)
Foreign nationals who have been approved to receive an H-1B visa can live and work in the U.S. for up to three years. If employment in the U.S. needs to extend beyond three years, you may be eligible for an extension.
Family Members of H-1B Visa Holders
H-1B visa holders may wish to have their spouse and children accompany them during their stay in the U.S. These immediate family members may be eligible to come to the U.S. by applying for an H-4 visa at a U.S. consulate in their home country.
Family members must meet certain requirements, and the process can be confusing. Consulting an experienced immigration attorney to get through the process can help avoid making any mistakes that could delay getting loved ones to the U.S.
Why It’s Critical to Enlist the Help of an Immigration Attorney
The USCIS caps issuance at 65,000 each fiscal year. There are also an additional 20,000 visas that are available for those who have earned their master’s degree in the United States. With strict deadlines and a limited amount of visas available, it’s critical to contact an immigration attorney as soon as possible to get started on the application process.