The H-1B temporary worker visa is a US work visa for professionals. The H-1B visa is one of the most sought after US work visas for foreign nationals who want to live and work in the US in a specialty occupation.
The H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa. It provides authorization for you to reside, be employed, and bring your spouse and family in to the United States for a temporary period.
Each year a total of 85,000 H-1B temporary visas are made available to workers in occupations requiring highly specialized knowledge. Unfortunately, there are never enough H-1B visas to supply all the workers who want them – which is why it is important to hire a lawyer to insure that your application is completed effectively and efficiently the first time.
With the correct guidance and legal team behind you, this process can be made simple with little effort on your part. Our Orlando H-1B visa attorneys pride themselves on taking the burden from you and providing a seamless service.
We frequently receive questions about the H-1B visa. In an effort to help you obtain as much needed information as possible, we have compiled the questions that we think are the most common ones, so please feel free to visit our H-1B Visa Frequently Asked Questions page to find more information on this subject.
85,000 H-1B Temporary Visas are made available each year. Unfortunately there are never enough visas to supply all the workers who want them – and once the limit is reached, no more H-1B visa petitions can be approved until the start of the next fiscal year, October 1. USCIS will randomly pick the 85,000 petitions via a lottery system.
Please note: not all 85,000 are freely available. 20,000 are reserved for people with a minimum Master’s level degree from a US academic institution. And of the remaining 65,000 a certain number are earmarked for Chile and Singapore – which both have signed trade agreements with the US allocating H-1B visas to citizens of those countries.
H-1B workers who are employed by or have a job offer from institutes of higher education (and their non-profit affiliates), as well as non-profit research or government organizations, are exempted from the H-1B Visa limit.
To qualify for an H-1B visa, you must first have a job offer from a US employer for duties to be performed in the United States.
To obtain an H-1B visa, the following requirements apply:
The position must also meet certain criteria, including at least one of the following:
If you don’t have a bachelor’s degree, but will be attempting to qualify through work experience, USCIS usually wants to see specialized training and/or work experience for every year of college that you would have attended.
The non-immigrant H1B visa is issued for an initial period of three (3) years and allows the foreign national to work in the US in specialty occupations during that period of time. The visa can be extended for a maximum of six (6) years. It is important to note that any time the person spends outside of the US does not count. In fact, US immigration law allows H-1B holders to “recapture”the time lost as a result of international travel time so they can take advantage of the full six-year maximum.
The H-1B visa requires a sponsoring US employer. The initial step would be for the employer to file a Labor Condition Application (LCA), which can be submitted up to six months before you plan to start working. An LCA is similar to a sworn declaration or a written oath.
Even after the LCA has been accepted, the employer must have a copy of each H-1B worker’s LCA and supporting documents available at its offices for public inspection. The file must also contain information about the company's wage system, benefits plan, and more. This is one reason many employers seek the help of an attorney in an effort to be in full compliance with these requirements. It is a complex and time consuming process.
The next step would be for the employer to file a visa petition to the USCIS. Based on the USCIS petition approval, you may then proceed to apply for the H-1B visa.
Vazquez & Poudat in Orlando, FL, has an experienced team in place to assist you and your employer with assembling all the necessary elements for the H-1B visa petition and application.
Please feel free to visit our H-1B Visa FAQ page to obtain answers for the most frequent asked questions we get from our clients on this subject.
The H-1B visa process is complicated and usually confusing. Suzanne E. Vazquez and Maud Poudat are board certified as experts in Immigration and Nationality Law by the Florida Bar and can help you! Our legal team includes a Hispanic immigration attorney who also speaks Spanish and French. They help individuals and businesses with all of their migration needs, including H-1B visa petitions and applications. Call us today at (407) 674-6968. If you have an emergency after office hours please call or text us at (407) 925-2554 and we will contact you shortly.