What is the H1-B Visa?:
The H-1B visa is considered a non-immigrant visa which allows a foreign worker with a Bachelor’s degree in a specialty occupation to work for a U.S. company for up to six years. This visa allows a foreign worker to apply for a green card as the visa allows for “dual intent” meaning the intent to stay temporarily and also to permanently immigrate to the U.S.
A major limitation on these type of visas is the “cap” on total number issued each year which limits 65,000 per year, with additional 20,000 visas available for individuals who have a Master’s degree from the U.S. Because of the high demand and popularity of this type of visa, every year, the cap is exhausted in a few days time.
Do I Qualify for an H1-B Visa?
If you have a Bachelor’s degree, you may qualify. However, USCIS focuses on the job and whether it requires your degree. They will assess: (1) if the Bachelor’s degree is normally the minimum requirement for the position; (2) if the degree is common to the industry or the job’s complexity requires an individual with that particular degree; (3) if the employer would normally require a degree for the position; and (4) whether the nature of the specific duties is so complex and specialized that knowledge needed to perform the duties usually relates to obtaining a bachelor’s degree.
How do I apply for an H1-B Visa and how long does it last for?
This visa is initially granted for a 3 year duration and can be renewed for another 3 years. Under certain circumstances, you may be able to get additional extensions as well. Your spouse and children under 21 can also accompany you into the U.S. but your spouse is not allowed to work unless he/she is eligible for another visa that grants them work authorization.
If you have any questions related to the H1-B work visa, please call our office at 503-951-8209.