The H1B visa holder’s spouse and dependent children are eligible for H4 visas. Spouses and dependent children can legally reside the in the U.S. Under current regulations, H4 holders can attend school, but are not authorized to work. As of May 2014, the Department of State announced a new rule that proposes the extension of work authorization the spouses of H1B visa holders. There are two proposed requirements for work authorization. The H4 visa holder must have an approved I-140 petition to get permanent residence, or have been granted an extension of authorized stay under the AC21 Act. This could potentially authorize 97,000 H4 visa holders for immediate work approval, benefiting the dependency of the H4, as well as H1B visa holders. Unfortunately, the proposed rules must still be further developed and then made into law.… Continue reading...
During the H1B visa holder’s term of stay, there is also the possibility of changing employer. According to the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-First Century Act of 1998 (AC21), special provisions are made for H1B workers to change jobs. This portability allows employees already on H1B status to move jobs without losing status. The new employer must file an H1B on behalf of the employee, and the H1B visa holder must retain their valid status and employment until the new petition is filed and approved. This same AC21 Act allows H1B holders to extend their status past 6 years, without having to leave the country. In order to qualify, the H1B worker must have applied for permanent residence status and meet some specific requirements outside the scope of this article. These AC21 benefits are applied for through the regular H1B extension application, and are meant to help H1B workers avoid elongated processing waits that put status at risk.… Continue reading...
During the H1B visa holder’s 6 year stay, he or she is eligible to apply for legal permanent residence through their employer from within the United States. Permanent residence is commonly known as a “green card“. The beneficiary’s immigration status will go from non-immigrant H1B visa holder, to immigrant status or permanent resident. If the H1B visa holder is not eligible to adjust status in the US, or has past visa violations, consular processing may be the best path to green card status. Consular processing is applying for the immigration visa at the overseas US Consulate. The primary advantage of H1B visas is they allow for dual intent, meaning a green card application may be filed in the US while in H1B status and avoid having to apply at an overseas US Consulate.
Another issue that comes up with H1B visas is the 65,000 per year cap. When the cap is met, applicants must wait until the next fiscal year for a visa number to become available.… Continue reading...
The USCIS is extremely cautious when it comes to evaluating fraud in H1B visa applicants, and because of this a petitioner must be vigilant in providing documentation. It is the responsibility of the employer to petition for the entry of the foreign worker. Beyond responsibility for filing the H1B, the employer must also submit a Labor Condition Application (LCA) to the U.S. Department of Labor and must satisfy four attestations. First the employer must prove that they will pay the prevailing wage for that particular field. A prevailing wage is determined by the National Prevailing Wage Center (NPWC) according to job title, description of the position, educational and work experience requirements, job location, as well as type of employer. This wage is defined as the average of wages paid to professionals similarly employed in the same field. Secondly, working conditions for the prospective employee will be afforded on the same basis, and according to the same criteria as U.S.… Continue reading...
H1B visas are the most sought after visa category for immigrants with a Bachelor’s degree, and have very specific requirements. A specialty occupation must fulfill two main qualifications; first it must require a “theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge,” and second it must require a specific academic background, or specialized body of knowledge for baseline entry into a field. In most cases, this means the minimum attainment of a U.S. Bachelor’s degree or its equivalent. Often times the difference between “specialty” and “professional” must be examined. Although all specialty occupations are professional, not all professionals have specialty training. If a professional with a broad scope degree is applying for a specialty occupation H1B visa, the petitioner must be able to prove the beneficiary has an impressive background of work experience that could qualify as specialized knowledge.
- Engineers Graphic Designers
- Hotel Management
- Human Resource Management
- Social Workers
- Software Developers
- Systems Analysts
… Continue reading...