Non-Immigrant Visa Solutions: H-1B Visa

Business & Employment Immigration

The H-1B is a temporary work visa for specialty occupation meaning a position of employment that requires a college degree or its equivalency. Equivalency is determined at every 3 years of experience equaling 1 year of school. The initial visa is approved for 3 years and can be extended for another 3 years after that.

 

H-1B Timing Issues—It is important to consider timing issues when hiring individuals who require an H-1B visa. There are 65,000 allocated Visa numbers available for H-1B. The governments fiscal year is from October 1 through September 30. There have been years where the H-1B cap limit has been reached prior to the end of the fiscal year.  No new H-1B visas were issued for several months during that year. This may be an important consideration for summer or fall hiring.

 

The following is an outline of the process for obtaining an H-1B visa:

  • An employer seeking to hire an H-1B employee must obtain an approved Labor Condition Application (LCA) through the Department of Labor
  • Once the LCA is approved, the H-1B forms and supporting documents are submitted to the USCIS in a packet
  • Once the Petition and H-1B packet are approved, the prospective employee will either then prepare for consular processing if they are in a foreign country

OR

  • If they are already in the United States, they will be awarded a Change of Status that would have been filed in the H-1B packet.