Temporary Employment Visas
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The H-1B visa (for persons working in specialty occupations) is used by workers in the computer and other high-tech industries. Workers from other specialized fields such as accountants, attorneys, librarians, medical workers, and distinguished fashion models may also use the H-1B. There is a limit on the total number of H-1B temporary visas issued each year. In order to qualify for an H-1B visa, you must have a college degree or a higher degree. You must have an H-1B sponsor such as an employer who gives you a job offer for work to be performed in the U.S.
As an H-1B visa-holder, you are allowed to work up to a maximum of six years for your H-1B sponsor. You are allowed to travel in and out of the U.S. while holding an H-1B visa until the visa expires. Immediate family members of H-1B visa holders may accompany them to the U.S. but may not seek employment.
Specialty Occupation (H-1B)
This visa category applies to people who wish to perform services in a specialty occupation, services of exceptional merit and ability relating to a Department of Defense (DOD) cooperative research and development project, or services as a fashion model of distinguished merit or ability.
H-2B visas are issued for those who wish to come to the U.S. for non-agricultural jobs for which U.S. workers are in short supply. H-2B visas include skilled and unskilled workers and unlike the H-1B visa, there is no requirement for H-2B that the worker have a college degree. However, in order to qualify for an H-2B, the worker must have the background, qualifications necessary for the employment position in the U.S., a temporary or seasonal job offer from a U.S. employer, and most importantly there must be no U.S. workers willing or able to take the employment position which the foreigner has been offered.
Before a foreign worker can obtain the H-2B visa, the employer of the foreign worker must first apply for a temporary labor certification to prove that there are no U.S. workers available to fill the position that has been offered to the foreign worker. The H-2B visa-holder must have an intention to return to the home country when their job or activities in the U.S. are completed. Immediate family members of H-2B visa holders may enter the U.S. by getting H-4 visas.
Intracompany Transferee Executive or Manager Visas (L-1A/B)
This visa category applies to a manager, executive or a specialized knowledge employee employed by a foreign business entity who wants to come to the United States to open an office location in the United States.
Cultural Exchange Visas (Q-1, J-1)
There are two nonimmigrant visa categories for persons who want to participate in Exchange Visitor programs in the United States. The J nonimmigrant visa is for educational and cultural exchange programs. The Q nonimmigrant visa is for international cultural exchange programs for the purpose of providing practical training and employment, and to share the history, culture, and traditions of your home country with the United States.
J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa
This is for students coming to the U.S. to study, work, or train as part of an exchange program). The J-1 visa is for foreigners who want to participate in an approved program by the Department of State that is focused on teaching, receiving training, consulting, participating in an internship or conducting research. U.S. employers can also use the J-1 visa to hire workers to receive on-the-job training. If you wish to come to the U.S. as a student, scholar, trainee, intern, teacher, professor, research assistant, or to receive specialized training as a medical graduate, you may qualify for a J-1 visa.
As a prerequisite to obtaining a J-1, you must already have been accepted into the exchange visitor program. You must also show sufficient financial resources to cover your expenses during your stay in the U.S. A requirement of the J-1 visa is an intention to return to the home country at the completion of the exchange visitor program. J-1 visa holders may travel domestically & internationally outside the U.S. until they complete the exchange program. The immediate family members such as spouses and children of those holding the J-1 visa may accompany them to the U.S. by obtaining a J-2 visa. Those with the J-1 and J-2 visas may work legally in the U.S. but the J-2 visa holder must prove that the reason for employment is not due to the economic necessity to support the J-1 visa holder.
Labor Certification and Permanent Employment Visas (Eb-2, 3)
This is an immigrant visa category which shall allow certain employers petition on behalf of their employees. The individuals, if approved, shall be provided Legal Permanent Residence in the United States.
Individuals of Extraordinary Ability Visas (O1-, Eb-1)
This visa category is for both nonimmigrant and immigrant visas for individuals of extraordinary ability in the arts, sciences or business, are an outstanding professor or researcher, or are a multinational executive or manager. Each occupational category has certain requirements that must be met.