The Law Dictionary

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How To File An H1B Visa

The United States government allows employers to hire workers in specialty occupations by assigning them an H1B Visa. These highly technical fields might be very hard to fill with native workers and production could be limited if these immigration exceptions are not granted. Here is how to file an H1B Visa.

Visa for Specialty Occupations

The United States Citizenship & Immigration Service (USCIS) has determined that certain occupations are so valuable that special work visas can be assigned to employees in these fields. The USCIS defines a “specialty occupation” as one requiring a theoretical or practical application of highly specialized knowledge. Usually, a master’s degree or higher is required in this type of field.

The USCIS lists the following positions as the mostly likely to receive the H1B Visa: architects, engineers, lawyers, physicians and professors. This specialty has also been extended to accountants, computer professionals and economists. Foreign degree levels and specialized work experience will be compared to equivalent American standards to determine the applicant’s qualifications.

Employer Fills out H1B Visa Application

Before even filing the visa application, an organization must file a labor condition application (LCA) to the United States Department of Labor proving that it is meeting all relevant labor laws. The wage offered must be commensurate to an employee in that job category. The LCA must be filed where the employee will do the work. A company must list its history, sales and number of employees.

An organization headquartered in the United States must fill out the H1B Visa form (also called Form I-129). It must include its IRS tax identification number on all requisite forms. The employer must prove 1) that the employee in question works in a specialty occupation and 2) has the required qualifications. There must also be a job offer for the non-immigrant worker.

If the relevant United States government agencies accept the application, then the non-immigrant worker will be given a temporary work H1B Visa. The LCA will list how long the employment is – that will be the length for the visa too, up to three years. Workers can have multiple employees fill out the visa application if there are multiple offers.