The H-1B visa is for qualified workers wanting to enter the U.S. for a limited time in order to work. This visa is designed for migrants who already have a prospective employer in the U.S. who can file some necessary forms on the worker’s behalf. The H-1B visa has strict guidelines about that you, the applicant and your prospective job must fit in order to be eligible for the H-1b visa.
The H1-B program is only allotted 65,000 visas each year, so there is no guarantee that in any given year you will be granted an H-1B visa. Check the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website for information about the application time window and the status of the current year’s H-1B program. Applicants hoping to apply for the H-1B visa should wait until the 2013 fiscal year. The application window will be sometime in 2012.
Before submitting the H-1B application, H-1B qualified occupations and H-1B3 fashion models must have the Labor Certification Application approved. Your prospective U.S. employer must file the LCA on your behalf with the U.S. Department of Labor. If you are granted certification, your employer can then file a petition for alien employee on your behalf. Both the certification and petition are necessary and mandatory for all H-1B1 and H-1B3 applicants.
You will also need to include the H-1B form and will likely be required to file Supplement H to the form. If you are being represented by an immigration attorney during your visa process, you must submit your consent to your lawyer’s interference. Your employer does not need to submit this form on your behalf; you can file your consent for attorney on your own as a part of your H-1B application packet that will be filed as a packet of necessary materials.
You will also need to include proper documentation of your identity, admissibility to the U.S., educational attainment, and relevant work experience necessary to your specific subcategory of the H-1B. If you are claiming particular skills or education that qualifies you for this visa, you should provide documents proving your claims. Foreign language documents should include a full English translation to ensure proper review.
Once you have the necessary materials for your H-1B visa, you can file it with the USCIS website that presides over the location of your prospective employment. For example, if your employer is in San Diego, CA you should file your visa application with the local USCIS office. The H-1B application has a filing fee currently at $325 USD. There may be additional filing fees for your petitioning employer and Supplement H has a separate filing fee from the H-1B fee. Some applicants and petitioning employers may be eligible for a fee waiver, which can be found on the USCIS website. You should include your fee waiver, if applicable, with your H-1B application packet.
Alien workers applying to extend the time on their H-1B visa must reapply following the same guidelines.
For more information and help getting a visa, contact immigration attorney Phillip Kim!
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