H-1B PROFESSIONAL SPECIALTY WORKERS

INTRODUCTION

The H-1B Professional Specialty Worker visa category allows U.S. employers to augment the existing labor force with highly skilled temporary workers. H-1B workers are admitted to the United States for an initial period of three years, which may be extended for an additional three years.  Tsang & Associates offers a complete consular visa service for companies and individuals. Our attorneys will assess your circumstances and assist you in meeting the requirements. Consultations are free and we look forward to speaking with you.


SERVICES

We will prepare an attorney cover letter along with all forms and supporting documents for the H-1B Visa application, including:

  • Mock Consular Interview Training
  • Obtaining H-1B employer job description and company profile and H-1B employee academic and work experience record
  • Job offer analysis based on beneficiary's education and work experience
  • Offered Wage Evaluation and Documentation
  • Actual employer wage documentation, LCA preparation and filing
  • Obtaining employee's college education evaluation if obtained outside the U.S.
  • Interview Preparation

In short, we provide a start to finish service. Your case is safe with us until the case is complete. 

PAYMENT

USCIS Filing:

Legal Fee: $3,250

I-129 Petition $460
Education and Training Fee $1,500
Fraud Prevention & Detection Fee $500
I-907 (Optional) $1,225
 

Free Consultation

*Legal Fees vary based on complexity of each case, and the above quoted price represents the amount we charge for a typical case. 

 

 


ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

The H-1B visa program is utilized by some U.S. businesses and other organizations to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require: theoretical knowledge, and attainment of a bachelor's or higher degree in the specific specialty (or its equivalent) as a minimum for entry into the occupation in the U.S. Typical H-1B occupations include architects, engineers, computer programmers, accountants, doctors and college professors. A professional will typically seek an H-1B to begin work in the United States, and often later file an application to obtain permanent resident status.

A three-step analysis is required to determine eligibility for an H-1B visa: (1) whether the position the foreign national will fill is a professional or specialist job, (2) that the foreign national is a professional or specialist qualified for the position based on his/her education and/or work experience, and (3) the wages and working conditions offered the foreign national must satisfy the Department of Labor (DOL) labor condition application (LCA) criteria. Attorneys must also determine whether the applicant is subject to any grounds of inadmissibility.

Requirements:

  1. Possess a U.S. Bachelor's degree; 
  2. Alternatives to Possessing U.S. Bachelor's Degree: 
    1. Possess a foreign degree that is determined to be the equivalent of a U.S. Bachelor's degree; 
    2. Possess an unrestricted state license, registration or certification that authorizes the individual to practice in that industry in the state of proposed employment;
    3. Possess education, specialized training, and/or experience that are equivalent to a U.S. Bachelor's degree;
  3. In order for the position to qualify as a specialty occupation, it must meet the following technical requirements:
    1. Full state license to practice in the occupation, if such license is required to practice in the occupation; 
    2. Completion of the degree in the specific specialty required as a minimum for entry into the occupation; or 
    3. Experience in the specialty equivalent to the completion of such degree, and recognition of expertise in the specialty through progressively responsible positions relating to the specialty;
  4. Employer must obtain approved Labor Condition Application from the Department of Labor.

Limitations:

  1. The position offered must require knowledge, both theoretical and applied, which is almost exclusively obtained through studies at an institution of higher learning;
  2. The position must require a specific course of study which relates directly to the position;
  3. The attainment of a bachelor's or higher degree in the specific activity (or its equivalent) is a minimum requirement for the position.

Benefits:

  1. H-1B visa is granted in increments for a total stay of six years; 
  2. Dual intent/opportunity to petition for future permanent residence. Immigration laws and USCIS regulations allow the H-1B holder to have "dual intent" with respect to his or her intent to immigrate to the United States. Therefore, an individual seeking the temporary right to work in the U.S. via an H-1B visa may also petition for permanent U.S. residence;
  3. No need to maintain a foreign residence. With the H-1B visa, there is no need for an alien worker to maintain a foreign residence, as opposed to many other temporary visas;
  4. Ability to change employers during H-1B status. An H-1B worker can start to work for his/her new employer as soon as the new employer files a new H-1B petition on behalf of the alien;
  5. Ability to change employers during the green card application process. An alien may change employers and it will not affect his/her adjustment of status provided that he/she has filed an I-485 for at least 180 days and continues to work in the same or related field for the new employer;
  6. Applicant's spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age may be entitled to enter and remain in the United States for the duration of the H-1B status holder's authorized duration of stay;
  7. An H-1B visa holder's spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age are permitted to attend school either on a part-time or full-time basis;
  8. An H-1B holder is allowed to go to school part time or full time without an F-1 as long as he/she currently holds a valid H-1B status. This means that while the H-1B employee is attending school, he/she must continue to work for his/her employer;
  9. Applicants can apply for a part-time H-1B, as long as work hours are at least 50% of the normal full time hours in the industry and the applicant satisfies all other requirements for an H-1B visa. If the applicant already has H-1B status, they can apply for a concurrent H-1B for another part time job. In this situation, there is no set number of hours that the beneficiary must work for each employer.

H-1B Cap:

The H-1B "Cap" refers to the annual numerical limitation set by Congress on the number of workers authorized to be admitted on H-1B visas or authorized to change status if already in the United States. The allotment of H-1B visas provided annually by Congress is 65,000. Out of that number, 6,800 are reserved for the H-1B1 program for nationals of Chile and Singapore. Numbers not used of that 6,800 (which will likely be several thousand) will be made available in the 45 day period beginning October 1st.

H-1B quota-exceptions:

  1. Extensions for current H-1B workers;
  2. Changes/amendments current H-1B workers;
  3. Changes of employer by current H-1B workers;
  4. New concurrent employment for current H-1B;
  5. Previous H-1B workers who have not been outside the U.S. for one year or more since that petition was granted;
  6. H-1B petitions filed by institutions of higher learning, or affiliated research; 
  7. Organizations, nonprofit research organizations, and government research organizations.

Multiple H-1B visas:

A U.S. employer may petition for a part-time H-1B visa on the behalf of an applicant as long as work hours are at least 50% of the normal full time hours in the industry and the applicant satisfies all other requirements for an H-1B.

If the applicant already has H-1B status, he/she may apply for a concurrent H-1B for another part time job. In this situation, there is no set number of hours that the beneficiary must work for each employer. He/she should ask the prospective employer to apply for a part time H-1B visa on his/her behalf. They may keep two or more concurrent H-1B visas. 

[From Aug. 14, 2010 to Sept. 30, 2015, additional fees apply to petitioners who employ 50 or more employees in the United States with more than 50 percent of its employees in the United States in H-1B or L (including L-1A, L-1B) nonimmigrant status. Petitioners meeting these criteria must submit the fee with an H-1B or L-1 petition filed]


EXTENSION

There are only two situations an H-1B status holder can extend his/her visa status beyond the 6-year limit:

  1. If the H-1B holder has filed either a Labor Certification application or an I-140 petition 365 days before the expiration of the six-year limitation, and the LC or I-140 process is still pending, the H-1B visa holder may extend his/her H-1B on an annual basis beyond the six-year limitation. There is no upper limit on total years in H-1B extension under such circumstances as long as the immigration process is still on going;
  2. If an H-1B visa holder has an approved I-140 petition and the immigrant visa number is not available for him/her due to the visa retrogression (not eligible to file I-485 due to visa number issue), the H-1B visa holder may extend his/her H-1B on a three-year interval basis beyond the 6-year limitation. There is no 365-day requirement for this circumstance.

 CHECKLIST

In order to provide you with the best and most accurate consultation, we recommend that you bring as many of the following information/documents as you can to ensure a productive meeting. 

Supporting Documents for Beneficiary:

  1. Resume, certified copies of degrees, diplomas, school records, academic credential evaluation, and employment verification letters (including the name, address of previous employers, employment period, job title, duties, as well as all names and titles under supervision).
  2. Professional license and certificate or other working permits, membership certificate of professional association.
  3. Articles, reports, honor, and award certificates regarding to personal achievement.
  4. Arrival/Departure Card, and a valid passport with a validity of at least six months.

Supporting Documents of U.S. Employer:

  1. Business license and registration certificate.
  2. Lease Agreement/Certificate of Real Estate Ownership of the facility.
  3. Brochures and promotional materials about company and it's products and services.
  4. Newspaper and magazine materials about company and it's products and services.
  5. Products List.
  6. Tax returns of previous three years, and Federal Tax returns.
  7. Company annual financial report, (including income statements, balance sheets, and cash flow statement), and organization chart, with employee payroll and payment records.
  8. Job offer letter.