Call us today! 617.956.0956

Boston | metrowest | south shore

Bostonian Legal Group

We are a full service law firm with offices throughout Greater Boston. Call us for your free case evaluation.

Learn More ....

The H-1B Visa Application Process

In general terms, an H-1B visa applies to individuals who have attained at a minimum a bachelor’s degree or it’s equivalent in a specialty occupation. Only 65,000 of these visas are allowed by the U.S. each year, plus an additional 20,000 for those individuals with U.S.-earned Master’s degrees or higher. The H-1B filing season begins on April 1st. This season, for employment starting October 1st, 2014, the Government announced that it had reached the cap on April 7th, just one week after the application period began. This is why it is imperative for a company who would like a foreign specialist to work for them in the U.S. to hire immigration attorneys familiar with the H-1B Visa application process.

Note that the H-1B Cap does not apply to most employment at institutions of higher education, or related/affiliated nonprofit entities, nonprofit research organizations or government research organizations.

H-1B Visa Requirements & Application Process

In order to apply, the candidate must have attained a college degree within the U.S. or the foreign academic equivalent. The degree must be specific to the job that the foreign specialist will be hired for by the U.S. based firm.

In addition, the foreign specialist must not have had any unlawful presence within the U.S. at any time. If the candidate meets all these requirements the firm’s attorney will then file a Labor Condition Application and a Form I-129. If the H-1B application is approved, it must then be sent to a U.S. consulate based in the foreign specialist’s country of origin for visa processing.

To move the process along quicker, a Form I-907 can also be filed along with or upon approval of the Form I-129. This form is referred to as a Request for Premium Processing. Though processing times are unique to each H-1B applicant, the progress of the application can be monitored online.

The duration of the visa depends on the applicant and the estimated length of time needed for the applicant to complete their work with the U.S. firm. This time allotment should not exceed 3 years. If the project runs longer, a new H-1B visa can be applied for to extend the stay of the foreign specialist for an additional 3 years.

As the filing process for the H-1B can be complicated, it is highly recommended the hiring firm contact an immigration attorney with a strong focus on H-1B visas. Please contact us to discuss your company’s requirements for H-1B visas.

Bostonian Legal Group