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Working Multiple Jobs On an Employment-Based Visa

Written By The Shapiro Law Group on December 18, 2018

Foreign nationals who are working in Illinois with H-1B visas are able to work for multiple employers, but they must obtain an approved I-129 for each employer. H-1B visa holders may not simply start working a part-time job without having an H-1B petition filed for that employer.If they do, they may be found to have violated the conditions of their original H-1B visa and could face deportation. Secondary H-1B visas for workers who wish to add second jobs are not subject to the annual caps, and the employers do not have to submit the forms by specific deadlines.

How H-1B Workers Can Get Second Jobs

Many workers in the U.S., including people who are working under H-1B visas, benefit by working second jobs on a part-time basis. While U.S. citizens and residents can simply apply for a second job, H-1B workers must go through an additional process so that they will not be in violation of their visa requirements. The USCIS states that H-1B workers are allowed to work at second jobs. However, they must have their employers submit petitions for H-1B visas so that they can work for them without being in violation of their original H-1B visas. The employers do not have to wait for a new deadline for H-1B visa petitions, and secondary H-1B visas are not subject to the annual caps. The annual caps are based on the number of individuals rather than on the number of visas. People who have already secured original H-1B visas have already been included in the annual cap and can get new H-1B visas.

Work That Is Not Allowed

It is important for H-1B visa holders who want to get second jobs to understand the types of work that they are not allowed to perform. H-1B visa holders must secure positions as employees and may not engage in freelance or contract work. Employees pay taxes to the U.S. government on their earnings through their salaries. Contract workers receive 1099s and pay taxes through those which means they do not qualify for employment-based visas.

Other Ways to Supplement Income

In addition to getting a second job, there are other legal ways that H-1B workers can supplement their incomes. They can invest in the stock market or in new businesses without running afoul of their visas. They can also complete online surveys or enter cash contests.