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Assisting Employers and Employees Nationwide with H-1B and H Visas

Competition for the limited number of H-1B and H-1B1 work visas warrants attention by an experienced and knowledgeable employment immigration attorney. Lawyers at The Shapiro Law Group guide U.S. employers through the process to secure non-immigrant H-1B and H-1B1 work visas for foreign citizens to fill positions requiring a bachelor’s degree, advanced degree or a combination of education and experience that is the academic equivalent of a four year U.S. bachelor’s degree.

In addition to H1B visas, we handle H-B1  work visas for citizens of Singapore and Chile who have a bachelors or higher degree and will be employed in a job which requires a bachelors or higher degree to perform the duties of the sponsored position.

H-1B Visas for Professionals

The H-1B non-immigrant visa allows temporary employment in the United States for foreign national students who have graduated from a U.S. school with their bachelors or higher degree or other foreign nationals  who do not otherwise have work authorization to enter the U.S. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has set the following current cap for H-1B visas.

Approximately 65,000 H-1B visas are available for individuals who for the first time will fill a position requiring at least a bachelor’s degree. Examples of H-1B specialty positions include: financial planner, business analyst, accountant, software engineer, engineer, computer programmer, programming analyst and many other jobs. An additional 20,000 H-1B visas are available for individuals who have a US masters or higher degree.

H-1B Visa Eligibility and Requirements

  • Sponsored individuals must possess (a) a bachelor’s or higher degree or its U.S. equivalent, or (b) a combination of education and experience equal to a U.S. bachelor’s or higher degree enabling the employee to perform the duties of the H-1B visa sponsored position.
  • The wage offered to the H-1B sponsored individual must be at least a level 1 or higher prevailing wage, or the actual wage paid to other workers similarly employed, whichever is higher.
  • Under President Trump’s “Buy American/Hire American” executive order, the employer must establish that the job position duties that the foreign national employee will perform as an H-1B non immigrant qualifies as being complex enough to qualify as being a “specialty occupation”.

Authorization Period, Extensions and Conversions

  • Foreign national employees sponsored to work in the U.S. on an H-1B work visa are initially allowed to work in the U.S. for up to three years. The employee is allowed to work in the U.S. under H-1B visa status for up to six years.
  • H-1B visa status can be extended in one-year increments beyond the six-year cap if the employee has had a labor certification application pending on their behalf for more than 365 days prior to reaching the cap. Employee’s H-1B Visa status can also be extended for three years if a PERM application is approved, a subsequent I-140 applications is approved by USCIS on the employee’s behalf , and immigrant visa number availability does not allow the filing of a green card application on behalf of the employee.

H-1B Portability

Individuals presently in the U.S. under H-1B work visa status may begin to immediately work for a new H-1B employer as soon as the USCIS receives an H-1B Visa application that has be submitted on their behalf by a new employer.

H-1B Visas
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The H-1B Cap: Proactive Legal Counsel

April 1st of each year is the earliest date an employer may file a petition requesting H-1B employment on behalf of a prospective employee who has never been classified as an H-1B non-immigrant. The employment start date must be October 1st or later (the start of the U.S. Government’s Fiscal Year). USCIS has now proposed a new system where employers will have to register with USCIS and submit the employee’s H sponsorship electronically to USCIS.  If the employee’s electronic H submission is chosen through a lottery process, the employer will then be allowed to submit an actual H-1B application to USCIS on behalf of the employee.

[The H-1B cap does not apply to individuals who already are in H-1B status and who are applying for an extension of their H-1B status.]

Based on the new USCIS H registration process, The Shapiro Law Group recommends that you now begin reviewing your anticipated employment needs as they may relate to the sponsorship of individuals requiring an H-1B work visa. We can assist immediately in assembling the documentation required for H-1B approval, in order to submit electronic lottery applications in a timely manner after the electronic registration filing process opens.

Other H-1B Visas

Contact a Fully Qualified Immigration Attorney about H-1B and H Visas

The Shapiro Law Group stands ready to assist American employers in processing or extending H-1B and H visas. You can reach our attorneys online or call us at (847) 564-0712. We will promptly respond to your inquiry and arrange a consultation at your convenience.