H-1B1 | The Visa for Foreign Workers in Specialty Occupations

What is a H-1B1 Visa?

The H-1B1 Visa is a non-immigrant Visa used by certain foreign professionals with a high level of skill or academic degrees to work temporarily in the United States. It is awarded to those who can demonstrate that they possess the necessary skills for the vacant position, and that the job will not harm the US job market. Applicants must also demonstrate that they will return to their home country upon completion of their stay in the United States.

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H-1B1 Visa recipients may remain in the United States for a maximum of six years, and may request additional extensions if necessary. The Visa also allows accompanying family members (spouse and children under the age of 21) to travel to the United States with the Visa holder, although they are not permitted to legally work.

Who Can Apply For The H-1B1 Visa?

To be eligible for the H1B1 Visa, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Have a bachelor’s degree or higher in a specific field of study; either
  • Have at least five years of relevant professional experience in the field.
  • Candidates must also possess the necessary skills and knowledge for the vacant position.
  • Coming to the United States temporarily to work in the specialty occupation.
  • Do not exceed one year in your stay in the United States with an H-1B1 Visa.

Although any qualified professional can apply for a Visa, regardless of the field in which they work, professionals in areas such as engineering, computer science, science, medicine and educational professions, have a better chance of obtaining approval.

In 2020, USCIS implemented an electronic registration process for the H-1B cap . A capped H-1B petition will not be considered properly filed unless it is based on a valid and selected record for the same beneficiary and the appropriate tax year, unless the record requirement is waived .

We advise you to read the specifications carefully and consult with an immigration lawyer before beginning to complete an electronic or any other type of process..

How to apply for the H-1B1 Visa

To apply for the H-1B1 Visa , candidates must file an application with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The application must be accompanied by a valid job offer, as well as other documents that demonstrate that the applicant meets the visa requirements.

The application fee for the H-1B1 Visa is $460 * , and can be paid online through the USCIS website. Additional costs may include passport processing fees, as well as travel costs to the US embassy or consulate for the Visa interview.

*This information corresponds to September 2022

H-1B1 Visa Requirements:

Valid passport;
Form DS-160, Application for a Nonimmigrant Visa;
Documents proving academic titles and/or professional experience;
Documentation showing that the position is a senior position and cannot be filled by a US citizen;
Valid job offer;
Documents that prove that the applicant will return to their country of origin once their stay in the United States is over.


Once the application has been filed and accepted, USCIS will issue an Alien Registration Card (EAD) to the applicant. The EAD will allow you to legally work in the United States for the time stipulated in the job offer.

You may be required to submit an “Affidavit of Intent to Employ” with your Visa application. This declaration is a document in which you and your employer confirm that you intend to work in the United States for the period of time stated in the offer of employment.

H-1B1 Visa Processing Times

It is important to plan the trip in advance and apply for the Visa in advance. The US Embassy and Consulates try to keep the waiting times for the issuance of visas as short as possible. Some types of visas are more popular than others and may have longer wait times for the application and processing appointment.

The H-1B1 Visa processing time depends on numerous factors, including the status of the applicant and the amount of documentation required. In general, the Visa application and approval process is expected to take between six and eight weeks

Advantages of the H-1B1 Visa:

Allows foreign professionals to work temporarily in the United States;
Does not require a permanent job offer to be eligible;
Beneficiaries may request additional extensions if necessary;
Family companions (spouse and children under the age of 21) may travel to the United States with the Visa holder

Disadvantages of the H-1B1 Visa

The H-1B1 Visa is a type of nonimmigrant Visa that allows foreign professionals to work temporarily in the United States. It does not require a permanent job offer to be eligible, and recipients can request additional extensions if necessary. However, the Visa has certain drawbacks, such as the fact that it is a non-immigrant Visa, which means that recipients must return to their home country after their stay in the United States ends. Another drawback is that the beneficiaries cannot apply for permanent residence (Green Card) through this Visa. Family companions are also limited in terms of legal work in the United States

How many H-1B1 visas are granted annually by the Citizenship and Immigration Services

The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) awards 65,000 H-1B1 visas annually. However, this figure does not include visas that are granted to accompanying family members. Yes, although the number of H-1B1 visas granted each year is limited, the number does not include visas granted to family companions

Important notice for newlyweds:

If at the time of admission to the United States the applicants have not completed two years of marriage, being the basis for their immigration status, they will be subject to the clause of article 216 of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Under this clause, the DHS officer will grant them a conditional residence upon their admission to the United States. You and your spouse must jointly file the petition ( Form I-751 ) with USCIS to have your conditional status removed.
This petition must be filed within 90 days prior to their second anniversary of the date they were granted conditional resident status. If they do not file such an application to remove conditional resident status during the above period, their status will automatically be terminated/cancelled and they may be subject to removal from the United States.

visa h1b1

My Visa was denied, what do I do?

If your Visa is denied, you may request a review of the officer’s decision. You will be notified in writing of the reasons for the Visa refusal and given the opportunity to present new evidence. If the denial is upheld even after reconsideration, you may appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAO). These cases are very rare.
From Visa Franchise we recommend obtaining legal and immigration advice from a specialized immigration lawyer before submitting your Visa application. Having a professional will help you both understand the keys to the process and drastically increase the chances of success in your application. In addition, in exceptional cases of Visa refusal, specialized lawyers are the only ones who can file an appeal with the AAO.

What should you expect if your Visa is approved and issued?

If your Visa is approved, you will be issued the Alien Registration Card (EAD), which will allow you to legally work in the United States for the time stipulated in the job offer. Your family will also be able to travel with you to the United States under the same permit.

After receiving the Visa, you have 10 days to enter the United States. If you do not do so within this period, the Visa will expire and you will need to apply for a new one. Once inside the United States, you have 90 days to begin working in the position for which your Visa was issued. If you do not do so within this period, the Visa will expire and you will be considered an undocumented immigrant.

If your Visa is issued with an expiration date, it means that you are authorized to remain in the United States until the date indicated. You are not required to file an extension request if you wish to continue working for the same employer. However, if you decide to change jobs, you will need to submit a new H-1B1 Visa application.

How does the H-1B1 Visa protect workers?

The H-1B1 Visa protects skilled foreign workers from exploitation and abuse by their employers. Visa recipients must receive the same treatment and benefits as US citizens or other aliens permitted to work in the United States.

H-1B1 Visa beneficiaries also have the right to change employers, as long as certain conditions are met. If a Visa beneficiary decides to change employers, the new employer will need to apply for a new work authorization with USCIS before the beneficiary can start working for them.

The H-1B1 Visa also protects beneficiaries from deportation, as long as certain conditions are met. Visa recipients can be deported if they commit certain crimes, leave their employment, or fail to comply with Visa requirements. To avoid deportation, H1B1 Visa recipients must stay on top of their obligations and ensure they comply with all Visa requirements

How is the H-1B1 Visa renewed

The H-1B1 Visa can be automatically renewed for up to six years, as long as the applicant continues to meet the Visa requirements. However, a new application may be required if the beneficiary changes jobs or must make some other type of modification.

H-1B1 Visa beneficiaries may also request additional extensions if necessary. The Visa also allows accompanying family members to travel to the United States with the Visa holder, although they are not permitted to legally work. Once the application is approved, the beneficiary will receive an EAD, which will allow them to legally work in the United States during the validity period of the Visa.

visa h1b1

What happens if the H-1B1 Visa is lost

If an H-1B1 Visa beneficiary loses their card, they can apply for a replacement with USCIS . The cost to apply for a replacement is $455 , and can be paid online through the USCIS website.

H-1B1 Visa recipients must also notify USCIS if they change addresses, as USCIS will send all Visa-related correspondence to the last address on record. If a Visa recipient does not notify USCIS of a change of address, they may lose their card and be deported.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the H-1B1 Visa is a non-immigrant Visa that allows foreign professionals to work temporarily in the United States. It does not require a permanent job offer to be eligible and recipients can request additional extensions if necessary. The Visa also allows accompanying family members (spouse and children under the age of 21) totravel to the United States  with the Visa holder, although they are not permitted to legally work.

The H-1B1 Visa application process can be long and complicated, so it is recommended that you retain the services of an experienced immigration attorney. An immigration lawyer will be able to help you determine if you qualify for the Visa, as well as prepare and submit the application, maximizing your chances of approval