H-1B Specialty Occupations
An H-1B petition is used by companies to employ foreign nationals in specialty occupations. Generally, specialty occupations are occupations that require specialized knowledge and attainment of a bachelor’s degree (or higher) in a field related to the job offered.
What types of positions typically qualify as specialty occupations?
H-1B specialty occupations are typically professional in nature. For example, doctors, engineers, architects, computer programmers and accountants could theoretically qualify as H-1B specialty occupations.
How long can an employee stay in H-1B status?
H-1B status is valid for three years and can be renewed for an additional three year period (six years total). In some cases a foreign national may extend their H-1B status beyond the six year maximum.
Does the employee need a U.S. bachelors degree to qualify for H-1B status?
A foreign national may qualify for H-1B status if their foreign degree is determined to be equivalent to a US bachelor’s degree. In addition, it may also be possible in some cases to show that the foreign national’s combined work experience is equivalent to a four year US bachelors degree.
When can an employer begin applying for H-1B status?
For employees who have never held H-1B status, an employer may file an H-1B petition on behalf of the foreign national beginning April 1 of each year. Once approved, the prospective employee may begin working in H-1B status on or after October 1 of the year that H-1B petition was filed.
How long does an employee in H-1B status have to wait before working for a new employer?
If the employee is currently on H-1B status, a new employer may file a change of employer H-1B petition and begin employing the worker upon filing the petition with USCIS and without having an approval notice in hand. If the change of employer H-1B petition is eventually denied, the employee may not continue to work for the new employer.
Contact Dhanani Law Firm Today
As a dedicated immigration law firm, we understand your goal is to employ the most skilled foreign nationals to further your company’s success and enhance our nation’s economic strength. In pursuit of this goal, allow us to handle your immigration situation, freeing you to do what you do best – run your company.
Call (404) 593-0434 to schedule a consultation with immigration attorney Rahim Dhanani. We are here to help you with your H1B visa needs.