H-1B Highly-Skilled Workers Visa

The H-1B visa program allows U.S. employers to hire temporary nonimmigrant workers for specialty occupations. Specialty occupations are defined as occupations requiring the application of a "body of highly... more +
The H-1B visa program allows U.S. employers to hire temporary nonimmigrant workers for specialty occupations. Specialty occupations are defined as occupations requiring the application of a "body of highly specialized knowledge and the attainment of at least a bachelor's degree or its equivalent." Examples of specialty occupations include chemistry, mathematics, engineering, medicine, and architecture, to name a few. Individuals may not apply for H-1B visas; they are distributed only through the approval of employer petitions. In order to protect U.S. workers from unfair competition resulting from the program, the rules require that employers pay nonimmigrant workers equivalent wages to similarly-situated U.S. workers or the industry's prevailing wage. H-1B visas are subject to a yearly cap which is currently set at 85,000.   less -
News & Analysis as of

Now Is The Time To Initiate H-1B Cap Petitions For Foreign Students Or National Candidates Currently Abroad

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting new H-1B petitions for Fiscal Year 2016 starting April 1, 2015. The allotted number of H-1B petitions that the USCIS will accept, known as...more

Annual H-1B Visa Quota Will Open on April 1, 2015

For employers looking to bring non-U.S. citizens into the United States, an important immigration deadline is around the corner. Failure to plan properly for and meet this deadline may result in the employer’s inability to...more

H1-B Cap 2016 Filings Due In April, Competition Remains Steady

Time to start preparing for the H-1B Cap for Fiscal Year 2016! Demand for the H-1B visa category has steadily increased. Last year, USCIS received 172,500 petitions for 85,000 H-1B spots. Although USCIS issues receipts in...more

Overcoming H-1B Challenges – How to Prove Specialty Occupation Eligibility

The most common H work visa is the H-1B which is for “specialty occupations.” Specialty occupation means an occupation which requires theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge in fields...more

Immigration Law Update

The filing period for the fiscal year 2016 H-1B visa cap commences on April 1, 2015. It is expected, as has happened the last several years, that there will be a lottery based on submissions received the first week of the...more

Annual H-1B Visa Quota Available But Expected to Be Exhausted in Early April

On April 1, 2015, the United States Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting petitions for H-1B visas that are subject to annual quotas for the 2016 fiscal year (which would allow employees to start...more

Time to Get Ready for the H-1B Season

The most common H work visa is the H-1B which is for “specialty occupations.” A specialty occupation is one that requires at least a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent in a specific field of study as a minimum for entry into...more

Will the New Technology-Focused Immigration Bill Succeed?

Technology companies, industry groups, and trade associations are enthusiastically supporting a new Senate bill that would make it easier for foreign nationals working in the technology sector to stay and work in the United...more

January 2015 Immigration Alert

Happy New Year!!! All of us in the Immigration Law Group at Epstein Becker Green wish you the very best for a healthy and prosperous 2015. We hope that all your petitions and applications are approved and that...more

Here We Go Again: H-1B Petitions Must be Filed by March 31

It is that time of year again. Immigration practitioners are gearing up for a busy H-1B season. Just as accountants have their April 15 deadline for filing tax returns, employers, foreign nationals, and immigration counsel...more

President Obama’s Executive Immigration Reform: Shining a Spotlight on Reforming Optional Practical Training “OPT”

As a part of President Obama’s recent announcement regarding his executive action on immigration, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Jeh Johnson issued several memoranda to the directors of US Citizenship and...more

President Obama Announces Executive Action on Immigration

Last night, President Obama announced his plan for a partial fix of what many believe is a broken U.S. immigration system. This Executive Action will offer over four million undocumented individuals relief from deportation...more

Executive Action on Business Immigration

President Obama has officially announced his plan for a series of executive actions on immigration. While the national discussion is largely focused on illegal immigration, the president’s plan impacts the business community...more

USCIS Will Begin Accepting Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions for FY 2016 on April 1, 2015

The filing period for “new” H-1B petitions to be counted against the annual H-1B quota (the “H-1B cap”) for FY 2016 will begin on Wednesday, April 1, 2015. Cap-subject H-1B petitions will have an employment start date of...more

What Happens If H-1B Worker Changes Work Location?

The H-1B visa is one of the most sought after work visas in the country. Employees sponsored to work in the U.S. on an H-1B work visa are allowed to work in the U.S. for a maximum of six years, but the term can be extended...more

Immigration Alert: September 2014

Sixth Circuit Expands the Liability of Health Care Employers for Sponsorship Costs - On August 20, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit issued its decision in Kutty v. U.S. Department of Labor, No....more

USCIS Issues Policy Memorandum Regarding H-1B Petitions for Nursing Occupations

As a general matter, most registered nurse (RN) positions do not qualify as H-1B specialty occupation positions because they do not normally require a U.S. bachelor’s or higher degree in nursing or its equivalent as the...more

How Can I Bring My Family to the U.S. If I Have a Temporary Work Visa?

When a foreign national comes into the U.S. under a temporary work visa, the individual often wants to bring his or her family into the U.S. as well. Depending on the work visa obtained, the duration of the stay, and the...more

Immigration Options for the Employment of International Physicians

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will do many things to alter health care delivery in the United States. One thing it will not do, however, is significantly increase the supply of physicians. The new law calls...more

Important Proposed Changes to the H-1B Visa

On May 6th, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced two proposed rule changes in hopes to attract new investment and business to the United States. The proposals would extend employment authorization to spouses of...more

USCIS H-1B Premium Processing has begun for FY 2015 Petitions

On April 28, 2014, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) began premium processing for H-1B visa petitions subject to the 2015 cap, including H-1B petitions seeking an exemption from the fiscal year cap for...more

DHS Publishes Proposed Rules to Attract and Retain Highly-Skilled Immigrants

On May 6, 2014, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the publication of two proposed rules that reflect the Obama Administration’s “continuing commitment to attract and retain highly skilled immigrants.” ...more

USCIS Proposes Changes to Allow Some H-4 Spouses to Work

On May 12, 2014, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published two notices of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register. The public is able to comment on the proposed rules during the 60-day comment period. The...more

Special Immigration Alert: DHS Issues Proposed Rules to Retain Highly Skilled Foreign Workers

DHS Proposes to Issue Employment Authorization to Certain H-4 Spouses - On May 12, 2014, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security ("DHS") proposed a rule that would authorize employment authorization for certain H-4...more

DHS Announces Proposed Rules

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced this week that it will be publishing two proposed rules—one to extend employment authorization to spouses of certain H-1B workers, and another to enhance opportunities for...more

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