Employment-Based Visas

H-1B Visa

Is a nonimmigrant visa for foreign nationals who are coming to work in the U.S. in a specialty occupation. This type of visa requires at least a bachelor's degree or its equivalent. A job offer is required from the prospective U.S. employer and the employer must prove that despite efforts to find a qualified employee in the U.S., it was not possible to find such a professional. Spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age of the H1B visa holder can accompany him to the U.S. and attend school. However, those family members are not allowed to work.

H-2 Visa

Is a nonimmigrant visa for temporary workers due to an employer's one time need due to exceptional circumstances. This visa is not designed to fill a permanent position. It is meant for help employers fill seasonal needs, a peak load need, or an intermittent need. The visa holder is generally granted less than one year to perform the temporary work. If abroad, the worker must complete the process through the corresponding consulate and must demonstrate to the satisfaction of the consulate that he or she intends to return to his or her home country after completing the temporary work. There is a limited amount of visas issued each year.

H-3 Visa

Is a nonimmigrant visa that allows foreign nationals to train in a U.S. company because that type of training is not available in the foreign country. Eligible training must be in the following areas: commerce, agriculture, government, professions, finance, or in an industrial establishment. It cannot be used in conjunction with a graduate program or medical training.

L-1 Visas (L-1A/L-1B)

Foreign company employees who have worked in a managerial or executive position (intra-company transferee) or with specialized knowledge for at least one to three years prior to the application, can come to the United States to work in a subsidiary, affiliate, or branch office of the foreign company in the U.S. under this visa. Spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age may come to the U.S. with the L-visa holder and reside in the country. However, only spouses are allowed to obtain a work permit and social security in the U.S. Multinational Executives or Managers of the company may be eligible to apply for adjustment of status (green card) once the U.S. company (subsidiary, affiliate or branch office) is strong.

R-1 Visa

This visa is available to members of religious denominations having bona fide non-profit religious organizations in the U.S., who are entering the U.S. to carry on the activities of a minister or religious worker as a profession, occupation or vocation. The employer must be a bona fide non-profit religious organization exempt from taxation as established in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, or a religious organization that has never sought such exemptions, but would otherwise be eligible for such status. Visa applicants must have been members of the organization for at least two years immediately preceding their admission into the U.S and must plan to enter the U.S. solely to carry on the vocation of a minister of that denomination or at the request of the organization. Certain religious workers can apply for a green card.

TN Visa

Under The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Canadian and Mexican citizens may be admitted into the U.S. to engage in “business activities at a professional level”. TN visas can be issued for up to 3 years, and may be extended. TN visas are valid only to work with the company sponsoring the TN visa holder. TN visas are not subject to an annual cap and the visa holder is not required to prove his intent to return to the foreign country as long as he or she remains as a bona fide nonimmigrant.