San Antonio H1B Visa Attorney
H1B Visa for Professionals
The H1B Visa is a visa that allows US employers to temporarily employ foreign workers in specialty occupations. A specialty occupation is an occupation that requires a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent. Employers must pay H-1B workers a prevailing wage based on their job and geographic location. The US issues 85,000 new H1B Visas per year, with 20,000 of those set aside for individuals who have a US master’s degree or higher. Examples of specialty occupations include computer programmer, engineer, accountant and medical doctor. Call today to schedule a free consultation regarding the H1B Visa with one of our immigration lawyers.
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San Antonio H1B Visa Attorney
The H1B is a work visa for professional level foreign workers in the US. The benefits of the H1B Visa are:
1. Live in the USA
With the H1B Visa, you and your immediate family will be able to legally live in the USA. Immediate family includes your spouse and your unmarried children under the age of 21.
2. Work in the USA
You will be authorized to legally work in the USA.
3. Public Education
Your children will have access to schools in the USA and will be able to attend classes from Pre-K to high school.
Your children that have already graduated from high school can attend universities in the US on the H4 visa.
5. Social Security Number
The applicant will be able to get a Social Security Number.
6. Driver’s License
The applicant will be eligible to apply for a US Driver’s License.
7. Green Card Eligibility
One of the most appealing benefits of having an H1B Visa is that it opens the door to a Green Card. This visa facilitates the H1B to Green Card process.
There are 5 general requirements that must be met to qualify for the H1B Visa:
1. Offer of Employment in the USA
A company or person in the US must be offering you a job.
2. The job offered must require a university degree or equivalent experience
The job you are offered in the US must require a bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience.
3. You must have at least a bachelor’s degree, its foreign equivalent, or equivalent experience.
You must have a bachelor’s degree or its foreign equivalent. If you have a degree from outside the US, we can determine if your degree is the equivalent to a bachelor’s degree.
If you do not have a bachelor’s degree, but you have work experience related to the job you are being offered, then your experience can be treated as an acceptable substitute for the bachelor’s degree. Generally, 3 years of relevant work experience is considered equal to 1 year of university studies. So, for example, if the position offered requires a bachelor’s degree in accounting you may qualify for the position if you have 12 years of accounting experience.
4. Your job offer must be related to your college degree or equivalent experience.
Example: If you have a degree in architecture, then the job the US employer is offering you must be related to architecture.
5. The job offered must pay you the same amount that a US worker would have been paid in the same job and geographic location.
Example: If a US worker in the same job would have earned $60,000 a year, then you must also earn at least $60,000 a year to qualify for the H1B.
Our immigration attorney can determine if the salary offered meets this H1B requirement. Call for a consultation.
The application process for the H1B Visa is a two-step application process.
Document Checklist for H1B Visa
When you start the H1B application, our immigration lawyer will provide you with a tailored, detailed checklist of the documents needed to prepare both Step 1 and Step 2 of the H1B Visa application. Generally, the documents needed from the worker are those needed to show that he/she is a professional. The documents needed from the employer are to show that the company can afford to hire the worker.
Step 1 – USCIS H1B Application
Once the applicant has provided the immigration attorney the necessary documents, we will prepare Step 1 of the application. Step 1 of the application is submitted to USCIS and the process can take anywhere from 1 to 4 months. Once USCIS approves Step 1, we then move on to Step 2.
Step 2 – US Consulate Application
Once Step 1 is done and approved, we will prepare Step 2 that will be presented to the US Consulate in your home country. This step of the application includes an H1B interview by a US Consular Officer. It is at this step that the H1B Visa is stamped onto the applicant’s passport upon approval.
Prior to the Applicant’s H1B interview with the US Consular Officer in Step 2, our immigration lawyer will schedule an appointment with you, to help prepare you for the visa interview. The immigration lawyer will help you understand the questions you are most likely to face in your H1B interview.
The H1B Visa is issued for 3 years, then it is extendable for another 3 years, for a total of 6 years. After that, you return home unless you change to another visa or your employer applies for your Green Card. If you are applying to change your H1B to a Green Card, you can extend your H1B beyond the 6 years, until the Green Card process is finished.
1. What is the H1B visa?
The H1B Visa is a visa that allows US employers to temporarily employ foreign workers in specialty occupations. A “Specialty Occupation” is an occupation that requires a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent. Employers must pay H-1B workers a “prevailing wage” based on their job and geographic location. The US issues 85,000 new H1B work visas per year, with 20,000 of those set aside for individuals who have a US master’s degrees or higher. Examples of specialty occupations include computer programmer, engineer, accountant, and medical doctor.
2. Can my wife and kids come with my H1B visa?
Yes, you and your immediate family may come to live in the USA when you get an H1B. Immediate family includes spouse and children who are unmarried and under the age of 21. The spouse and children of an H1B visa holder are issued a visa called the H4 visa. The H4 visa is the one issued to dependents of H1Bs. Those on the H4 Visa are not authorized to work, but do have permission to attend school in the US.
3. How do I start applying for the H1B visa?
To start applying, the first thing you need is a job offer from an employer in the US willing to apply for your H1B work visa. The visa applicant needs the support of the employer to apply. Therefore, the best thing to do is to contact an immigration attorney as soon as the US employer tells you they will help you apply for the H1B.
4. When should I apply for the H1B, while I am on the F1 or when I have OPT?
It is recommended that you apply for the H1B the first opportunity you get. If you have an employer willing to apply while you are on the F1, then apply while you are on the F1, but remember to apply for your OPT as well. This is advisable because it increases your chances of getting one of the limited number of H1B visas available each year. So, if you can, apply when you have the F1, and if you don’t get it, then apply again the next year while on the OPT.
For more information Contact Our San Antonio H1B Visa Lawyer
If you would like to set up a consultation with an immigration lawyer to discuss the time, costs and other requirements associated with an H1B Visa application, please call (210) 858-9681.