H-1B visas are issued to applicants seeking temporary employment in the United States in specialty occupations, as fashion models of distinguished merit and ability or issued to those providing services related to the Department of Defence’s cooperative research and development project or co-production project.
The specialty occupation category is the most relevant in this instance and is defined as “requiring theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge and the attainment of a bachelor or higher degree in the specific specialty (or its equivalent)” as a minimum for entry into the United States to work in that occupation.
The minimum requirement for the approval of H-1B is normally a baccalaureate or higher degree, however, there are exceptions.
The visa process consists of two phases. A petition is filed by the US employer and upon approval, the intended employee applies for a visa.
This period for petition processing is independent of the time required to process the visa application. The applicant must arrange an interview date with the relevant US embassy. Interview dates are subject to availability.
H1B US work visas are granted for an initial duration of three years and may be extended for another three years. This, however, does not prevent the visa beneficiary from adjusting status to acquire a permanent residence visa.
The spouse and children under 21 of a H-1B visa applicant may acquire H-4 visas. Under US immigration law, they are currently not allowed to work but may attend school.
Spouses of an L-1 visa holder (L-2 visa beneficiaries) may work in the USA. The same benefit is bestowed on spouses of E-2 visa holders. Thus, it may be to one’s advantage to peruse the details pertaining to these other US visas to see whether US migration may be achieved under one of these categories.