What is the H1B visa?
The H1B visa is a nonimmigrant visa that permits foreign
nationals to live and work in the U.S. for a temporary period of
How long does it last?
A foreign national can stay in the U.S. in H1B status for up
to six years. The six years is issued in three-year increments.
Who qualifies for an H1B?
Foreign nationals who will come to the U.S. to fill specialty
occupations or who are accomplished fashion models.
What is a specialty occupation?
A specialty occupation is an occupation that requires that
theoretical and practical application of a specialized body of
occupations normally require bachelorís degree as a minimum
requirement. Applicants filling specialty occupation positions will
have a bachelorís degree in the field of the specialty occupation
or have a substantial amount of related experience. Generally, most
H1B applicants are doctors, engineers, professors, accountants,
lawyers, physical therapists, and computer professionals
How many H-1Bs are available?
2001, 107,500 will be available, Thereafter, the number drops back
down to 65,000.
What percentage of the American workforce is comprised of
H-1B foreign nationals?
Less than .1% of the workforce of more than 127 million
What benefits do American companies receive from hiring H-1B
Employer hiring H-1B workers are able to utilize the special
technical knowledge or skills of these workers that are difficult to
find. Employers are also able to satisfy temporary labor shortages
of skilled workers.
What are the obligations of an American company sponsoring a
H-1B foreign national?
The American company
must comply with the following requirements:
Protect wages: Employers must pay a wage to every H-1B
worker that is at least as much as what is typically paid in the
region for that type of work, or what the employer pays other
employees with similar experience and duties.
Protect working conditions: Employers canít use H-1B
employees to break a strike, and must notify their U.S.
workforce when they hire an H-1B. Employers cannot make the H-1B
employee work under conditions different from their U.S.
co-workers, including hours, shifts and benefits.
Recruit in the U.S. and Not Displace U.S. workers: Employers who
use a lot of H-1Bs must first try to find U.S. workers before
they can hire an H-1B. They also must attest that they are not
hiring the H-1B if they have laid off or displaced a similarly
situated U.S. worker. Employers make these attestations in a file that is open to
Subject to penalties: Failure to comply with DOL regulations can
result in civil and administrative penalties, payment of back
wages, and even debarment from participating in key immigration