Thursday, January 22, 2009

US Immigration and Visa Lawyer Tips For H-1B Visa

If you own a business in the United States and want to hire foreigners in specialty fields to come to the U.S. and work for your company for a limited number of years, you'll need to apply for an H-1B visa. Though you can do this yourself, the process will go much smoother by hiring a U.S. immigration and visa lawyer, or green card lawyer. A visa lawyer can help you achieve your business goals while staying within the legal employment boundaries established by the U.S. government.

An H-1B visa is a visa obtained by non-immigrants. It allows your U.S.-based company to hire a foreign individual for up to six years, and it is typically quicker to apply for than a green card. Even if you hire staff and anticipate the employees will stay on with your company longer than six years, you may initially start the employees on an H-1B visa.

Keep in mind that only your company can apply for the H-1B visa, not the potential employees. You must petition for your employees to enter the U.S., and unfortunately, H-1B visas are subject to numerical limits per year. A U.S. immigration and visa lawyer can discuss with you how to apply and even guide you through the entire process. Visa lawyers spend years studying U.S. immigration law, and therefore know how to help you with all the legal paperwork. A visa lawyer can also help you recognize and possibly alleviate potential problems that could hinder you from obtaining an H-1B visa for an employee.

You may begin applying up to six months before the actual start date of the visa. In example, for the fiscal year beginning in October, employees may apply as soon as April. The employee may begin work in October if the H-1B visa is approved.

Types of Employees for H-1B Visa

The H-1B visa is meant for those who work in specialty occupations, or occupations requiring a high degree of education. These may be doctors, engineers, chemists, architects, teachers, etc. Generally, the employees must have the equivalent of a four-year U.S. Bachelor's degree, which can usually be achieved with a three-year degree plus three years' experience in a relevant field. Professionals such as doctors, lawyers and accountants must also obtain a license to practice within the state where they will be employed.

For non-graduates, you may hire those who can prove they have twelve years' experience or more in the occupation. For employees in non-specialty occupations, you'll need to apply for an H-2B visa.

The Process

As a sponsoring employer, you'll need to start by filing a Labor Condition Application (LCA) with the Department of Labor. Once an approval has been granted, you'll need to file Form I-129 and H supplement with the Immigration department that has jurisdiction over the place of employment. Form I-129W must be filed with the petition. There are fees involved with applying, which are based upon the number of employees required. Once this has been approved, you may notify your applicant and send all required documents to be filed in his/her home country at a U.S. consulate.

The documents and process of applying may seem overwhelming, but an H-1B visa lawyer can simplify the process. Visa lawyers understand the legal terminology and can help you fill out paperwork thoroughly and quickly. Even if you don't know of a visa lawyer locally, you can seek counsel from a U.S. immigration and visa lawyer online. This will save you many hours when applying for H-1B visa, and you'll be able to maximize your hiring efforts.

A visa lawyer can also help with other legalities such as PERM Labor Certification, L-1 visas, E-1, 2 or 3 visas, H-3 visas, P-1, 2 or 3 visas, O-1 or O-2 visas, TN visas, green cards, and other needs. Contact an online visa lawyer today to start building a solid work force!

Chris Robertson is an author of Majon International, one of the worlds MOST popular internet marketing companies on the web. Learn more about H-1B Visa Lawyer Tips.

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