Non Immigrant Working Visas

E-2

INVESTORS

O-1

EXTRAORDINARY ABILITY

H-1B – Specialty Occupations

 

The H-1B category is a type of visa that allows U.S. employers to hire foreign nationals for specialty occupations for a temporary basis.

 

Eligibility Requirements

  • The nonimmigrant visa petition must be filed by a U.S. employer.

  • The employer must file a Labor Condition Application (LCA) certified by the U.S. Department of Labor evidencing that the foreign national will be paid in accordance to the Prevailing Wage in the area of employment.

  • The beneficiary must hold a Bachelor’s Degree, a combination of education and experience, or experience that is equivalent to a Bachelor’s Degree.

  • The occupation to be filled by the foreign national must qualify as a Specialty Occupation.

  • If the professional degree is not from a U.S. institution, the foreign credentials must be evaluated in the United States and should evidence that is equivalent to the U.S. Degree.

 

Validity Period

  • The visa will initially be granted for a period of three years and subsequently may be extended for other three years for a maximum of six years.

  • The H-1B visa recognizes the dual intent which means that the foreign national while under H-1B status may apply simultaneously for an immigrant petition.

  • The time spent outside of the United States does not count towards the 6-year period and can be recaptured.

 

Special Remarks

  • These visas are subject to a yearly quota  

  • H-1B applications must be filed by April 1st of each year.  However, the visa will be effective as of October 1st each year.

  • If the foreign national under H-1B status is fired, the employer must pay for the travel expenses related to his or her return to the home country.

  • Spouses and children under 21 of the H-1B visa holder are granted H-4 status and are not allowed to work in the United States.

L-1A Intracompany Transferees

 

The L-1A visa category is intended to transfer multinational executives or managers from a parent company to a subsidiary, affiliate, or branch company.

 

Eligibility Requirements

  • The individual must have been employed in an executive or managerial position for a year within the last three years by the company abroad.

  • A qualifying relationship must exist between the foreign company and the U.S. Company based in control and ownership.

  • The duties of the proposed employment must evidence that is executive and managerial in nature.

 

Validity Period

  • This visa is generally granted initially for three years and may be extended in two-year increment for a maximum of seven years.

  • In the case of a new office, the initial L-1A status will be granted for one year.

  • The L-1A visa recognizes the dual intent which means that the foreign national while under L-1A status may apply simultaneously for an immigrant petition.

 

Special Remarks

  • Spouses and children under 21 of the L-1A visa holder are granted L-2 status and the spouse may be allowed to work in the United States.

E-2 Treaty Investors

 

This category is for individuals who are nationals certain of countries having a qualifying treaty with the United States and who are interested in investing or has invested a substantial amount of capital in a U.S. enterprise.

 

Eligibility Requirements

  • The investment should be substantial.

  • The enterprise should not be marginal which means that the new business should provide with more than enough income to support the investor and his or her family.

  • The investment should be at risk evidencing that the capital has been used towards the set-up of the business or the purchase of an established one.

  • The investment must be in the commercial sense.

 

Validity Period

  • The validity period of the Visa depends on the terms of the treaty between the country of nationality of the investor and the United States.  The validity period of the E-2 visa ranges from 3 months to 5 years.  Once the investor enters the United States, the period of authorized stay is generally two years.

  • The E-2 visa has no total limit on the number of extensions.

 

Special Remarks

  • The investor should evidence that he or she intends to depart the United States once the E-2 status expires.

  • Spouses and children under 21 of the E-2 visa holder are granted E-2 derivative status and the spouse may be allowed to work in the United States upon approval of an Employment Authorization Document.

O-1A Extraordinary Ability in the Sciences, Education, Business or Athletics

 

The O-1A visa category is intended for individuals who have extraordinary ability in the Sciences, Education, Business or Athletics and who can evidence achievements in their fields of expertise.

 

Eligibility Requirements

  • The individual must demonstrate sustained national or international acclaim.

  • The individual’s extraordinary ability must be evidenced by: Receipt of a lesser national or international award, membership in a professional association that requires outstanding achievement, work published by a major professional publications, major contributions to the field of expertise,  written articles published in major publications important in the field, leading position in a distinguished organization, or the salary is very high in comparison to others in the field.

  • A written contract between the petitioner and the beneficiary is required.

  • A written opinion from a guild or peer organization evaluating the individual’s work is generally required.

 

Validity Period

  • This visa is generally granted initially for three years and may be extended with no limit in the number of extensions in one-year increments as long as proof of continuous employment can be provided.

  • The time of stay granted depends on the duration of the activity of the event to be performed.

 

Special Remarks

  • Spouses and children under 21 of the O-1A visa holder may accompany him or her; however, are not allowed to work in the United States.