Want to live and work in the United States legally? The H-1B visa might be the perfect visa for you. The H-1B visa covers many fields of work ranging from architecture and engineering to health and medicine. This visa allows a foreign national to be sponsored by a US Company for a period of six years and entitles your spouse (husband/wife) and children to accompany you and live in United States of America. Spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 may receive visas as well. Individuals can not apply for an H1B visa. One of the main benefits of the H1B visa is that it is a ‘dual intent’ visa – you can apply for a Green Card (Legal Permanent Residency).

H1B visas are subject to annual numerical limits, currently 65,000 for Fiscal Year 2011. H1B visa holders can travel in and out of the United States, when it has been granted by a United States Consulate. Certain H1B holders may be eligible to extend their H1B status beyond the six year limit under AC21 guidelines. H1B holder can buy or sell property in USA.

H1B Visa Eligibility

Persons who hold a four year college degree or higher educational degree, or the equivalent in work experience 12 years work experience, OR a mix of further education (e.g. 2 year Diploma) plus six years work experience. A license to practice in the chosen occupation (if such a license is required to practice).

List of documents required for H1B visa

  • Passport
  • One Photograph
  • A letter from the Current Employer
  • Offer letter form the company in United States
  • Resume of the applicant
  • Sample Company projects documents and some documents describing what the company does
  • Approval Notice (form I 797) of the original petition
  • Employment Verification letter
  • 6 Months Bank Statements
  • Degree Certificates

Once the application for H1B visa has been submitted to USCIS(United States Citizenship and Immigration Service) will be reviewed for completeness. The attached documents will be checked along with the application. If all the requirements are met, USCIS will send an approval notice to the US employer and approval notice will be sent. Using the Approval Notice, the applicant may obtain the H1 visa from the US Consulate. If the application is denied, the USCIS will notify in writing the reason for rejection.

In case of non approval of the H1B transfer, the original H1B visa will be lost. Hence before entering into a new job, it is always better to complete the visa transfer.

H1B Visa Transfer

Current H1B visa holders can transfer their visa and start work for a new employer once H1B transfer petition is submitted to the USCIS by the new sponsor company. H1B transfers are unlimited. During the H1B transfer procedure, the following documents may be required:

  • Last 3 months pay slips.
  • H1B approval documents.
  • Passport copies.
  • Copies of I-94 records.
  • Copy of Social Security Card.
  • Copy of existing valid visa
  • Latest Resume.
  • Copy of all your Diploma/Degrees.