Foreign citizens who are interested in coming to the United States for the purposes of work now have more opportunity to do so if they hold certain skills or perform certain jobs.

The H-1B visa, which is intended for individuals performing highly technical jobs, research and development work for the Department of Defense, and fashion model assignments, was previously issued at a rate of no more than 60,000 visas per year – but recent changes to the system now allow for up to 155,000 H-1B visas to be issued.  Changes also now allow spouses of H-1B visa holders to work while they are in the United States; previously, spouses were not allowed to work.

Job Requirements for the H-1B Visa

There are three versions of the H-1B visa – the H-1B, the H-1B2, and the H-1B3.

In order to qualify for the H-1B visa, the job which is to be performed by the immigrant must be one that requires a bachelor’s degree or higher (or foreign equivalent) as a minimum job requirement, must be one that the industry normally requires a degree to perform, must be one that it is normal for an employer to require a degree, must be one that is so complex that it cannot be performed without first obtaining a degree, must be one that a person must hold a degree in order to be qualified for, or must be one so complex and specialized that a degree is usually required in order for a person to gain the knowledge necessary to perform in the job.

Job Requirements for the H-1B2 Visa

In order to qualify for the H-1B2 visa, the job performed must be one which is administered by the U.S. Department of Defense and that requires at least a bachelor’s degree or foreign equivalent.

Personal Requirements for the H-1B and H-1B2 Visas

While the job requirements are different between the H-1B and H-1B2 visas, the personal requirements are the same.  Applicants for either of these two visas must hold at least a bachelor’s degree from an accredited U.S. school of higher learning, or the equivalent of at least a bachelor’s from a recognized foreign school of higher learning, or a license, registration, or certification that allows the individual to practice his or her profession in the state where he or she will work.

A history of progressive responsibility within a field can also be considered in place of education requirements.

The Fashion Model Visa

Also included under the H-1B series of visa is the H-1B3 Fashion Model visa.  This visa is issued to individuals who have reached a level of distinguished recognition in the field of fashion modeling and who will work on a project in the United States that requires a prominent fashion model.

Letting an Attorney Help

For the best chances of being approved for an H-1B series visa, applicants should partner with an experienced visa attorney before starting any of the necessary paperwork.  In fact, the attorney will fill out the paperwork and submit the application on the applicant’s behalf, which will help to ensure that the application packet is filled out fully and completely.