H Visas

H Visas

The following categories of H Visas are available:

H-1B Specialty Occupations

As companies strive to maintain their competitive edge in an ever-competitive world, they look to recruit the best talent to give them the edge, They recruit from both domestically and internationally. The H-1B visa allows businesses with a US presence to recruit foreign nationals to work in the United States in a variety of professions which include Information Technology, Medical and Scientific Research, Banking and Finance, Education, and Manufacturing. In order for a job to qualify as a Specialty Occupation, its minimum requirement should be a Bachelors’s or higher degree. The H-1B applicant must meet one of the following criteria:

H-1B1 Specialty Occupations

The H-1B1 program allows employers to temporarily employ foreign workers from Chile and Singapore in the U.S. on a nonimmigrant basis in specialty occupations. Current laws limit the annual number of qualifying foreign workers who may be issued an H-1B1 visa to 6,800 with 1,400 from Chile and 5,400 from Singapore.

H-1B2 DOD Researcher and Development Project Worker

The requirement for this position is the same as for H-1B1 visas but the beneficiary does not have to file a Labor Condition Application.

H-1B3 Fashion Model

In order to qualify for the  H-1B3 visa, the position must require a fashion model of prominence. To be eligible for this visa category you must be a fashion model of distinguished merit and ability.

Period of Stay

The non-immigrant H-1B visa allows the beneficiary to stay and working the United States for up to three years. This can be extended for another three years for a total stay of 6 years. There are exceptions to this and we advise that you speak to an immigration lawyer for further details.

Family of H-1B Visa Holder

The spouse  and unmarried children (under 21 years) may apply for an H-4 visa. As of May 26, 2015, certain H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants can apply for Employment Authorization, as long as the H-1B holder has started the process of seeking employment-based lawful permanent resident status.

H-1B Process

Once you have met with one of our immigration Lawyers and we have determined that your academic as well as work background qualifies for the H-1B visa, we will start the process by filing a Labor Condition Application. Once the Labor Condition Application has been approved, we will proceed to file the H-1B petition on your behalf.

H-1B Cap

Currently, there is a limit of 65000 H-1B1 non-immigrant visas which are issued every year (commencing October 1 until September 30th the following year). There are also an additional 20,000 visas available to foreign nationals with a master’s degree from a US institution of higher education. Since the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) normally receives more applications than there are H-1B visas available, they have instituted a lottery system.  Each March, USCIS begins accepting Registrations for the H-1B CAP from candidates.  As they have received far more application than the slots available in recent years, they randomly selects candidates from the registrations received. Only the selected candidates can proceed to submit their H-1B petition.

H-1B workers who are employed or petitioned by a higher education institution or its affiliated or related non-profit entities or a non-profit research organization, or a government research organization are not subject to this numerical cap.

H-1B Filing Fees

The current USCIS filing fees for the H-1B visa are:

*American Competitiveness and Workforce Improvement Act (ACWIA)

Premium Processing Service

For an optional fee of $2,500, a business can request that an application filed on their behalf be processed and the petitioner notified within 15 calendar days. The USCIS will issue an approval, a request for more information, or a notice to deny or to investigate within 15 days. If the USCIS is unable to respond within 15 calendar days, it will refund the premium processing fee and continue to process the application under the premium processing service. The Premium Processing Service is only available for employment–based petitions such as H-1B.

H-2A Agricultural Workers

The H-2A program allows U.S. employers  to bring foreign nationals from certain countries to the United States to fill temporary agricultural jobs. The employer must file H-2A petition for Nonimmigrant Worker on the worker’s behalf. The job offered should be temporary of seasonal and show that there are not enough US qualified workers to do the work and that the position offered will not affect the wages of US worker employed in a similar job.

Period of Stay

The worker can stay in the United States for the period stated on the temporary labor certification. This visa can be renewed for one year each time for a total period of 3 years.

Families of H-2A Workers

An H-2A worker’s spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age may apply for a  H-4 nonimmigrant visa.  The workers family is not eligible for employment in the United States while in H-4 status.

H-2B Non-Agricultural Workers

The H-2B  visa allows employers to bring foreign nationals from certain countries to the United States to fill  nonagricultural temporary job openings. The US employer must file on the prospective worker’s behalf. The employer must file H-2B petition for Nonimmigrant Worker on the worker’s behalf. The job offered should be temporary and show that there are not enough US qualified workers to do the work and that the position offered will not affect the wages of US worker employed in a similar job.

Period of Stay

The worker can stay in the United States for the period stated on the temporary labor certification. This visa can be renewed for one year each time for a total period of 3 years.

Families of H-2B Workers

An H-2B worker’s spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age may apply for a  H-4 nonimmigrant visa.  The workers family is not eligible for employment in the United States while in H-4 status.


The United States Congress has set a limit of 66, 000 H-2B visas per fiscal year (October 1st- March 31st) with 33, 000 H-2B set aside for workers who begin work in the first half of the fiscal year and 33, 000 for those to start in the second half of the fiscal year. Any H-2B visas not allocated in the first half of the year are available for the second half.

H-3 Nonimmigrant Trainee/Special Education Exchange Visitor

The H-3 nonimmigrant visa allows foreign nationals to temporarily visit the United States to receive (a) training in any field of endeavor (other than graduate medical training) that is not available in the foreign nationals’ home country or (b) participate in a special education exchange visitor training program that provides practical training and experience in the education of children with physical, mental, or emotional disabilities.

Some of the fields for which the H-3 visa is available are agriculture, commerce, communications, government, and finance. The H-3 visa is not available for employment in the United States, it is intended to provide foreign nationals with training that they can use in their work in their home country.

Period of Stay

The trainee may be allowed to remain in the United States for up to 2 years. If the trainee petition is approved for a participant in the special education exchange program they may remain in the United States for up to 18 months.

Family of H-3 Visa Holders

Trainees’ spouses and children who are under the age of 21 may accompany the H-3 Visa holder to the United States as H-4 nonimmigrants. H-4 nonimmigrants are not permitted to work in the United States.

Frequently Asked Questions about the H-1B Visa

Why are there differences in the time taken to process H-1B1 visa applications?

The time taken to process an H-1B1 application (even if the visas were filed at the same time) differs depending on the USCIS center processing the application as well as the workload of the USCIS officer handling the application. There is nothing that our law offices can do to influence this process.

How long can I stay in the US on an H-1B status?

Generally, a person can work in the United States on an H-1B1 status for up to six years – the initial approval is given for three years which can be subsequently extended by another 3 years with an extension of stay being filed. If the applicant wishes to stay in the United States beyond the 6 years then a labor certification must be filed for the applicant 365 days prior to the time limit of 6 years expiring and if there is an approved I-140 visa petition on behalf of the applicant and there is no immigrant visa number availability for the applicant to apply for legal permanent residency.

Can I start my own business as a beneficiary of an H-1B1 or H4 with EAD?

The answer to this question is not straightforward. The following outlines some of the issues that the H-1B1 holder must take into account:

As mentioned previously, these are only just some of the issues surrounding the question of starting a business as an H-1B1 visa holder. Since every individual situation has particular factors associated with it and to avoid violating the conditions of your existing H-1B1 visa, we advise that you seek legal advice to discuss the full range of questions before starting any such business endeavors.


Client Testimonials

Star Icon

“Thank you so much for all of the hard work you have put in to the process of helping me become a permanent resident. This has been a long journey that has been challenging at times. It has taken 6 years, 3 jobs, 2 states, 2 renewals of my H1-B, multiple trips to embassies/consulates in…

Read More
AG A Greig
Star Icon

“First to say – i finally received a green card with these guys help! Everyone working at this law office is very knowledgeable and responsive. I have been working with them through my employer and it has been several years. My H1B was approved through this law office as well. I recommend anyone who is…

Read More posted on Logo
S Shin K.
Star Icon

“It is recommended that one should have an immigration lawyer handy. I recommend that this attorney be Trupti Patel. My case was not straightforward and they were very helpful. They get a lot of referrals and very busy but always available when you need them. I found them very knowledgeable about all types of immigration…

Read More posted on Logo
H Harvik R.
Star Icon

We are extremely happy with the Trupti N. Patel & Associates services, and it has been almost ten years that we have been working with Attorney Patel and her staff for all our US non-immigrant visa and immigration requirements and they consistently provide us with outstanding value. Their fees are extremely competitive, yet they offer…

Read More posted on Logo
V Vishrut Shah
Star Icon

Trupti Patel associates are the best professional law firm and highly knowledgeable staff. Really appreciate the patience and empathy presented by Trupti and AnnMarie during all stages / scenarios they handle on each case. Highly recommend Trupti Patel associates if you want prompt, trusted and knowledgeable team to address any visa cases. Thank you.

Read More posted on Logo
N Nandan Chandrashekar
Star Icon

The team at TNP does a good job gauging the client’s needs and attending to them. I have had a fair share of ups and down with the defunct legal immigration process here in America and the TNP team has helped me navigate the same. I would particularly like to recommend legal assistant Ms. AnnMarie…

Read More posted on Logo
R Rahulraju Rudraraju Murali
Read All Testimonials
The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) is the national association of more than 16,000 attorneys and law professors who practice and teach immigration law. Bagde Logo
The American Bar Association is a voluntary bar association of lawyers and law students, which is not specific to any jurisdiction in the United States. The mission of the ABA is to be the national representative of the legal profession, serving the public and the profession by promoting justice, professional excellence, and respect for the law. Bagde Logo
Expertise.com finds and reviews the top service professionals in over 200 industries across the U.S. Each month, we research more than 60,000 businesses to help customers find the best-qualified professional for their needs. Bagde Logo
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is a private organization that provides the public with information on businesses and charities. Bagde Logo
The Women's Bar Association (WA) of Massachusetts has over 1500 members and was founded in Boston, Massachusetts in 1978 with a goal to achieve the full and equal participation of women in the legal profession and in a just society. Bagde Logo
Boston Bar Association is dedicated to advancing the highest standards of excellence for the legal profession, facilitating access to justice, fostering a diverse and inclusive professional community, and serving our city. Bagde Logo
The Massachusetts Bar Association (MBA) is non-profit organization that serves the legal profession and the public by promoting the administration of justice, legal education, professional excellence, and respect for the law. Bagde Logo