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H1-B1 - Speciality Occupations

The H-1B1 visa is similar to the H-1B and is for persons in "specialty occupations. This new category was created by the U.S./Chile Free Trade Agreement and the U.S./Singapore Free Trade Agreement.

In order to qualify for H-1B1 classification, the applicant must have theoretical and practical application of specialized knowledge and must have at least a US bachelors degree or its equivalent AND the job sought must require at least a bachelors degree or its equivalent. Because this is not a self-petitioning category, the applicant must have a sponsoring employer in the US.

The spouse and unmarried children below the age of 21 are allowed to accompany or join the H-1B1 worker as H-4 dependents. However, they cannot work unless they qualify for a work visa. H-4 dependents can enroll and attend schools in the U.S. without obtaining a student visa.

STEPS

Because the H-1B1 visa requires a U.S. sponsor, the applicant must obtain a written offer of employment from a U.S.employer. Unlike the H-1B, there is no need for the employer to file an I-129 Petition with the USCIS in the U.S. However, like the H-1B, a prevailing wage needs to be obtained and a Labor Condition Attestation (LCA) needs to be filed.

DOCUMENTS

Both the applicant and the employer are required to submit documents for the H-1B1 visa.

The applicant is required to submit the following documents when applying for an H-1B visa abroad:

  • A completed visa application (Form DS 156) with one recent photograph, 1 inches square (37mm x 37mm), of each applicant, with the entire face visible. The picture should be taken before a light background and without head covering.
  • DS-157 Supplemental Nonimmigrant Visa Application is required of all men aged 16-45
  • A passport valid for travel to the United States for at least six months longer than your intended visit.
  • Proof of nonimmigrant intent

The employer needs to provide the following:

  • Copy of the certified LCA
  • Written offer of employment

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