The U.S. operates the world’s largest and most dynamic economy, drawing people from around the world in search of opportunity. U.S. immigration law includes procedures that allow noncitizens to fill positions both on a temporary and permanent basis through work permits, visas, and green cards. Business-related immigration is critical to U.S. economic productivity, as foreign workers can help ease labor shortages in essential professions and fill jobs that may not draw many U.S. applicants.
De Castroverde Law Group’s attorneys have extensive experience advising clients on business immigration matters and obtaining work visas. Here’s a brief overview of what you need to know to gain authorization to work inside the U.S.
What Is Business Immigration?
Business immigration is a branch of U.S. immigration law that covers foreign nationals who wish to enter the country to work. The law provides two routes through which this can happen. Individuals can obtain authorization as either temporary nonimmigrant workers with a visa or immigrants with employment-based green cards.
Both processes involve several detailed and vital steps that require careful attention to obtain necessary approvals and avoid risking your work-related opportunities. Make sure you gain advice from experienced immigration counsel, such as the attorneys at De Castroverde Law Group. Our team is well-versed in all employment-based processes.
What Are Work Visas?
Nonimmigrants can obtain authorization to work in a wide range of fields. U.S. law includes more than 20 categories of work visas, some of which are awarded each year for seasonal positions in agriculture, landscaping, or other types of manual labor. The visa process may vary based on which category of authorization you’re seeking. Some of the most common types include:
- H1B visas : H1B visas are used for employees with special skills or roles requiring higher education. These largely fall into the professional category and include jobs such as biologists, economists, educators, surveyors, chemists, or civil engineers. Determining if a job fits into this category usually relies on a multipart legal test.
- H-2A visas : H-2A visas grant temporary and seasonal agricultural workers authorization to work.
- H-2B visas : H-2B visas are for workers filling temporary nonagricultural positions. These visas are capped at a certain number each year.
- E-1, E-2, and E-3 visas : These visas are intended for treaty traders and investors who live in countries that are U.S. partners under certain specific commercial treaties. These professionals come to the U.S. seeking to invest or start a business.
- L-1A and L-1B visas : These visas are for business owners seeking to expand into the U.S. or for workers transferred here from overseas to work in the country’s offices, factories, or other workplaces.
- O-1 visas : O-1 visas are intended for workers who the law considers extraordinary abilities. This includes those in the arts, sciences, business, education, or athletics.
The different visa categories have various types of eligibility criteria. Often, prospective employers must file a petition for the workers they wish to hire.
Don’t try to navigate the nuances of the law on your own. Consult with the experienced immigration counsel at De Castroverde Law Group. Our team, serving Las Vegas and other parts of Nevada, will advise you on which visa best fits your situation and help position you for maximum success.
How To Obtain a Work Visa
Temporary nonimmigrant visas typically last for a specific period. Generally, the process starts by having your prospective employer file a petition on your behalf with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The upshot of this is you will need to apply, interview, and have a job offer before beginning your pursuit of a work visa.
Once the petition is approved, you can apply for your work visa in the appropriate category. The process involves multiple steps and can take a year or more. According to the U.S. Department of State’s website, the steps are generally as follows:
- Complete the online visa application, including uploading a photo with the proper specifications.
- Schedule an interview, though these are typically not required for children under 13 years old.
- Wait for your appointment and prepare for your interview, which may be the longest part of the process.
- Gather necessary documents, such as a passport, and be prepared to show ties to your home country to demonstrate your ability to return home after completing your work assignment.
- Attend your interview.
If all goes well and you’re approved, you will receive your work visa and can begin your work inside the U.S. While retaining counsel for this process isn’t required, consulting a lawyer may help improve your chances. Contact De Castroverde Law Group for a consultation.
Employment-Based Green Cards
Certain highly skilled employees with the appropriate abilities, education, and experience may get authorization to come to the U.S. to work through an employment-based immigrant visa. Generally, there are five categories of employment-based visas, ranging from EB1 to EB5.
These move in priority order. For instance, the EB1 category gets the first preference for selection and generally is reserved for “persons of extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics; outstanding professors or researchers; and multinational executives and managers,” according to the USCIS website . By contrast, the EB5 category is for investors who pledge to invest $1 million to $2 million in the United States.
Remember that possessing a visa isn’t a guarantee that you will be admitted into the country. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency officers have the final say over whether you have met all the requirements for admission.
Turn To De Castroverde Law for Immigration Counsel
The team at De Castroverde Law Group of Las Vegas has extensive experience in employment-based immigration. Our team understands that seasonal and professional employers in the U.S. depend on foreign workers as a reliable source of labor. We work with companies and individuals to obtain the proper state and federal authorization to hold a job within the country. The immigration system is tricky. Don’t try to go through this alone.
In addition to employment-based immigration, we help with various other issues, such as spouse and fiancé immigration, deportation and removal defense, naturalization, and U.S. citizenship. Call us or contact us online for a consultation.
Photo Credit: 20130920-OC-LSC-0098 by U.S. Department of Agriculture is licensed with Public Domain Mark 1.0