Business Based Immigration

H1B, Specialty Occupations, DOD Cooperative Research and Development Project Workers, and Fashion Models

The H-1B visa is an employment-based visa that allows certain qualified foreign nationals to work in specialty occupations in the U.S. for a finite period of time. A “specialty occupation” is one that requires theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge in a field of human endeavor such as architecture, engineering, biotechnology, medicine, theology, or accounting, among others. 

A U.S. employer must sponsor such workers and their employment is limited to the sponsoring employer. There are laws limiting the number of workers in this category, but significant exceptions are provided to allow certain types of skilled workers greater access to U.S. opportunities.

H-1B Visa Challenges

  1. Specialty Occupation Requirements
    In order to qualify for the H-1B category, the position must be a “specialty occupation.” In other words, the position must require a Bachelor’s Degree, at a minimum, to perform the duties of the role, and the foreign national must have a Bachelor’s Degree, at a minimum, in a field related to the position. If the foreign national needs to use experience, combined with education, to show the government that he or she has a Bachelor’s Degree in a field related to the position, this is often a challenge.
  2. Third Party Placements
    Many U.S. employers hire foreign workers to be placed off-site at a client’s location.  This also presents challenges in the H-1B visa context.  The U.S. employer must provide evidence that it maintains the right to the control the foreign worker.  That evidence may consist of a service agreement, a statement of work, a purchase order, or a letter from the customer. It is often a challenge to obtain such documentation with the level of detail required by the USCIS. This challenge may also be compounded, if there are vendors between the sponsoring employer and the ultimate end customer.
  3. Posting Labor Certification Application (LCA) Filing Notifications
    Beyond the above, the Department of Labor’s regulations also require workers in the same occupation at the same work location where the H-1B work is to be performed to receive notice of the filing of the LCA. Where workers are placed off-site, properly posting this required notice at the customer location often presents a challenge as well.

An immigration attorney at Chammas Jurado can help you sort through the regulations and determine how best to proceed when employing foreign workers. 

H-2A Visas for Temporary Agricultural Workers

H-2A visas provide United States employers the ability to bring Foreign Workers to the United States to be employed in temporary agricultural jobs.

Employment’s Qualifications

The employer must prove the following: (1) that the job is agricultural in nature, meaning that the Foreign Worker will partake in such labor as the planting, raising, cultivating, harvesting, or production of any agricultural or horticultural commodity; (2) that the position is temporary, peak season, or seasonal in nature; (3) that there are not enough U.S. Workers who are able, qualified, available, or willing to partake in the temporary work; (4) that employing H-2A workers will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed United States employees; and (5) that the employer is appropriately certified by the United States Department of Labor with a temporary Labor Certification.

Foreign Worker’s Qualifications

Prospective Foreign Workers must be nationals of certain eligible countries. Prospective Foreign Workers must apply for H-2A visas and seek admission from U.S. Customs and Border Protection at a U.S. Port of Entry. Prospective Foreign Workers may be denied admission if they are inadmissible under United States immigration laws. Prospective Foreign Workers who are inadmissible may be able to seek and receive a temporary waiver to obtain admission to the United States.

Period of Admission

Generally, H-2A workers will be allowed to stay in the United States for up to 1 year. However, most H-2A workers are allowed to stay in the United States for the period specified in the Labor Certification. H-2A visas may be extended for a maximum total period of 3 years.

Family of H-2A Visa Recipients

The spouse and unmarried minor children of a H-2A Visa Recipient are entitled to a H-4 Visa. H-4 Visas are subject to the same period of admission and limitations as provided in the principle H-2A Visa. Neither the spouse nor a child of the alien beneficiary may accept employment unless he or she has been granted employment authorization in the United States.
Visa Process
The H-2A Visa process is lengthy, very time consuming and requires specific knowledge and experience. If an H-2A Visa is not the appropriate route for a Foreign Worker, there may be other options. Consulting with an experienced H-2A Visa Attorney at Chammas Jurado PC will make the H-2A Visa Process easier and less time consuming for the U.S. Employer and the Foreign Worker. Since the H-2A Visa process is lengthy in nature, Please contact Chammas Jurado PC promptly after learning of the potential need for a H-2A Visas.

H-2B Visas for Temporary Non-Agricultural Workers

H-2B visas provide United States employers the ability to bring Foreign Workers to the United States to be employed in temporary non-agricultural jobs. Non-Agricultural jobs include: Hospitality, Hotels, Motels, Chefs, Resorts, Theme Parks, Ticket Sales, Cruise Ships, Construction Workers, Maintenance, Janitorial, Ski Resorts, Retail Stores, Golf Courses, Landscaping, Security, Restaurants, Bars, Warehouses, etc.

Employment’s Qualifications

The employer must prove the following: (1) that the job is non-agricultural in nature and for non-professional workers; (2) that the position is temporary, peak season, or seasonal in nature; (3) that there are not enough U.S. Workers who are able, qualified, available, or willing to partake in the temporary work; (4) that employing H-2B workers will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed United States employees; and (5) that the employer is appropriately certified by the United States Department of Labor with a temporary Labor Certification.

Foreign Worker’s Qualifications

Prospective Foreign Workers must be nationals of certain eligible countries. Prospective Foreign Workers must apply for H-2B visas and seek admission from U.S. Customs and Border Protection at a U.S. Port of Entry. Prospective Foreign Workers may be denied admission if they are inadmissible under United States immigration laws. Prospective Foreign Workers who are inadmissible may be able to seek and receive a temporary waiver to obtain admission to the United States.

Period of Admission

Generally, H-2B workers will be allowed to stay in the United States for up to 1 year. However, most H-2A workers are allowed to stay in the United States for the period specified in the Labor Certification. H-2B visas may be extended for a maximum total period of 3 years.

Family of H-2B Visa Recipients

The spouse and unmarried minor children of a H-2B Visa Recipient are entitled to a H-4 Visa. H-4 Visas are subject to the same period of admission and limitations as provided in the principle H-2A Visa. Neither the spouse nor a child of the alien beneficiary may accept employment unless he or she has been granted employment authorization in the United States.
Visa Process
The H-2B Visa process is lengthy, very time consuming and requires specific knowledge and experience. If an H-2B Visa is not the appropriate route for a Foreign Worker, there may be other options. Consulting with an experienced H-2B Visa Attorney at Chammas Jurado PC will make the H-2B Visa Process easier and less time consuming for the U.S. Employer and the Foreign Worker. Since the H-2B Visa process is lengthy in nature, Please contact Chammas Jurado PC promptly after learning of the potential need for a H-2B Visas.

EB-2 Visas

EB-2 Visas are for members of certain professions (doctors, business managers, educators, etc.) who hold a master’s degree or higher, or those who can otherwise prove “exceptional ability” (i.e. expertise that is significantly higher than the norm) in their particular field, whether the sciences or arts, medicine, business, or athletics. EB-2 Visas are “Immigrant Visas” which provide the beneficiary Legal Permanent Resident Status.

EB-2 Visas Are Divided Into Three Subgroups:

  • EB-2(A): Advanced Degree Professional
  • EB-2(B): Individuals With Exceptional Ability
  • EB-2(C): National Interest Waivers

EB-2(A): Advanced Degree Professional

EB-2(A) applicants must hold an ‘advanced’ degree, meaning at least a master’s degree, or have equivalent qualifications; such as a baccalaureate degree and substantial experience in their field. Generally, a minimum of 5 years’ experience is required in the absence of an advanced degree. EB-2(A) applicants must have a confirmed job offer from a United States employer. The job offered must require an advanced degree or equivalent qualifications.

The required qualifications are as follows:

  1. Prospective Visa Holder must be able to provide Proof of an advanced degree, such as a master’s or PhD or Proof of a baccalaureate degree and at least 5 years of experience in your field 
  2. Prospective Visa Holder must be able to provide Proof of a U.S. job offer, which requires an advanced degree or equivalent.
  3. Employer must obtain a Labor Certification, through which the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) requires to prove that there are no qualified legal U.S.-based workers for the position in question.
Visa Process
The EB-2(A) Visa process is lengthy, very time consuming and requires specific knowledge and experience. If the EB-2(A) Visa is not the appropriate route for you, there may be other options. Consulting with an experienced EB-1A Visa Attorney at Chammas Jurado PC will make the EB-2(A) Visa Process easier and less time consuming for you. Contact Chammas Jurado | Immigration Attorneys for a free consultation.

EB-2(B): Exceptional Ability

EB-2(B) Visas are for individuals who can prove that they possess “exceptional ability” in the areas of arts or sciences, business, medicine, etc. The term “exceptional ability” is defined as “significantly above that normally encountered.”

The required qualifications are as follows:

  1. The Employer must obtain a Labor Certification, through which the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) requires to prove that there are no qualified legal U.S.-based workers for the position in question.
  2. EB-2(B) Visa applicants must prove that they have a confirmed job offer from a United States company. The job offered must be in line with the applicant’s level of exceptional ability.
  3. EB-2(B) Visa applicants must prove that they meet at least three of seven criteria set by USCIS. The criteria include:
    1. Official academic record showing that you have a degree, diploma, certificate, or similar award from a college, university, school, or other institution of learning relating to your area of exceptional ability
    2. Letters documenting at least 10 years of full-time experience in your occupation
    3. A license to practice your profession or certification for your profession or occupation
    4. Evidence that you have commanded a salary or other remuneration for services that demonstrates your exceptional ability
    5. Membership in a professional association(s)
    6. Recognition for your achievements and significant contributions to your industry or field by your peers, government entities, professional or business organizations
    7. Other comparable evidence of eligibility is also acceptable
Visa Process

The EB-2(B) Visa process is lengthy, very time consuming and requires specific knowledge and experience. If the EB-2(B) Visa is not the appropriate route for you, there may be other options. Consulting with an experienced EB-2(B) Visa Attorney at Chammas Jurado PC will make the EB-2(B) Visa Process easier and less time consuming for you. Contact Chammas Jurado | The Immigration Attorneys for a free consultation.

EB-2(C): National Interest Waiver

EB-2(C) Visas provide an alternative path to an EB-2 Visa for an individual who is requesting that the usual Labor Certification and job offer requirements be waived because it is in the interest of the United States. This generally means that EB-2(C) Applicants must demonstrate that they have an exceptional ability or talent in certain fields that will make them an asset to the United States. While EB-2(C)Visas can be preferable to other employment-based green card because they do not require a labor certification or a job offer, they tend to be complex and involve extensive scrutiny in the approval process.

The required qualifications are as follows:

EB-2(C) Applicants must demonstrate that they meet at least three of the following seven criteria:

  1. Proof of an academic qualification in your field of exceptional ability 
  2. Proof that you have at least 10 years of experience working full time in your field 
  3. A professional license, if needed for your profession 
  4. Proof that you earn a salary appropriate to your level of exceptional ability 
  5. Membership of professional associations in your field 
  6. Proof that your contributions to your field have been recognized by your peers, such as prizes and awards 
  7. Some other proof of your exceptional ability is sometimes accepted, please contact us if you’re not sure if the evidence you have is suitable
Visa Process
The EB-2(C) Visa process is lengthy, very time consuming and requires specific knowledge and experience. If the EB-2(C) Visa is not the appropriate route for you, there may be other options. Consulting with an experienced EB-2(C) Visa Attorney at Chammas Jurado PC will make the EB-2(C) Visa Process easier and less time consuming for you. Contact Chammas Jurado | The Immigration Attorneys for a free consultation.

EB3, Skilled, Professional, or Other Workers

EB-3 Visas are the third preference level of employment-based immigrant visas. The required qualifications for EB-3 visas are less stringent than those for EB-1 and EB-2 visas. EB-3 applicants do not need to prove that they have earned internationally acclaimed awards, that they are in an executive position in an American company, or that they possess an advanced education.

EB-3 Visas Are Divided Into Three Subgroups:

  • Foreign Professionals with a Bachelor’s Degree
  • Skilled Workers with at least 2 Years of Experience
  • Unskilled Workers

Foreign Professionals with a Bachelor’s Degree

Individuals must hold a U.S. bachelor’s degree or foreign equivalent degree. In addition, the position must be one that normally requires a bachelor’s degree for the profession. This includes engineering, computer science, etc.

The required qualifications are as follows:

  1. Prospective Visa Holder must be able to provide Proof that the individual holds a U.S. bachelor’s degree or equivalent foreign degree 
  2. Prospective Visa Holder must be able to provide Proof that a bachelor’s degree is required for entry into the profession.
  3. Employer must obtain a Labor Certification, through which the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) requires to prove that there are no qualified legal U.S.-based workers for the position in question.
Visa Process
The EB-3 Visa process is lengthy, very time consuming and requires specific knowledge and experience. If the EB-3 Visa is not the appropriate route for you, there may be other options. Consulting with an experienced EB-3 Visa Attorney at Chammas Jurado PC will make the EB-3 Visa Process easier and less time consuming for you. Contact Chammas Jurado | The Immigration Attorneys for a free consultation.

Skilled Worker With at Least 2 Years of Experience

This EB-3 category is for positions that are not seasonal or temporary and require at least two years of job experience, an undergraduate degree, or a vocational training apprenticeship in a trade. While there is no specific degree requirement for EB3 skilled workers, a degree may be counted as “experience” toward meeting the basic requirements for EB3 classification for skilled workers.

The required qualifications are as follows:

  1. Evidence that the alien meets the educational, training, or experience and any other requirements of the labor certification.
  2. Employer must obtain a Labor Certification, through which the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) requires to prove that there are no qualified legal U.S.-based workers for the position in question.
    • Please note that if a petitioner intends for the petition to be adjudicated for an EB3 skilled worker, he or she must ensure that the labor certification does not require a baccalaureate degree or foreign equivalent degree. If it does, USCIS will adjudicate the petition for an EB3 professional rather than an EB3 skilled worker. However, if the labor certification lists a baccalaureate degree “or its equivalent,” the petition can be adjudicated for an EB3 skilled worker instead.
Visa Process
The EB-3 Visa process is lengthy, very time consuming and requires specific knowledge and experience. If the EB-3 Visa is not the appropriate route for you, there may be other options. Consulting with an experienced EB-3 Visa Attorney at Chammas Jurado PC will make the EB-3 Visa Process easier and less time consuming for you. Contact Chammas Jurado | The Immigration Attorneys for a free consultation.

Unskilled Worker

This EB-3 category is for other workers with less than two years of higher education, training, or experience. In other words, these are “unskilled” workers who can perform labor for which qualified workers are not available in the United States.

The required qualifications are as follows:

  1. Evidence that the individual meets the educational, training, or experience and any other requirements of the labor certification.
  2. Employer must obtain a Labor Certification, through which the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) requires to prove that there are no qualified legal U.S.-based workers for the position in question.
    • Please note that labor certification is difficult to obtain in this category. In addition, due to the long backlog (Only10,000 visas are provided per year), a petitioner could expect to wait many years before being granted a visa under this category.
Visa Process
The EB-3 Visa process is lengthy, very time consuming and requires specific knowledge and experience. If the EB-3 Visa is not the appropriate route for you, there may be other options. Consulting with an experienced EB-3 Visa Attorney at Chammas Jurado PC will make the EB-3 Visa Process easier and less time consuming for you. Contact Chammas Jurado | The Immigration Attorneys for a free consultation.

EB4, Special Immigrants

The EB4 category is cap-subject, meaning that there are only a limited number of immigrant visa numbers in the EB4 category available for allotment each fiscal year. In order to file for an immigrant visa as an EB4 special immigrant, an individual must have the Form I-360, Petition for Ameraisan, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant, filed on his or her behalf. The Form I-360 instructions contained detailed information on the requirements for status in the various special immigrant categories.

The EB-4 visa is specified as an employment-based green card for special immigrant religious workers. It is generally intended for members of a non-profit religious denomination in the United States, however, the category can cover a broad range of applicants such as:

  • Broadcasters
  • Iraqi and Afghan translators
  • Iraqis who have provided aid to the U.S.
  • Employees of an International Organization
  • Members of Armed Forces
  • Employees of the Panama Canal
  • Physicians
  • Retired employees of NATO-6
  • If NATO-6 employee is deceased, spouse and children are still eligible

If you need help determining if you qualify for an EB-4 Visa, contact Chammas Jurado | The Immigration Attorneys today. We have a vast amount of experience in immigration law and we provide advanced and comprehensive support on all immigration issues.

TN, NAFTA Professionals

A TN visa is an employment-based non-immigrant visa that permits citizens of Mexico and Canada to legally work in the U.S. in certain enumerated professions such as accountant, engineer, nurse, and architect to name a few.

To qualify, the individual must have a job offer from a U.S. employer in one of the professions listed in the NAFTA agreement and carry the required credentials for that position. Certain limitations on this type of visa exist and the application process if different for citizens of Canada than it is for citizens of Mexico.  Our qualified legal team can guide you through the process based of the specifics of your situation to attain this visa status. 

If you need help determining if you qualify for a TN Visa, contact Chammas Jurado | The Immigration Attorneys today. We have a vast amount of experience in immigration law and we provide advanced and comprehensive support on all immigration issues.

R1, Temporary Religious Worker

The R1 visa enables foreigners who work in religious organizations to come to the United States in order to perform duties in line with their religious occupation.

The requirements of the R1 are the following:

  1. The applicant must be a minister of religion who is currently working in a religious vocation or occupation (whether paid or unpaid).
  2. The applicant must prove that they have been a member of a bona fide non-profit religious organization for two years prior to application.

Duration

  • The Initial visa may be granted for up to 30 months (2.5 years).
  • One extension may be added for an additional 30 months (2.5 years), making a maximum total stay in the U.S. of up to 5 years.

If you need help determining if you qualify for an R1-Visa, contact Chammas Jurado | The Immigration Attorneys today. We have a vast amount of experience in immigration law and we provide advanced and comprehensive support on all immigration issues.

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