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By: Richard Herman
The H1B visa is one of the most popular and approachable visas for foreign teachers who are holders of bachelor’s or higher degrees in a specific speciality (or its equivalent) and wish to work and share their knowledge and services with students in the United States. You can always take a look at the in-depth guide to H1B for teachers for more!
In this article, we have gathered everything you need to know about the procedures, eligibility requirements and all of the necessary details you must take into consideration if you want to apply for an H1B visa in addition to how to get the appropriate legal help. Keep reading if you wish to have an overall understanding and find out how to plan your next move!
If you are not familiar with the term H1B visa, then what you need to know first is that it is a program that offers the U.S businesses the possibility to hire professionals from foreign nationalitiesto work in what is called “speciality occupations”. Which is an occupation that demands certain high specialized knowledge both theoretical and practical, and the possession of a bachelor’s degree or higher in a specific speciality (or its equivalent in the U.S).This includes college and seminary teachers/professors as well as primary and secondary school teachers.
- Eligibility Conditions
Eligibility requirements for the H1B visa application include the following conditions:
1. A. Having a bachelor’s degree, or higher, or its equivalent in a field related to the proposed position is the minimum requirement for entering a teaching position at a U.S institution of an educational nature. Another thing worth mentioning is the fact that during the evaluation of a foreigner’s national degree, 3 years of relevant progressive experience in the specified field can count for one single year of college.
1. B. Having the essential license in jurisdictions or institutions where it is required. If you fail to obtain licensure right beforecoming to the United Stated you may show the appropriate documentation from the licensing board proving that you meet all of the conditions for the license but for status in the U.S. or a social security number.
1. C. Your employer has to file for Certified Labor Condition Application (LCA) at the department of labor by which he will guarantee that they will pay you the wage agreed upon which also has to be the same wage paid to other individuals working in the same position.
1. D. Your working conditions provided by the employer must not unfavorably affect the working conditions of other U.S teachers working in the same position or area of employment.
- Period of Admission and Dependents
The initial admission period for foreign teachers for the H1B visa is up to three years with the possibility of being extended for another three years and a total maximum of six years. If you have an H1B visa then your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 years old have the possibility to join you by applying for an H-4 visa.
- H1B Visa Cap
The annual cap for H1B visas is estimated at 65,000 numerical cap, which is why your employer must make sure to verify that the cap is still open and that the numerical limit has not been reached yet at the time of application for the current fiscal year, which lasts from the 1st of October until the 30th of September. Since H1B petitions can only be filed as early as six months before the start date of employment, you can file your petition beginning from the 1st of April.
- H1B Visa Fees
The fees required when applying for an H1B visa are the Following:
- A filing fee of the value of$460.
- The ACWIA fee of $750 for employers who have less than 25 employees and $1,500 for those who have more than 25 employees.
- A fraud prevention and detection fee of the value of 500$.
- The $4,000 fee of the public law specified for the employers who have over 50 employees while at least half of them are working under an H1B visa.
Moreover, you will be required to pay the fees related to obtaining your H1B visa if you are outside the United States at a U.S consulate or embassy:
- $190 DS-160 fee for the H1B visa holder and each H4 holder travelling with them to the United States.
- All of the travel costs.
- $85 fee for the biometric services (if applicable).
Get help from an immigration lawyer
The H1B visa process can be very complicated and confusing as you can see on the step-by-step guide to H1B visa requirements.In addition to that, the ever-changing rules and regulations of the U.S are making the eligibility criteria and requirements increasingly harder and it is becoming more difficult to qualify for an H-1B visa each year. Therefore, it is essential to consider getting help from a good immigration lawyer to ensure that your application process is properly handled from start to end! Start by looking for a good immigration attorney to help you increase your chances of getting a positive outcome and live your long awaited dream of teaching in the United States.
Richard Herman is a nationally renowned immigration lawyer, author, and activist. He has dedicated his life to advocating for immigrants and helping change the conversation on immigration. He is the founder of the Herman Legal Group, an immigration law firm launched in 1995 and recognized in U.S. World News & Report’s “Best Law Firms in America.” He is the co-author of the acclaimed book, Immigrant, Inc. —Why Immigrant Entrepreneurs Are Driving the New Economy (John Wiley & Sons, 2009). Richard’s poignant commentary has been sought out by many national media outlets, including TheNew York Times, USA Today, BusinessWeek, Forbes, FOX News (The O’Reilly Factor), National Public Radio, Inc., National Lawyers Weekly, PC World, Computerworld, CIO, TechCrunch, Washington Times, San Francisco Chronicle and InformationWeek.