What is employment-based immigration?
It’s one of the various methods available to enter or emigrate to the Unites States. It requires that the intending immigrant have either a job offer, an employment contract in place, a certain set of skills, or a particular occupation.
What are the most common types of employment-based visas?
- B-1: Temporary Visitors for Business
- Under this visa type the foreign national cannot engage in productive employment nor receive remuneration in the United States, but can meet with colleagues or clients, attend conferences and engage in similar activities
- E: Treaty Traders and Investors
- Must be coming to the United States to engage in substantial trade, including trade in services or technology, in qualifying activities, principally between the United States and the treaty country; or develop and direct the operations of an enterprise in which you have invested a substantial amount of capital
- F: Students in Academic Programs
- Foreign nationals engaged in academic study at an accredited U.S. college or university may be eligible to engage in work related to their studies
- H-1B: Foreign Nationals in Specialty Occupations
- Used by U.S. employers to hire foreign nationals who possess at least a bachelor’s degree, or equivalent work experience, who will hold a professional occupation in the U.S.
- H-2A: Nonimmigrant Agricultural Workers
- Allows agricultural employers who anticipate a shortage of domestic workers to bring nonimmigrant foreign workers to the U.S. to perform agricultural labor or services of a temporary or seasonal nature
- H-2B: Nonimmigrant Workers in Temporary Positions (seasonal workers)
- Permits employers to hire nonimmigrant workers to temporarily come to the U.S. and perform non-agricultural services or labor based on the employer’s temporary need
- L-1A: Intracompany Managers and Executives
- Allows a U.S. organization to transfer an executive or a manager from a parent company, subsidiary or other affiliate abroad to the U.S.
- L-1B: Intracompany Specialized Knowledge
- Authorizes a U.S. organization to transfer workers with special knowledge of the employer’s business, products or services from an overseas parent company, subsidiary or other affiliate to the U.S.
- O: Aliens of Extraordinary Ability
- Used by U.S. employers for foreign nationals who possess “extraordinary ability” in the sciences, the arts, education, business or athletics
- P: Entertainers, Athletes and Artists
- Utilized by U.S. employers for internationally recognized entertainers and athletes to perform at a specific athletic competition as an athlete or as a member of an entertainment group
- TN: Certain Canadian and Mexican Professionals
- NAFTA enables Canadians and Mexicans to enter the United States on B, E and L visas in an expedited manner, and creates a special TN visa for certain Canadian and Mexican professionals who may work for a U.S. employer, be self-employed or enter pursuant to a contract with a U.S. company.
Keep in mind that some of these visas have a wait period, others require labor certification, and some are permanent (lead to green cards) while others are temporary.
If you think you may qualify or be interested in more information about these, then please contact one of our experienced attorneys to ensure adequate guidance throughout this very complex process.