Strak Immigration Law

Temporary Business Visa

Visas for Business Personnel:

Business employment visas permit employment in the United States and permit a longer stay than B visas.

H visas include subcategories for, specialty occupations (H-I-B) temporary agricultural workers (H-2-A), skilled and unskilled workers (H-2-B), in occupations for which United States workers are unavailable and trainee visas (B-3). Accompanying family members and spouses may be issued an H -4 visa.

H-I-B visa: Specialty Occupation

The applicant for a specialty occupation visa must have a bachelor's degree or equivalent in experience in a specialty occupation or profession, as well as any proper licenses. The job must require a baccalaureate degree. Positions considered professional include such occupations as accountant, librarian, acupuncturist, and social worker, as well as traditional fields requiring degrees such as engineers, architects, and teachers. The visa has a maximum of six years including extensions. There is an annual quota of 65,000 for visas under this category, and back logs can and do occur.

The employer must offer the same wage he pays others in the job or the prevailing wage in the occupations, whichever is greater. A labor condition application has to be filed with the U.S. Department of Labor by the employer. The employer must pay the worker's ticket horne if he terminates the employment of the H -1-B visa holder prior to the expiry of the visa.

L-l visa: Intracompany Transferee

The L-l intracompany transfer visa permits a company to transfer an executive or manager to its United States branch affiliate or subsidiary for up to seven years, and for up to five years for an employee who has qualifying knowledge of the company's product or systems. As in the matching permanent resident employment based category for multinational executives or managers, the transferring employee must have spent one of the three years preceding entry to the United States in an executive, managerial or specialized knowledge position for the company abroad. He must be coming to the United States to perform similar duties to those performed for the company abroad.

The United States company must have been doing business for one year or longer to achieve an initial three year approval for an L-l visa. For new start-up businesses, the initial L-I visa is approved for only one year, but will be extended for two more three-year periods to make a total of seven years if it is proved that the business meets certain criteria. Once the U.S. business has been in existence for more than one year, is viable, and can afford to pay the salary, an executive or manager (not the individual with specialized knowledge) may "convert" status to permanent residence under the first employment based preference category.