The H-1B and the H-1B1 are the same visas except for the candidate’s eligibility and the duration of the visa process. If we do not precise H-1B1 below, it means it is also valid for H-1B1.
To petition for an H-1B or H-1B1, you, your entity, and the position offered should be eligible.
You should have at least a bachelor’s degree in the specific specialty or an equivalent from an accredited college or university, or you should have 3 years of experience per missing year of study that shows progressively responsible experience to reach a position that minimum requests a bachelor’s degree in the specific specialty because the nature of the duties is specialized and complex and need highly specialized knowledge.
If you are a Chilean or a Singaporean citizen and you meet the condition above, you are eligible for an H-1B1. If you are not a Chilean or Singaporean citizen, but meet the condition above, you are eligible for an H-1B.
Any type of entity can take on the H-1B obligations.
If you have a “general” degree or no degree, the company must be big enough to have a specific department you will work for. For example, if you are in marketing, the company has to have a marketing department you should be affected by.
Cap-exempt entities are:
- Institutions of higher education,
- nonprofit entities related to or affiliated with institutions of higher education,
- nonprofits or U.S. governmental research organizations,
- organizations that require the H-1B employee to work at one of the three categories of employers above.
The H-1B occupations require at least a bachelor’s degree in the specific specialty. The degree requirement is common to the industry in parallel positions among similar organizations or, in the alternative, the occupations require theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge.
The relationship between you and the entity should be an employer-employee relationship (W-2 part-time or full-time, no 1099 contract).
Here are some examples of H-1B jobs (not limited to): mechanical engineer, software engineer, scientist, nurse, physician, professor, teacher, etc.
Length of Stay
H-1B Visa & Employment Duration
The H-1B & H-1B1 usually expires after 3 or 5 years and can be renewed once depending on your country. To see the duration of H-1B for you, go here, select the first letter of your country of citizenship, select your country of citizenship, select “H” in visa classifications, and check the “Validity Period” of the line “H-1B”.
You’ll be tied to working for your employer(s) willing to take on the H-1B obligations. As long as you are employed at your H-1B employer, your H-1B is valid until its expiration date. If you are laid off or if you take the decision to end your current employment, your H-1B visa will stay valid for 10 days after your last day working for your H-1B employer. You’ll have 10 days to transfer your H-1B visa or file a change of status.
Visa & Employment Transfer
As long as your H-1B is valid, you, your new entity, and your new occupation are eligible for an H-1B, your new employer will be able to petition for you right away without going through any lottery. The annual cap and deadline are for new H-1B petition approvals only.
Please note if your first H-1B employer with the one you end employment with is cap-exempt, your new H-1B employer should also be cap-exempt for you to be able to transfer your H-1B.
Transfer to Another Visa
There are no restrictions that restrain you to file for or get another type of visa other than the H-1B when you have a valid H-1B visa or after.
The H-1B is a dual intent visa, meaning it’s an easier path to permanent residency (Green Card).
Compensation & Benefits
You will be paid a minimum 17th Percentile for level 1, 34th Percentile for level 2, 50th Percentile for level 3, and 67th Percentile for level 4.
You can work part-time or full-time for an employer and work for one or multiple employers as long as each job qualifies as an H-1B occupation and each employer is willing to take on the H-1B obligations. As long as you do not end employment with your first cap-exempt part-time employer, your other employers, even those not cap-exempt, will be able to petition for you right away without going through any lottery.
Your spouse and unmarried children under 21 years of age can be your dependents and will be able to come and live in the United States with you under an H-4 visa.
Your spouse and children under an H-4 will be able to study in the United States.
Your spouse under an H-4 will be able to file for an EAD (Employment Authorization Document) after your arrival and will be able to work in the U.S.A.
Process Step by Step
Here is the process in this right order:
- Find a job at an entity willing to sponsor you for an H-1B
- Your entity registers to the cap with you (except for cap-exempt entities)
- Your entity files an H-1B petition with you
- Apply for the H-1B (if you are outside the USA)
- Get the H-1B visa and travel to the USA (if you are outside the USA)
You can not skip any steps. For example, if you haven’t got any job proposal from an entity willing to sponsor you for an H-1B, this entity will not be able to register to the cap or file an H-1B petition with you. And if your entity hasn’t filed any H-1B petition and got approved for it, you won’t be able to apply for the H-1B visa.
Job Search Duration
Your job search duration (step 1 above) will vary depending on your profile and how hard the difficulty is for U.S. employers to hire in your field. In addition, you might need to pass a U.S. license to be authorized to work in your field in the USA.
By using USponsorMe, you’ll save 10x more time, see why here. Our jobs are with H-1B visa sponsorship offered. But more importantly, when you subscribe to one of our USponsorMe+ plans, we will tell you if your project is feasible or not with an H-1B or what is missing in your profile to be feasible, how long we estimate your job search will take, and we will select H-1B jobs for you and send them to you.
The time to get a job by using USponsorMe varies depending on the number of jobs you receive and apply for per month, your fit for the jobs, the quality of your applications, and your performance at job interviews. For example, a USponsorMe member with all licenses and credentials needed, with an American resume and cover letter rewritten by an expert, who applies for 5 or more targeted jobs on USponsorMe weekly and is ready to master job interviews, usually gets the ideal job offer with visa sponsorship within 4 months.
Visa Process Duration
The visa process is from steps 2 to 5 above.
For cap-exempt entities: it takes 4-6 weeks, there is no annual deadline and no cap.
For Chilean candidates (H-1B1) and all other entities: it takes 9-10 months, the only annual cap registration date is in March, and there is an annual cap of 1,400 (currently not reached).
For Singaporean candidates (H-1B1) and all other entities: it takes 9-10 months, the only annual cap registration date is in March, and there is an annual cap of 5,400 (currently not reached).
For candidates with a master’s graduation from a U.S. accredited institution and all other entities: it takes 9-10 months, the only annual cap registration date is in March, and there is an annual cap of 20,000 (currently reached 105%, meaning 5% will not be picked at the lottery), or 65,000 for those who are not first picked among the cap of 20,000 (currently reached 350%, meaning 70% of 5% will not be picked at the second lottery).
For all other candidates and all other entities: it takes 9-10 months, the only annual cap registration date is in March, and there is an annual cap of 5,400 (currently reached 350%, meaning you have a 30% chance to be picked at the lottery). If you are not picked, you can file a petition again for March of next year, and thus every year until you are picked at the lottery.
Fees for an H-1B are estimated to be $17,000 USD. You won’t need to pay those visa fees, they are paid by employers you find on USponsorMe.