For many reasons, the H1B visa is one of the most popular work visas for people coming to work in the United States. To qualify for this visa, an applicant must be hired for a job requiring a bachelor’s degree or higher as an industry standard, hold a four-year bachelor’s degree or higher or its equivalent, and their employer must be able to pay them the prevailing wage. These qualifications protect both the employer and the employee in this arrangement.
Some obvious benefits of being an H1B visa holder include being able to change jobs without loosing one’s visa status, bringing their spouses and dependents to live with them in the US, and holding employers to stringent labor standards to guard against exploitation. Besides these benefits, here are three deeper advantages to this kind of visa.
You can get an H1B visa for a part time job. So long as your job still requires a bachelor’s degree or higher, you can still get H1B visa status and enjoy the freedoms and protections that come along with it. This is a great option for students coming to the United States for education but cannot afford it without also working part time.
Unlike travel visas and other short-term work visas, when you apply for an H1B visa, you don’t have to prove that you intend to return to your country of origin. Many visas require you to prove that you don’t intend to stay in the United States once your visa expires. This means you have to have a certain amount of money in your bank account, strong ties and responsibilities in your country of origin, and other indicators that would prove you don’t tend to stay. With an H1B visa, you don’t have to prove any of this to get approved. In fact, many people intend to use their H1B visa as a gateway to US naturalization and citizenship, and that’s just fine.
A common trajectory for H1B visa holders is obtaining their Green Card. The initial H1B visa is for three years, then visa holders can apply for another three-year extension. After that, employers will often decide to sponsor visa holders for a Green Card so they can continue to live in the United States and work for their company. Since H1B visas allow for families to come and live with the H1B visa holders, this is a great way to introduce and integrate families into a permanent life in the United States.
An H1B visa is the perfect visa for long-term intentions. Whether you’ve decided you want to ultimately get Green Card sponsorship, or if you’re not sure where your career path will ultimately take you, the H1B visa offers a unique freedom and flexibility for you and your family.
Sheila Danzig is the director of Career Consulting International at www.TheDegreePeople.com, a foreign credential evaluation agency. They specialize in difficult cases and RFEs, Denials, NOIDs, 3-year degrees, etc. and offer a free review of all H1B, E2, and I140 education at http://www.ccifree.com/.
This article was written by Rebecca Little