For foreign nationals residing in New York, there are essentially two types of visas — those that permit the holder to work in the US and those that do not. Temporary work visas allow a foreign national to work for a limited period of time. In some cases, the worker will pursue and secure the visa on his or her own. In other circumstances, the worker’s employer will petition for the visa on that person’s behalf.
The most common category of visa for foreign nationals working in the US is the H type. H-1A visas apply to registered nurses and are a specific response to a shortage of registered nurses nationwide. Specialty or professional occupations are covered by the H-1B visa. To qualify for an H-1B visa, the applicant must have specialized knowledge in a particular field. At a minimum, the applicant must show he or she has earned a four-year college degree. Additionally, the position the applicant is set to work in must require a four-year college degree.
Visas under part H-2 are for workers in agriculture and other fields where there is a shortage of workers nationally. All visas in the H category require that the applicant has received an employment offer and proof of the wages to be paid. An H-2 visa also requires a demonstration that no qualified US citizens were willing or available to do the work.
Congress limits the number of temporary work visas that may be issued. Foreign nationals who are interested in working in the US might want to speak with an attorney. A lawyer who has experience handling business immigration cases may help by putting together and filing the necessary petitions and other documents to pursue a temporary work visa. An attorney also may provide advice regarding the expected timeline or communicate with government officials for his or her clients.