Foreign nationals have relied on E-1 and E-2 visas when they wanted to enter New York or other U.S. locations to make investments or engage in trade. The Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations, and Consular Rights with Iran had granted Iranians the ability to apply for these visas. This is no longer the case due to the decision by the U.S. government to terminate the treaty according to a news release from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Some companies in New York may hire foreign students on an F-1 visa that allows them to work for a U.S. company for one to three years as part of what is called the Optional Training Program. Colleges, employers and students alike praise the program, but according to an investigation, some students were "hired" by fake companies that gave employment verification.
Business owners in New York may need to be conscious of immigration law even if they are not actively involved in pursuing visas for their employees. Immigration law can have an impact on regular transactions, and if businesses fail to comply with the requirements of the law, they could be held accountable. According to the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, employers in the United States are prohibited from knowingly hiring or employing workers who do not have permission to work in the country. This means that all employees must have an I-9 form on file with the company.
Many foreign nationals enter New York with B non-immigrant visas. There are two different types of B visas used by people who aren't planning on moving to the United States permanently. The B-1 visa can be used by professionals visiting the country to temporarily participate in business activities. The B-2 visa can be used by tourists who plan to travel in the country for a short time or people who are visiting friends and family.
Foreign nationals may be granted the opportunity to live and work in New York or another state by obtaining a first-preference visa. To qualify for this type of visa, an individual would need to prove that he or she is a multinational executive or an outstanding researcher. An individual who is seeking this type of visa could also obtain it by having an extraordinary ability such as being an elite artist or athlete.
Foreign nationals in New York can get a J-1 visa if they qualify as an exchange visitor under the definition used by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. The J-1 visa applies to some people who are entering the country to work and also to some who are not. People can work under their J-1 visas only by the terms of the exchange regulations.
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.
Optional Practical Training visas allow employers in New York and around the country to hire foreign students and recent college graduates to fill positions that are related to their major field of study. OPT visas give students and graduates an opportunity to receive valuable training and provide employers with highly skilled workers, but recent reports suggest that the program is currently being hampered by excessively long waiting times.
The U.S. is a much sought after destination for highly skilled workers looking for career and professional opportunities. What options do highly-educated foreign nationals have for getting authorization to live and work in the U.S.?