H-1b Visas in Utah

The H-1B is a non-immigrant visa under the Immigration and Nationality Act. It allows employers in the U.S. to temporarily employ graduate-level foreign professionals in specialty occupations for up to six years. The H-1B visa allows immigrants to legally live and work in the U.S. during the six-year period. Specialty occupations include those that require technical or theoretical know-how in certain fields, such as engineering, IT, finance, accounting, science, medicine, architecture, science, and mathematics. Applying for an H-1B is generally quicker and easier than applying for a green card, but the process still requires expertise and substantial evidence to prove the applicant is qualified. You need Buhler Thomas Law, P.C., a Utah law firm that understands H1 visas.

Qualifying for an H-1B Visa

To qualify, the individual must have a bachelor’s or higher degree from an accredited university or college in the specialty occupation. If they are holding a foreign degree, it must be an educational equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree. The foreign worker may also show degree equivalence through work experience (at least 12 years) or other qualifications. The law considers three years of specialized experience as equivalent to one year of college education. In certain areas where state licensure is a requirement, such as in nursing and education, the individual must have passed the licensure exam as well.

H-1B Visa Requirements

Foreign workers are not legally permitted to apply for an H-1B visa for themselves. The employer is required to pay both attorney and government filing fees. The employer must prove that the position they want to fill meets the following criteria:
  • Has a minimum entry requirement of a Bachelor’s degree
  • The job is so complex that it can only be done by someone with a degree
  • The employer requires a degree for an equivalent position
During the six-year period, the employee must submit an H-1B Change of Employer (COE) petition when changing employers to stay in status.

H-1B Visa Process

To start the process, employers should file an H-1B petition with the help of our H-1B attorney in Utah. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) must approve it before the start of the employment date.

What Happens if the Employee Quits or is Dismissed

If a foreign worker holding an H-1B visa is fired or quits from the employer, they must either apply for a change to another non-immigrant status or leave the country. They also have the option to find another employer, which will be subject to an application for adjustment of status or change of visa, or both. Call Buhler Thomas Law, P.C. at 801-691-0604 to start the application process. You may also contact us online through the contact page to schedule an initial consultation.