What is an H-1B Visa and Who Qualifies?

H-1B is the most popular work visa in the H class of nonimmigrant visas.  In general, an H-1B visa is for a foreign worker coming to the US to temporarily perform services in a specialty occupation for a US employer. Of paramount concern is i) whether the job is in “specialty occupation,” ii) whether the worker has the qualifications, and iii) whether the employer is a “US employer.”

A “specialty occupation” is simply one where at least a US Bachelor’s degree (or foreign equivalent) in a specific discipline is required for the job. So how do we determine whether a specific type of Bachelors degree is required for the job? Generally, we have to research sources that the immigration service considers authoritative, which specifically state that a Bachelor’s degree in a specific field is required. For example, it is clearly established that a Financial Analyst requires a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration or a related field. In cases where authoritative sources are not clear whether the job requires a specific type of degree, the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) dictates that there are alternate methods to prove that the specific job offered indeed requires a degree.

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Shah Peerally is an attorney licensed in California practicing immigration law and debt settlement. He has featured as an expert legal analyst for many TV networks such as NDTV, Times Now and Sitarree TV. Articles about Shah Peerally and his work have appeared on newspapers such as San Jose Mercury News, Oakland Tribune, US Fiji Times, Mauritius Le Quotidien, Movers & Shakers and other prominent international newspapers. His work has been commended by Congress women Nancy Pelosi and Barbara Lee. He has a weekly radio show on KLOK 1170AM and frequently participates in legal clinics in churches, temples and mosques. His law group, Shah Peerally Law Group, has represented clients all over the United States constantly dealing with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration and Custom Enforcement(ICE) and CBP (Customs Border Patrol (CBP) under the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). This department was formerly known as the Immigration and Nationality Services (INS).