H-1B status is a non-immigrant, employment-based status which allows foreign nationals to come to the U.S. and temporarily perform services in a specialty occupation. Specialty occupations are defined as requiring the theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge to perform the occupation.
- H-1B status is used to employ professionals temporarily for a maximum period of six (6) years, filed in two (2) increments of no more than three (3) years.
- Each H-1B petition may be for a period of time up to three (3) years; not to exceed six (6) years in total. However, an employer may not sponsor an FN for a period of time that exceeds guaranteed funding. If funding can only be guaranteed for one (1) year, then the hiring department may seek to extend the FNs status each year based on available funding. A petition will not be filed unless the department guarantees funding for the period requested.
- The position must require a minimum of a bachelor's degree and the FN must possess at least a bachelor's degree or its' equivalent in the field in which s/he is seeking employment. FNs with a bachelor equivalent in work experience will be required to provide a credential evaluation, at their own expense, documenting work experience equivalent to a bachelor's degree.
- H-1B status is employer specific; therefore, the FN may only work for the UA who is sponsoring their status. However, the FN may have H-1B status for more than one (1) employer, only if concurrent petitions have been filed.
- H-1B status recognizes dual intent. This means that the FN may apply for permanent residency (PR) while in H-1B status.