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    H-2B Visa

    Are you a foreign national with experience in any of the following jobs?

    Wait Staff

    Host Staff

    Housekeeper

    Ski Instructor

    Kitchen Staff

    Cashier

    Food & Beverage Server

    Concierge

    Sales Assistance

    Ski Lift Operator

    Dining Room Attendant

    Lifeguard

    Dishwasher

    Line & Prep Cook

    Bus Staff

    If you answered “Yes,” then you may be eligible for the H-2B visa! The H-2B visa category is for temporary non-agricultural workers (such as the ones listed above). The H-2B visa category allows employers in the U.S. to bring foreign workers to the U.S. to fill temporary jobs when there is a high demand. However, potential H-2B visa applicants must be from an eligible H-2B visa country. Additionally, the U.S. employer must submit a Temporary Labor Certification Application to the Department of Labor (DOL) before the employer can petition for an H-2B visa applicant.

    WHICH COUNTRYS NATIONALS ARE ELIGIBLE FOR H-2B VISAS?

    Effective Jan. 18, 2016, nationals from the following countries are eligible to participate in the H-2B program:

     

    Andorra

    Argentina

    Australia

    Austria

    Barbados

    Belgium

    Belize

    Brazil

    Brunei

    Bulgaria

    Canada

    Chile

    Colombia

    Costa Rica

    Croatia

    Czech Republic

    Denmark

    Dominican Republic

    Ecuador

    El Salvador

    Estonia

    Ethiopia

    Fiji

    Finland

    France

    Germany

    Greece

    Grenada

    Guatemala

    Haiti

    Honduras

    Hungary

    Iceland

    Ireland

    Israel

    Italy

    Jamaica

    Japan

    Kiribati

    Latvia

    Lichtenstein

    Lithuania

    Luxembourg

    Macedonia

    Madagascar

    Malta

    Mexico

    Monaco

    Montenegro

    Nauru

    The Netherlands

    New Zealand

    Nicaragua

    Norway

    Panama

    Papua New Guinea

    Peru

    The Philippines

    Poland

    Portugal

    Romania

    Samoa

    San Marino

    Serbia

    Singapore

    Slovakia

    Slovenia

    Solomon Islands

    South Africa

    South Korea

    Spain

    Sweden

    Switzerland

    Taiwan

    Thailand

    Timor-Leste

    Tonga

    Turkey

    Tuvalu

    Ukraine

    United Kingdom

    Uruguay

    Vanuatu

    A foreign national whose country is not included on this list may only be granted an H-2B visa if the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security determines that it is in the U.S. interest for that foreign national to be granted the H-2B visa.

    WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS FOR AN EMPLOYER TO FILE FOR A FOREIGN WORKER FOR AN H-2B VISA?

    To qualify for H-2B visa classification, an employer must show:

    • That the job is temporary: the employer’s need is considered temporary if the job is for only one-time, for a season, on a peak-load need, etc.;
    • That there are not enough U.S. workers who are able, willing, qualified, and available to do the job;
    • That hiring the foreign worker will not decrease pay for U.S. workers in similar jobs or adversely affect the working conditions of similar U.S. workers.

    WHAT IS THE BASIC H-2B VISA PROGRAM PROCESS?

    The following are the steps for the H-2B visa program:

    1. The employer submits a Temporary Labor Certification application to the Department of Labor (DOL);
    2. After receiving a temporary labor certification, the employer must submit a Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker (Form I-129) form requesting H-2B workers;
    3. Prospective H-2B workers may apply for the H-2B visa with the U.S. Department of State, U.S. embassy or consulate abroad, or U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

    HOW LONG CAN STAY IN THE U.S. ON AN H-2B VISA?

    An H-2B visa holder may remain in the U.S. for the period of time approved on the Temporary Labor Certification, usually no longer than one (1) year. The H-2B visa may be extended in one-year increments. The maximum period of time that an H-2B visa holder can remain in the U.S. is three (3) years. After a stay of the maximum three years, an H-2B visa holder must leave and remain outside the United States for a continuous period of three (3) months, before seeking readmission as an H-2B visa holder.

    CAN MY FAMILY ACCOMPANY ME TO THE U.S. ON AN H-2B VISA?

    Yes. Spouses and unmarried children under twenty-one (21) years of age of an H-2B visa holder may seek admission on an H-4 visa. H-4 dependent visa holders are not allowed to work in the United States.

    CONCLUSION

    If you are a United States employer who is unable to find a suitably skilled worker in your industry, the H-2B visa category can help you hire a foreign worker. Although there are no educational requirements for an H-2B visa, the worker must be from an eligible H-2B visa country. If you are a foreign national and have entered the United States on a different visa, you can change your status to an H-2B if you have an employer who is interested in sponsoring you.

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