H Visas

H-2B Visas

H-2B visa attorney in Washington DC and Virginia

H-2B visas permit employers to bring foreign workers to the United States to work on a temporary basis in non-agricultural positions. The H-2B visa was specifically designed to fill positions when there is a lack of qualified U.S. workers.


H-2B workers work in a variety of industries, with many workers in the seafood and landscaping industries. Nannies may also qualify for H-2B qualification in certain circumstances, please see our PAGE for more information.
In order to qualify for H-2B classification, en employer must prove that:
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Only citizens of approved countries may apply for H-2B visa as and there is a yearly cap!

For H-2B purposes, temporary need is defined in 4 possible categories:

H-2B Process

Part 1: Temporary Labor Certification

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Part 2: Employer Submits Form I-129 to USCIS

After temporary labor certification, the employer submits for I-129 to USCIS. This petition seeks approval for the specific worker and must demonstrate the prospective employee’s qualifications.

Part 2: Employer Submits Form I-129 to USCIS

After the I-129 is approved, the foreign employee must apply for his or her visa. If the employee is outside of the U.S., he or she will apply through a local U.S. Embassy or Consulate. There is also an option for the employee to directly seek admission to the U.S. with Customs and Border Patrol at a U.S. port of entry.
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H-2B classifications are typically granted for up to the period of time authorized on the temporary labor certification. However, the maximum period of stay in H-2B classification is 3 years. A person who has held H-2B nonimmigrant status for a total of 3 years must depart and remain outside the United States for an uninterrupted period of 3 months before seeking readmission as an H-2B nonimmigrant.

Spouses and Children

A lawful spouse and children under the age of 21 may enter the United States in H-4 status as dependent’s of an H-2B worker. These H-4 holders are eligible to study in the U.S. but may not seek employment authorization.

Special Considerations

In addition to the initial H-2B requirements for USCIS and DOL, H-2B employers are required to maintain records and notify USCIS regarding certain changes in employment. It is very important that any employer that employer H-2B workers understand and comply with these requirements. Please contact the attorneys at ilexlaw, PLLC if you are an H-2B employer seeking help with navigating these requirements.
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