The H1-B visa program was created to allow US based organizations to employ foreign based nationals who work in an occupation that requires theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge, and attainment of a bachelor’s or higher degree in the specific specialty (or its equivalent). Most professionals qualify for the program including primary, secondary, and university level teachers.
Eligibility Conditions for an H-1B Visa for Teachers
- The teacher must have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree or it’s foreign equivalent. Regulations permit teachers without a bachelor’s degree to substitute three years of teaching experience as the equivalent of one year of college.
- Teachers are required to possess a license to teach for the jurisdiction where they will be working. If they’re unable to obtain this certification before they arrive in the US, they must provide documentation to the immigration board demonstrating that they meet all of the requirements for a license.
- The teacher’s potential employer must first apply for and been certified with a Labor Condition Application (LCA) from the Department of Labor.
Teachers who are accepted by the program are admitted to live and work in the US for three years. The H1-B visas can be renewed once, allowing the teacher a maximum of six years. The teacher’s spouse and unmarried children can be issued an H-4 residency visa, Department of Homeland Security visas allow dependent spouses to work in the US.
Only a limited number of H-1B visas are allotted each year- the 2015 quota was limited to 85,000. Due to high demand for H-1B visas the allotment is allocated very quickly- 2015’s quota was exhausted in the first five days after the application process was initiated.
Applying for an H-1B Visa for Teachers
Step 1: The teacher must obtain a colour digital photograph that’s a minimum dimension of 600×600 pixels and a maximum dimension of 1200×1200 pixels. The image must be in the JPEG format, and no less than 240 kilobytes.
Step 2: The teacher needs to complete the H1B Visa application form DS160. The document must be filed out online on the Department of State’s website. When the form is complete the website will issue them a 10-digit barcode- this must be printed out as it will be needed during the interview process in Step 6.
Step 3: The teacher needs to pay the H-1B application fee by bank transfer or in-person at certain recognized banks. The fee is good for one year after payment.
Step 4: The teacher schedules an appointment for a visa interview.
Step 5: The teacher needs to go in-person to a Visa Application centre where they will be fingerprinted
Step 6: The teacher goes to an in-person interview at a local US Consulate.
An Immigration Lawyer Can Help You Apply for an H-1B Visa for Teachers
The immigration application process can be very difficult. These days, the rules and regulations make it increasingly difficult to qualify for an H-1B visa. Therefore, if you’re interested in applying for an H-1B visa for teachers, it is essential that your application is handled properly from start to finish. At Visaplace, we have been in the business long enough to know what to do to increase your chances of success.
To get started, please fill out our free online immigration assessment form today!