The H1B1 category was created by the Free Trade Agreements signed with Chile and Singapore in 2003. The 6,800 available H1B1 visas each fiscal year can be an excellent alternative to the H1B visa for citizens of those countries. These visas are deducted from the 65,000 H1B visas that are available worldwide each year. The requirements for the H1B1 are largely identical to those of the H1B.
- There is no requirement that a petition first be filed with the USCIS. Chileans and Singaporeans may apply directly at a U.S. consulate for an H1B1 visa. A petition may be filed with the USCIS to change status to H1B1, or to extend H1B1 status.
- H1B1 status is generally granted in one-year increments, and may be extended.
- The H1B1 classification is available to some applicants who would not otherwise qualify for an H1B visa because they do not possess bachelors’ degrees or the equivalent: Chilean citizens who are offered employment as agricultural managers or physical therapists, and Singaporean and Chilean citizens who are offered employment as disaster relief claims adjusters or management consultants.
- As with the H1B visa, a labor condition application (LCA), certified by the U.S. Department of Labor, is required.
- The spouse and minor children of an H1B1 employee are authorized to live in the United States in H-4 status, and to study, but are not permitted to work.
- Unlike H1B and L visas, H1B1 visas are not considered dual intent visas. Therefore, a person in H1B1 status, who files for permanent residence (commonly referred to as a “green card”) may endanger his/her continued H1B1 status.
What We Can Do for You
The Murthy Law Firm’s Nonimmigrant Department is skilled in preparing H1B1 applications encompassing a wide variety of industries and occupations. Our attorneys are available to consult with both employers and employees to discuss their options and responsibilities.