The H-1B is the most popular work visa, and the most heavily regulated non-immigrant classification. It is utilised by US businesses to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise in a specified field. On 3 April US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it has received enough H-1B petitions to meet the congressionally mandated (up for fiscal year 2008. USCIS announced, it had received enough H-1B petitions to reach financial year 2008 H-1B cap and has set the “final receipt date” as April 2 2007. USCIS will reject all cap-subject, H-1B petitions for financial year 2008 received on or after Wednesday 4 April 2007. Although in many cases H-1B status may be the only option to hire new employers in the US, we present the following alternatives. Alternatives to H-1B sponsorship include.

  • Inter-Company Transfers (called L-1 visas) are available to foreign nationals who have worked for a multi-national company outside the US for one continuous year within the three years immediately prior to their transfer to the US.
  • Some multi-national companies will qualify for an L Blanket petition. An L Blanket petition enables an L-1 visa application to be submitted directly to an American embassy or consulate in which the applicant resides, without the necessity of obtaining prior approval from the USCIS. L1 Blanket applications can be filed directly with embassies in the applicant’s country of residence.
  • E1 and E2, treaty trader. The first criterion that must be met for E1 and E2 visas is that an appropriate treaty must exist between the US and the other country