How to get H-1B Visas in Las Vegas, Nevada

Nevada employers may recruit foreigners to work for them in the U.S. by sponsoring them through H-1B visas. Eligible foreigners must have a specialized occupation that requires a college degree.  H-1B visas are non-immigrant visas that are valid for a maximum of six (6) years, but it may be possible for the foreigner to stay longer or adjust status to become a lawful permanent resident.  

Below our Las Vegas "H-1B Visa" attorneys answer frequently-asked-questions about specialized occupation visas in Nevada. Click on a topic to go directly to that section.

For information on other work visa options in Nevada, see our article on employment visas.

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1. Can I get an H-1B visa in Las Vegas, Nevada?

Foreigners may be eligible for an H-1B visa if they meet all the following five conditions:

  1. The foreigner has an employer-employee relationship with the employer petitioning for the visa,
  2. The job is related to the foreigner's degrees,
  3. The job must pay the actual or prevailing wage (whichever is more),
  4. An H-1B visa number must be available at the time of filing the application (the annual cap is currently 65,000), and
  5. The job must qualify as a "specialty occupation."

A "specialty occupation" for H-1B visa purposes must fall under one of the following criteria:

  • A bachelor's degree or higher degree is the typical minimum requirement for the particular job; 
  • The degree requirement is common for this type of job, or else the job is so unique that it can only be performed by someone holding at least a bachelor's degree in a field related to the job;
  • The employer normally requires a bachelor's degree or its equivalent for the job; or
  • The specific duties are so specialized that the knowledge necessary to perform the duties is commonly associated with having a bachelor's degree (or higher).

Foreigners who get H-1B visas are typically in such specialized fields as scientific research, IT, finance, law, engineering, health care, architecture, math, or biotechnology. In Nevada, some H-1B visa holders work at the Nevada System of Higher Education, Nevada Solar, and Health Plan of Nevada.

H-1B visas versus other employment visas

H-1B visas have fewer prerequisites than EB-1 visas and EB-2 visas, which requires advanced degrees and/or renown in their occupational field. Meanwhile H-1B visas have higher threshold requirements than EB-3 visas and H-2B visas, which do not necessarily require bachelor's degrees. And unlike H-1B visas, all EB visas extend automatic green card status.

2. How do I get an H-1B visa?

Much of the H-1B application process lies not with the foreigner but with the U.S. employer petitioning on the foreigner's behalf to work in the U.S. First, the employer submits a Labor Condition Application to the Department of Labor. Then the employer files a I-129 Form with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Once the I-129 petition is approved, the foreigner will get instructions for applying for an H-1B visa. The foreigner may then have to go to a visa interview at his/her local U.S. consulate and give his/her biometrics (fingerprints).

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3. How long does it take to get an H-1B visa?

The time frame for getting an H-1B visa varies, but usually between three (3) and six (6) months.

4. How long is an H-1B visa good for?

With some exceptions, an H-1B visa is valid for three (3) years and may be extended for another three (3) years.

5. What does it cost to get an H-1B visa?

The H-1B visa fee is $190.

6. Can my family come with me on an H-1B visa to Las Vegas, Nevada?

Yes, an H-1B visa-holder's spouse and unmarried children under 21 may accompany the visa-holder to the U.S. But if they want to work while in the U.S., they have to apply for an employment visa.

7. Can I study on an H-1B visa in Las Vegas, Nevada?

Usually an H-1B visa holder is allowed to go to school as long as the H-1B visa-holder remains employed according to the terms of the visa.

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8. Can I leave the U.S. on an H-1B visa?

Usually yes, but it is important that H-1B visa holders keep all the papers and documents with them that they showed Customs and Borders Protection when they first entered the U.S. on the H-1B visa. In today's political climate, it is never a sure thing that foreign nationals will be able to reenter the country even with valid visas.

9. Can I get a green card while on an H-1B visa?

Possibly. Although H-1B visas are non-immigrant visas, H-1B visa-holders are allowed to adjust status to lawful permanent residence if their employer agrees to sponsor them.

10. What if I quit or get fired from my job while on an H-1B visa?

The visa-holder may then either find another employer to sponsor his/her H-1B visa, change to a different non-immigrant status, or leave the U.S.

Call a Nevada immigration attorney...

If you are seeking a work visa in Nevada, call our Los Angeles immigration attorneys at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673) for a consultation. We will guide you through the process as quickly as efficiently as possible.

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For foreigners seeking work in California, see our article on California H-1B visa lawyers

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