H-1B Cap Filled. Now What?
Quotas are a fact of life when trying to obtain an H-1B visa status and it doesn’t matter if you have a job offer or not you still have to consider the annual quota. There is no guarantee that even if you have a job offer that you will be in time to be considered for the annual quota has been filled.
Coping Strategies for Alien Workers
For an overseas worker who is expecting to be employed in the US under an H-1B status visa, there is nothing more annoying than finding that the H-1B quota has been reached for the year just after a job offer has been received from a US employer.
The H-1B status visa requires that a potential employee has a minimum of a bachelor’s degree but more and more potential employees are ignoring this option and are opting for the advanced degree exemption cap. Even though it is less than the standard H-1B the number is around 20,000 yearly it takes longer to reach its quota. However, every year the advanced degree cap becomes tighter, as more and more aliens who match these qualifications revert to this pool as the H1B visas cap runs dry If you do have a US master’s degree or even higher, you will qualify for this cap but to take advantage of it you may need to ask your potential employer to file an H-1B petition using the advanced degree category.
Optional Practical Training
OPT meaning Optional Practical Training is another possible option if you are in possession of an F1 visa which is valid. OPT lets a student work in his or her area of study for twelve months, which is followed by 2 months of a grace period which will allow the person to stay in the country legally.
Another possible strategy is to alter your status from OPT to EAD in the absence of an H-1B visa. Applications for green cards are not related to H-1B status and a few Green Card applications including NIW and EB-1a do not require sponsorship by an employer. If your application for I-140 is approved and Green Card visa numbers are still available, you can file an I-485 application and at the same time file for an EAD. The speed for processing an EAD is quite fast which makes it possible to get a valid EAD when the OPT expires.
Return to "The H-1B Visa" to learn more.