Visa Immigration

US Work Visas – All You Need to Know

US Work Visas
Written by Laura

The United States of America is a country that accommodates almost all races of the world, and because of this, many people dream of visiting the country either for work purposes or perhaps tourism.

It is also pertinent to note that the US is a high-paying state with good working environments and this is one of the basic reasons people troop in. 

Talking about US Work Visas, there are only two viable ways through which you can apply or go to the US for work purposes. These are:

  • First of all, as a temporary employee
  • And secondly, as a permanent or sponsored employee

I know you might be probably thinking right now, what the difference could be. I am here to give you a detailed discussion on all you need to know about the US Work Visas. In case you are looking forward to applying for any of the two above, here are the things to bear in mind.

Firstly, the US Temporary Employee Visa is for those who are wishing to go and work for a short period of time. So, an applicant who falls under this category will need a US non-immigrant visa.

Secondly, the US Permanent or Sponsored Employee Visa is for those who would like to permanently reside, work, and be identified as US citizens. These people will of course need a Migrant Visa.

What is the US Temporary Work Visa?

Just as we have described earlier, the US Work Visa is basically meant for those dreaming to go and work temporarily for a particular period of time. While applying for this type of visa, you will need to specify in your employment contract the specific period of time you are going to work in the country. 

As we already know, this type of work visa does not permit foreigners to work in the country permanently.

US Temporary Work Visa

There are different types of US Temporary Work Visa which depend on the purpose and type of work you are dreaming to do. Below we are going to discuss in detail the different types of temporary visas:

  • H1B Visa: Person in Specialty Occupation: This type of work visa is basically meant for people who have devoted much of their time and efforts towards a particular skill in which they are experts. As an applicant, you are expected to present a higher education degree or its equivalent. This may include fashion models, and those who are into government to government research.
  • H1B1 Visa: Free Trade Agreement (FTA) Professional: The US Free trade Agreement is basically designed for the people of Chile and Singaporeans, it took effect on January 1, 2004. This is for those who are wishing to do business in the US. However, children and spouses who are under 21 years of age can also accompany the principal applicant.
  • H 2A Visa: Temporary Agricultural Worker: This type of visa is offered to those who are into seasonal agricultural activities. This is limited to citizens of nominated countries with exceptions that are only determined by US interest.
  • H 2B Visa: Temporary  Non Agricultural Worker: For those applying for temporary or seasonal non agricultural work. This is limited to citizens of selected countries who are into works that are non agricultural but seasonal.
  • H 3 Visa: Trainee or Special Education Visitors: This type of visa is offered to those who are dreaming to travel to the US for the sake of special training (Medical or academic). Also bear in mind that you can only be eligible for this type of visa if the course or training you are applying for is not available in your home country. And also for children who are emotionally, physically or mentally unstable.
  • I Visa: Representatives of Foreign Media: This type of visa is strictly for journalists and those who work in the media or information sector. It is designed to allow them to complete their work in the US.
  • L1 Visa: Intracompany Transferee: This is for managers, executives, or personalities with special knowledge who are working in a parent, branch, affiliate, or subsidiary of the current employer. But that same individual must have been employed by the employer for at least a year.
  • P 1 Visa: Individual or Team Athlete, or Member of an Entertainment: This particular type of visa is designed for those who are into athletes and are looking forward to representing his or her team or country in the US. However, as an athlete, to perform in any athletic competition you need to apply for this kind of visa. This also covers those providing important services to the above individual.
  • P 2 Visa: Artist or Entertainer (Individual or Group): Just like the P 1 Visa, this particular type of visa is for those who are presenting a show under a corresponding exchange program between an organisation in the US and another country. It also includes persons providing crucial services in support of the artist or entertainer.
  • P 3 Visa: Artist or Entertainer (Individual or Group): This is designed for someone who is looking forward to instructing or coaching a team or an organisation that is culturally unique or into a traditional ethnic, folk, or artistic performance. This also includes persons providing essential services for the above individual.
  • R 1 Visa: Temporary Nonimmigrant Religious Workers: This type of visa enables individuals with the intention of travelling to the US to work in a religious organisation. And it is strictly meant for ministers, Pastors, and those who are directly tied to religious activities.
  • TN Visa: NAFTA Workers: This type of visa is specially made for scientists, engineers, teachers, lawyers who are from Canada to work in the US on a temporary basis.
  • O1 Visa:  For Persons with Expert Knowledge: And finally, the O1 Visa is basically those who exhibit extraordinary abilities in science, business, education, athletics, or art.

Qualifications For US Work Visa:

At this juncture, it is pertinent to note that as someone who has the interest to work in the US, there are three basic preconditions you must have to qualify for any of the US Work Visa. 

However, negligence or not being able to meet a single condition may lead to the denial of your visa application at the Embassy.

Have a Job Offer in the U.S

First of all, in order to qualify for a work visa in the US, you must have applied and have been accepted in a work position in a company or an organization that is within the US territory. 

The reason for this is that the US Visa Department will require several documents from the company that is seeking to hire you.

Approved petition by the U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)

This is the most vital requirement you need in order to get your work permit. It is also known as the I 129 document. Here, before applying for your work visa, your employer must have filed a petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker with the USCIS.

Also bear in mind that in as much as this document contributes 80% of your visa processing, there is still a tendency that your visa application can still be denied by the US Embassy. The denial could be due to reasons that remain at their discretion.

Labor certification approval by the Department of Labor (DOL)

The government of the US government needs this certificate to prove that US employers need foreign workers especially for the position you are applying for. This certification ensures that the employer cannot fill those positions with US employees and that the workers will not contribute a negative impact on job opportunities for US citizens in any way.


The above article has shown the most important things to know before applying for a US Work Visa. But still in mind that there are various other situations that may arise during the process of your application. This could be recent policies that were made due to the pandemic.

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