Website Q & A - January 31, 2007

Will I have a problem getting an H-1B visa or not? I have a degree in fashion and am working for a company in my field.

Dear Mr. Lee,

I graduated with a bachelor's degree in fashion design and will be working as an assistant with a U.S. clothing manufacturer. The company has approximately 50 employees and my salary will be $21,000 per year on a full-time basis. I have optional practical training until October 2007 and my employer is willing to sponsor me for the H-1B visa. Can I do it?

Dear reader:

Your degree and employer appear to be a match to allow you to apply for an H-1B specialized occupation visa, but your position is one that would generally not be regarded as professional by U.S.C.I.S. Unless your degree is actually required to do the job, the job would not be seen as a specialized occupation for H-1B purposes. Further your salary does not appear to meet the standards for an H-1B prevailing wage. I suggest that you speak with your employer to see whether it would be willing to give you a more professional position at a higher wage. I note that we have seen situations in which employers intentionally start out new employees very low in the first two-three months to see how they work out before giving them a true professional position. If such is your employer's strategy, the company might be amenable to advancing your promotion in light of your visa status. If the employer is not willing to do so, you might seek other options including looking for another employer.


Copyright © 2003-2012 Alan Lee, Esq.
The information provided here is of a general nature and may not apply to any particular set of facts or circumstances. It should not be construed as legal advice and does not constitute an engagement of the Law Office of Alan Lee or establish an attorney-client relationship.