Working legally in the United States can be a challenge but can be accomplished if you have the right legal support and understand all your options
Your American Dream
America is a country of immigrants. Historically, most of that immigration has happened via family ties. Individuals have sought better opportunities in this blessed land many times escaping poverty and/or persecution. With time, these individuals bring family members to enjoy the freedoms and opportunities this country offers. However, family immigration is not the only way to enter the USA legally. Recently some visas and legal mechanisms that enable professionals and business owners to set their enterprises in the USA have come in the spotlight.
Type of Visas available: H, L, TN, EB5
Most have heard of the alphabet soup of visas such as H, L, TN, F, etc. Below is a short overview of the different options individuals have to come as a professional or an entrepreneur and make their American Dream reality. This is not legal advise, it is for general information purposes. Always consult with an attorney and contact me if you have any questions.
H1 and H2 are visas for workers that are being hired either aboard or in the country. It had been popular with tech companies like Microsoft, Tata, Infosys, Intel and more. Many would get hired after graduating from a university in the USA (where they may be attending under an F visa for students). H1 is intended for highly skilled employees, such as doctors, scientists, engineers, etc.
H2 is for less skilled workers, such as farm hands, hotel receptionists, cleaning crews and similar. I had been an H-1B visa recipient so I understand, first hand, the processes, and challenges of highly qualified immigrants in the USA.
This visa is also called Intracompany Transferee Executive or Manager. A typical use for this visa is for transferring employees from one foreign subsidiary to the USA. The key is that there needs to be common ownership or control between the entities in the two countries.
TN or Free Trade.
It is used to bring workers from Canada or Mexico to the USA as part of the trade agreements between the 3 countries. It is for highly skilled professionals.
Trader E-1 visa.
This visa is intended for individuals residing in countries that have a trade treaty with the United States. This allows the business person to come in and engage in business that furthers the commerce between the two countries.
Investor EB-5 visa.
This is the infamous visa can be perceived as *buying a green card*. For an amount of money that varies from $500,000 to $1,000,000, depending on the region you want to invest the money, you can be given a temporary green card if within some time the investment produces a minimum of a direct number of jobs.
All these visas have their requirements, duration and benefit limitations to other family members.
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