What are the types of work visas in the U.S.?

What are the types of work visas in the U.S.?

You want to live and work in the United States. It is part of a dream or goal for many people. A work visa is one way to achieve that goal. There are different work visas that may be available to you.

The type of work visa you need depends on the type of work you do. It can be anything from working on a farm to a more skilled occupation.

What is a visa? What are the different types of visas?

A work visa is a document that gives you permission to travel to, enter and work in the United States legally. Some are temporary and may need to be renewed, while others may be permanent. It all depends on your classification as an immigrant or nonimmigrant worker.

A nonimmigrant works here temporarily. Your visa will have an end-date upon which you will have to leave, but you can apply to have your temporary visa renewed. Conversely, an immigrant worker (permanent visa) is one who is authorized to stay in the U.S. long term.

The kind of work you do and the country you are from are also important factors in which type of work visa would work best. There are different visa classifications based on your occupation, and for some positions, there are limits on the number of people who are allowed in annually to work.

Some temporary visa categories include:

  • H-1B: This category is for those in specialty professions.
  • H-2A: This category is for people who are from chosen countries who work in farming.
  • H-2B: This category is for people who work in the United States seasonally as needed.
  • L-1A & L-1B: This category is for people who are employed with their company abroad for at least a year.

Permanent work visas

For permanent worker visas, you must have an impressive mixture of skills, education and experience with your work. There about 140,000 immigrant visas available annually. Some visas require you to already have a job offer from an employer in the U.S.

Some permanent visa categories include:

  • EB-1: This category is for people with extraordinary abilities like an athlete or manager.
  • EB-2: This category is for people with advanced degrees, who are good in the sciences or arts.
  • EB-3: This category is for workers who are skilled.
  • EB-4: This category is for religious workers.
  • EB-5: This category is for people investing in the United States. The amount of the investment must be $500,000 or $1 million and must employ at least 10 U.S. workers.

There are an abundance of worker visas available. So, no matter what type of work you do, it is good to know what kind of work visa options you have.