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Table of Contents

How is the H-1B1 visa related to the H1B program?

Who is eligible for an H-1B1 visa?

What are the H-1B1 visa requirements?

How do you apply for an H-1B1 visa?

How long does it take to get an H-1B1 visa?

How long is an H-1B1 visa valid?

What is an H-1B1 visa transfer?

Does H-1B1 status allow you to get a green card?

Streamline your H-1B1 visa application with Deel

What is an H-1B1 visa

The H-1B1 is a temporary nonimmigrant category visa that allows citizens of Chile and Singapore to work in specialty occupations in the United States. It was created in 2003 when the US government signed a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with both countries. 6,800 visas are produced every year – 1,400 for Chile and 5,400 for Singaporean applicants.

H-1B1 visas allow foreign professionals to work in the country and US employers to import talent from Chile and Singapore. The program covers many specialty fields, including architecture, mathematics, engineering, accounting, the arts, law, theology, sciences, medicine, healthcare, education, biotechnology, and business specialties.

See also: How to hire international employees without an entity

The US government prohibits dual intent for the H-1B1. This means candidates may not pursue permanent residence in the country while working on a H-1B1 visa. However, as a multiple-entry visa, the H-1B1 allows holders to travel freely in and out of the country. It is also relatively easy to obtain as applicants do not need to get approval for their petition from the USCIS.

✨ Discover more US visas Deel supports with our free US immigration guide.

The H-1B1 visa is one of several visas provided under the Immigration and National Act. It derives from the H-1B program, which allows US employers to hire foreign workers in specialty occupations. The H-1B program is capped at 65,000 annual visas, 6,800 hundred of which are H-1B1s.

While H-1B visas are available to all eligible applicants, the H-1B1 is reserved for Chile and Singapore residents. However, nationals may also apply for the H-1B, which imposes fewer restrictions on applicants in some instances.

For instance, the H-1B admits professionals into the country for a maximum of 6 years. Applicants do not need to prove nonimmigrant intent. In contrast, the government caps the H-1B1 period of employment at one year. You must also demonstrate that you do not plan to relocate to the US permanently.

Who is eligible for an H-1B1 visa?

In addition to being a Chilean or Singaporean national, H-1B1 applicants must seek to work in specialty occupations. A specialty occupation is one whose minimum requirements include:

  • Highly specialized theoretical and practical knowledge
  • A bachelor’s or higher degree, or
  • A bachelor’s degree equivalent

Nonetheless, you may qualify for an H-1B1 visa without a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent. You would have to be a physical therapist, agricultural manager (Chile), disaster relief claims adjuster, or management consultant (Chile and Singapore).

💡 Deel’s platform offers international employees and their employers a built-in visa eligibility checker and mobility support. Find out if you qualify for an H-1B1 visa with a few clicks and how you can track your application.

If you gain H-1B1 visa status, your spouse and children under 21 can accompany you to the US. They must get H-4 visas and can enroll in school within the country but not work.

See also: Worldwide Visa Support for Dependents: A Guide for Businesses

What are the H-1B1 visa requirements?

For a successful H-1B1 visa application, the employer and foreign worker must meet certain requirements. As an employer, the Immigration and Nationality Act mandates that your international hiring practices not affect the working conditions and wages of current workers in the country. The US Department of Labor, in turn, requires that you pay foreign workers at the prevailing wage rate.

Meanwhile, as a worker, your H-1B1 visa grants you “employer-specific" status. You must work under the conditions indicated in your application and only receive payment from your H-1B1 employer.

With these rules in mind, the H-1B1 application requires the following:
✔️ A certified LCA: Submit a Labor Condition Application (LCA) with the DOL before initiating the H-1B1 application process. The LCA is an attestation that defines the following details related to a job opportunity:

  • Occupation classification
  • Location of employment
  • Your (employer) name and address
  • Offered wage
  • Prevailing wage

An LCA confirms that you will pay the worker a wage equal to or greater than the prevailing wage, as the DOL requires. After the DOL signs and certifies this document, workers can use it in their H-1B1 application.

“Deel’s hands-on-support, its speed to get things done and its global presence are what sets them apart. We use Deel for support with visas, onboarding, paying our international teams and providing them with localized benefits.” — Chantal Madi, Head of People Operations, ImmutableX

✔️ Proof of nationality: H-1B1 employers must provide the DOL with supporting documentation of a worker's citizenship. A copy of the worker’s Chilean or Singaporean passport and tax information will suffice.

✔️ Proof of “specialty occupation” qualification: Because H-1B1 visas are granted for an occupation that requires theoretical and practical application of a body of specialized knowledge, workers must prove they qualify for a specialty occupation. Documents that help with this include:

  • Academic transcripts
  • Diplomas
  • Degrees
  • Work experience letters
  • Professional evaluations
  • Licenses and permits

✔️ Employment documents: In addition to a job letter from an employer, H-1B1 workers must showcase documents proving an employer-employee relationship. These can be copies of written contracts or oral contract summaries. There must be an employer – the government does not grant H-1B1 visas to freelancers or independent contractors.

✔️ Proof of temporary stay: H-1B1 workers must demonstrate nonimmigrant intent. You can do this by showing that you do not plan to abandon your home country residence. Documents to help you do this include deeds, leases, marriage certificates, and estate plans.

💡 With Deel Immigration, preparing and submitting supporting documentation is easy. Our immigration experts onboard you onto our user-friendly platform and assign you a case manager. Your case manager helps you fill out your personal details and upload your documents for a more streamlined application process. Request a demo to learn more.

How do you apply for an H-1B1 visa?

There are two ways to obtain a H-1B1 visa. The employer may initiate the application process while the worker is still in Chile or Singapore, with the worker continuing the process through the consulate in their home country. If the worker is already in the country on another status, the employer may file Form I-129 (Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker) on their behalf.

In most cases, the employer initiates the H-1B1 application process by sponsoring an applicant. They request Form I-797A and LCA certification from the DOL, offer a job position to a Chilean or Singaporean national, and pay the applicable fees.

The employee begins the application process once the Department of Labor approves the LCA certification. This includes submitting the following documents to the consulate:

  • The LCA certification from the DOL
  • A valid passport
  • A job offer and description from the employer
  • A US visa photograph taken within the last six months
  • One copy of the DS-160 Form confirmation page

After the worker submits these documents with their application, they must schedule an interview. Appointments take a while to schedule, so act fast. Familiarize yourself with all the submitted documents, as your interviewer will ask you about them during the interview.

💡 Are you an employer looking to hire talent from Chile or Singapore in the US? Deel’s EOR service includes visa sponsorship support to help you hire employees and acquire visas, even if you do not qualify as a sponsor or have a US entity.

See also: How to Sponsor an employee work visa through the Highly Skilled Migrant (HSM) Scheme

How long does it take to get an H-1B1 visa?

Typically, it takes 4 to 6 months to receive your visa. The H-1B1 visa does not support premium processing, which is why it takes longer to process than the H-1B visa. That said, processing times vary and depend on seasonal fluctuations. Get more accurate timeline information by contacting the US consulate or the embassy where you applied for your H-1B1.

💡 Is your local consulate or embassy taking too long to stamp your H-1B1 visa? Deel Immigration offers consular support to help you get faster appointments.

“Deel enabled us to achieve our mission to reach and expand new markets with a faster turnaround time. I would say it saved us at least 12 to 24 months of effort. I’d recommend Deel to anyone who would like to expand globally and has limited time and resources to build the capability internally.” — Nupur Mehta, VP of Human Resources, Nium“

How long is an H-1B1 visa valid?

The H-1B1 visa lasts 12 to 18 months. However, you can renew it in year increments indefinitely. This is as long as you prove that you are still working and plan to return to your home country. To do this, you must submit pay stubs and your employer the LCA certification. Always apply for an extension several months before your H-1B1 visa expires.

What is an H-1B1 visa transfer?

You can apply for an H-1B1 visa transfer when you want to change to a different visa or your H-1B1 employer. To switch employers, your new employer must obtain LCA certification from the DOL and file Form I-797A, as your previous employer did. To transfer to a different visa, you must go through the application process for that visa from scratch.

Does H-1B1 status allow you to get a green card?

Because the H-1B1 Visa does not support dual intent, you cannot apply to become a permanent resident of the US while on H-1B1 status. If you wish to become a permanent resident, switch to a regular H-1B visa and apply for a green card.

💡 Learn How Deel is reinventing the immigration journey

Streamline your H-1B1 visa application with Deel

Whether you are a US employer looking for foreign talent or a Chilean or Singaporean professional seeking exciting opportunities, the H-1B1 opens many doors.

The USCIS offers 6,800 H-1B1 visas every year. At Deel, we want to help you get one of these precious slots – fast. Our in-house immigration support oversees the visa application process, filing documents, sponsoring applicant visas, tracking approval statuses, and more.

We recently acquired Legalpad, the country’s leading immigration provider. Whatever your H-1B1 needs, trust us to streamline and expedite the process.

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