Labor Visas H-2B

h2b labor visas

America is facing an unprecedented skilled labor shortage. According to the Department of Labor, the US economy had 7.6 million unfilled jobs, but only 6.5 million people were looking for work as of January 2019. Luckily, H-2B visas allow employers seeking labor to sponsor foreign workers to obtain the workers they need.

The H-2B nonimmigrant visa is a program that allows employers to sponsor and hire foreign workers to come temporarily to the United States and perform temporary nonagricultural services or labor on a one-time, seasonal, peak load or intermittent basis.

Prospective visa holders and their sponsoring employers must each adhere to certain requirements. First, employers must demonstrate that there is a labor shortage in their industry or geographical area. Further, they must obtain official certification of their intention to bring foreign nationals into the United States and extend formal job offers to all H-2B applicants.

The H-2B visa program permits a stay of up to 10 months for seasonal workers, and longer if the need is a one-time occurrence. You can petition for multiple H-2B workers at one time. There is a cap of 66,000 H-2B visas per year, with 33,000 allotted based on your start date to each half of the fiscal year (October through March, and April through September).

H-2B visas have several key drawbacks. For starters, these credentials may only be renewed for two consecutive one-year terms. After these terms expire, visa holders must leave the United States and reapply for entry. In addition, the application process can be subject to delays and numerical cap restrictions. 

If you need assistance solving your labor shortage, call us to schedule a consultation and learn about your options.