H-2A Visa for Temporary Agricultural Workers
WHO IS ELIGIBLE?
Eligibility for H-2A Visa:
To qualify for H-2A Visa – Nonimmigrant Classification the petitioner must:
- Offer a job that is of a temporary or seasonal nature,
- Demonstrate that there are not sufficient U.S. workers who are able, willing, qualified, and available to do the temporary work,
- Show that prospective employees are nationals of any of the designated countries with limited exceptions,
- Show that the employment of H-2A workers will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers and
- Generally, submit with the H-2A petition, a single valid temporary labor certification from the U.S. Department of Labor. (A limited exception to this requirement exists in certain “emergent circumstances.”)
- H-2A beneficiaries may stay in the United States for up to three (3) years.
H-2B VISA for NON-AGRICULTURAL WORKERS
WHO IS ELIGIBLE?
Eligibility for H-2B Visa:
To qualify for H-2B Visa nonimmigrant classification, the petitioner must establish that:
- The employment of H-2B workers will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers, and
- There are not enough U.S. workers who are able, willing, qualified, and available to do the temporary work,
- The prospective employees are nationals of any of the designated countries, with limited exceptions,
- Its need for the prospective worker’s services or labor is temporary, regardless of whether the underlying job can be described as temporary. The employer’s need is considered temporary if it is a(n):
- One-time Occurrence – A petitioner claiming a one-time occurrence must show that it has not employed workers to perform the service or labor in the past, and will not need workers to perform the services or labor in the future, or that it has an employment situation that is otherwise permanent but a temporary event of short duration has created the need for a temporary worker.
- Seasonal Need – A petitioner claiming a seasonal need must show that the service or labor for which it seeks workers is: traditionally tied to a season of the year by an event or pattern and is of a recurring nature.
- Peakload Need – A petitioner claiming a peakload need must show that it: regularly employs permanent workers to perform the services or labor at the place of employment, that it needs to temporarily supplement its permanent staff at the place of employment due to a seasonal or short-term demand, and that the temporary additions to staff will not become part of the employer’s regular operation.
- Intermittent Need – A petitioner claiming an intermittent need must show that it has not employed permanent or full-time workers to perform the services or labor and that it occasionally or intermittently needs temporary workers to perform services or labor for short periods.
- H-2B Visa petitioners must also provide a single valid temporary labor certification from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), or, in the case where the workers will be employed on Guam, from the Guam Department of Labor (Guam DOL).
- H-2B Visa beneficiaries may stay in the United States for up to three (3) years.
H-3 VISA TRAINEE OR SPECIAL EDUCATION
WHO IS ELIGIBLE?
Eligibility for H-3 Visa:
To qualify for H-3 Visa nonimmigrant classification, the petitioner must establish that:
- The H-3 visa category allows for foreign nationals coming temporarily to the United States to either 1) receive training in any field of endeavor, other than graduate medical education or training, that is not available in the foreign nationals home country or 2) to participate in a special education exchange visitor training program that provides for practical training and experience in the education of children with physical, mental, or emotional disabilities.
- The H-3 classification is not intended for U.S. employment, it is designed to provide a foreign national with job-related training for work that will ultimately be performed outside the United States.
In order to obtain H-3 classification, a U.S. employer or organization must demonstrate that:
- The foreign national will not engage in productive employment unless such employment is incidental and necessary to the training and
- The proposed training is not available in the foreign national’s native country,
- The foreign national will not be placed in a position which is in the normal operation of thebusiness and in which U.S. citizens and resident workers are regularly employed,
- The training will benefit the beneficiary in pursuing a career outside the United States
H-3 beneficiaries may stay up to:
- Trainee – two (2) years
- Special Education Visitor – 18 months
HOW TO APPLY for H-2A VISA, H-2B VISA, or H-3 VISA:
To begin the petition process employer must:
- Submit The Evidence: Include all required initial evidence and supporting documentation for the Form I-129
- Complete the Form I-129: Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker.Review the form instructions for directions on completing the Form I-12
- Submit the Filing Fee(s): Include the appropriate filing fee with the Form I-129 and biometric services fee (if applicable
- Sign and File the Form I-129: File the petition at the correct filing location according to form instructions.
WHAT HAPPENS AFTER YOU APPLY
Once USCIS receives your Form I-129, we will process your application and you will then receive:
- A receipt notice of your Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, and
- A written notice of a decision.
After the visa petition is approved, you can apply for a H-2A, H-2B, and H-3 visa at a U.S. embassy or consulate. For more information on visa application processing and issuance fees, see the Department of State.