The H-1B1 visa category is available for citizens of Singapore and Chile who are professionals and seeking employment in the U.S. in a specialty occupation that generally requires a person to possess at least baccalaureate or higher degree for entry into the occupation. The visa category was created by U.S. Free Trade Agreements completed between the U.S. and Singapore and the U.S. and Chile, both in 2003.
An H-1B1 applicant must possess at least a baccalaureate degree or equivalent based on a combination of education, training and experience.
The H-1B1 category is also available for certain occupations that are not normally considered specialty occupations: Agricultural Managers; Physical Therapists (Chileans only); Disaster Relief Claims Adjusters, and Management Consultants.
H-1B1 Visa Numerical Limitations (H-1B Quota)
There are 5,400 new H-1B1 visas available for Singaporeans and 1,400 new H-1B1 visas available for Chileans each U.S. government fiscal year.
U.S. employers must first obtain a certified Labor Condition Application (LCA) attesting the employer will pay the minimum required salary for the position as well as other attestations. Once the LCA is certified, the H-1B1 visa applicant may apply directly at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate for an H-1B1 visa. It is not necessary to obtain UCIS approval prior to H-1B visa application.
Validity of H-1B1 Visas
H-1B1 visas are generally valid for 1 year. Extensions can be granted in 1 year increments and, unlike the regular H-1B visa, there is no 6 year maximum for those admitted on an H-1B1. H-1B1 visas can be renewed indefinitely. However, H-1B1 applicants must clearly demonstrate an intent to return to his/her home country and not seek U.S. lawful permanent residence.
The spouse and all unmarried children under age of 21-years old may receive H-4 visas. These family members may attend school in the United States. An H-4 visa holder is not able to work with limited exceptions.