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What is the Process of Applying H1B Visa, Cost, Requirements

What is the Process of Applying H1B Visa,Cost, Requirements - Law Office of Ghenadie Rusu


The H1B visa is an employment-based, non-immigrant visa category for temporary foreign workers in New York. For a foreign national to apply for an H1B visa, an US employer must offer them a job and submit a petition for a H1B visa to the US immigration department on their behalf.

What is the Process of Applying H1B Visa, Cost, Requirements, Application Fee and Timeline in 2024

H1B Visa Requirements

If you’re keen on working in New York via the H1B visa, then understanding its complex requirements is crucial.

  • Field of Specialization

Your job offer in the U.S. should be in a profession requiring specialized knowledge—think roles in IT, finance, healthcare, or engineering.

  • Degree Equivalent

A bachelor’s degree or equivalent, relevant to your job, is a non-negotiable requirement for the H1B visa.

  • Experience Matters

Your past education or job experience should align with the specialty occupation you’re eyeing.

  • Fair Pay

The wage offered must be on par with what U.S.-based workers earn in similar roles, ensuring fairness.

  • Labor Approval

Your employer must get a Labor Condition Application (LCA) approved by the U.S. Department of Labor, affirming they’ll comply with fair labor standards.

  • Visa Petition

Lastly, the employer completes the process by submitting the approved LCA and Form I-129 to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). 

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H1B Visa Application Process

H1B Visa Application Process - Law Office of Ghenadie Rusu

The H1B visa application process can be simplified into the following steps, offering an easy-to-grasp overview:

  1. Job Offer: Secure an offer from a U.S. employer who will sponsor your H1B visa.
  2. LCA Filing: The employer submits a Labor Condition Application (LCA) with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).
  3. H1B Quota: Ensure the H1B visa application falls within the annual quota of available visas.
  4. I-129 Petition: The employer files Form I-129 with USCIS, seeking approval for the H1B visa.
  5. Visa Stamping: If approved, the applicant schedules an interview at the local U.S. consulate for visa stamping.

H1B Visa Cost and Application Fee 

H1B Visa Cost and Application Fee in New York - Law Office of Ghenadie Rusu
Image Source: nnuimmigration.com

The cost of the H1B visa is typically borne by the employer. As per USCIS guidelines, the standard filing fee for the Form I-129 is $460.

There are other fees involved too, such as:

  • ACWIA Fee: $750 for employers with 1-25 full-time workers, or $1,500 for employers with 26+ full-time workers.
  • Fraud prevention and detection fee: $500 for new H1B and initial one-time transfers.
  • Public Law fee: $4,000 for companies with more than 50 employees, where over 50% are on an H1B or L1 Visa status.

The H-1B Visa registration fee is $10 for the 2024 season until a specific date, after which it becomes $215. For cases selected in the lottery, there is an additional fee of $1,900, which includes form/support letter preparation and case filing within the required timeframe.

If an applicant is selected for an H-1B visa, the employer must then pay $460 to file Form I-129.

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Timeline for H1B Visa

While exact timelines can vary, typically employers can start filing H1B visa petitions on April 1 each year. The cap is usually reached within a few days, after which USCIS will not accept any further applications.

  • Registration Period: The initial H1B registration period usually lasts for at least 14 calendar days. For the fiscal year 2024-2025, it began at noon Eastern on March 6, 2024, and ran through noon Eastern on March 22, 2024 .
  • Lottery Process: Following the registration period, USCIS runs the H1B selection process on properly submitted electronic registrations. This determines which applicants are eligible to file H1B cap-subject petitions.
  • Filing Period: If selected in the lottery, the period for filing H1B cap-subject petitions must be at least 90 days. Petitioners are required to file paper submissions along with a printed copy of the registration selection notice.

What Is the H1B Lottery?

The H1B lottery is a random selection process used when the number of H1B visa applications exceeds the yearly limit. Here’s how it usually works:

  1. Registration: Every prospective applicant must first register online during the open registration period.
  2. Random Selection: If the number of registrations exceeds the visa limit, the US immigration in New York authorities use a computerized system to randomly select which registered applicants can proceed with the full application.
  3. Two Rounds: The lottery process consists of two rounds. The first is for everyone and includes both the regular quota and applicants with a U.S. master’s degree or higher. After this first round, a second lottery is held for those with U.S. advanced degrees who were not chosen in the first round. Read our latest guide on Common Law Marriage NYC: What You Need to Know in 2024.

Final Words

The H1B visa process can be complex, but with the right information and assistance, it can be navigated efficiently. For professional guidance on applying for an H1B visa, call us at (347) 907-1248 or contact us to schedule a consultation with The Law Office of Ghenadie Rusu.


How much is the H-1B processing fee?

The H-1B processing fee primarily includes a $10 registration fee and a $460 filing fee for Form I-129.

How do I get a H-1B visa for New York?

To be eligible for an H-1B visa:

  • You need to have at least a U.S. bachelor’s degree or something similar.
  • Your degree should be in the same area as the job you’re being offered.
  • There has to be a real job from a company that will control your work.

What is the minimum requirement for H-1B?

To qualify, you must have a job offer from a U.S. employer, and the role must require at least a bachelor’s degree or higher in a related field. You should possess the appropriate degree or equivalent work experience.

How much is U.S. visa fees for H-1B stamping?

The visa stamping fees are typically $185, but this may vary depending on your circumstances.

Is H-1B expensive?

The H-1B application process can be expensive, with costs including government fees, attorney fees, and other expenses, potentially totaling several thousand dollars.

How long does H-1B regular processing take?

Regular processing can take between 3-5 months.

What is the maximum time for H-1B?

The initial H-1B visa duration is three years, with the possibility of a 3-year extension. In most cases, H-1B visa holders can stay for a maximum of 6 years.

What is the success rate of H-1B visa?

Success rates vary year-to-year; the lottery process plays a significant role, and followed by approval of each selected application.

What happens after 3 years of H-1B?

You can extend your H-1B visa for another 3 years, totaling a maximum of six years, assuming you still have a valid job offer and meet other requirements.

Can I stay more than 6 years on H-1B?

In certain cases (e.g., applying for a green card and meeting specific requirements), you may qualify for H-1B extensions beyond the six-year limit.

Is the H-1B interview difficult?

The interview difficulty can vary based on the individual experience. Based on your credentials, job offer, and overall case, the consulate officer will make their decision during the interview.

What should I prepare for the H1B visa interview?

Make sure you have all the required documentation, including your forms, job offer letter, and evidence of the validity of your job offer. Research common interview questions and stay informed about your prospective employer.

How to crack the H1B visa interview?

Prepare well in advance, have all the necessary documentation, and be confident in answering questions about your job offer, employer, and the reasons you are applying for the H-1B visa.

Can the H1B visa interview get rejected?

Yes, H-1B visa interviews can result in rejections if the applicant fails to convince the interviewing officer of their qualification for the visa or if essential documentation is missing.

Read More: What are the Immigration Attorney Fees in New York City?


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