Working in the U.S. as an
International Student and
Presented by:
Victoria Donoghue, Esq.
Director of International Services
F-1 Status: On-Campus
On-campus employment (up to
20 hours/week) permitted
Full-time on-campus
employment permitted during
breaks and summer
Students must receive work
authorization from International
Services before beginning any
job on campus
F-1 Status: Curricular
Practical Training
After two semesters of full-time
study, a student may engage in offcampus employment for an
internship or practical experience
and must receive course credit for
the employment
CPT instructions and application are
located on the International Services
web site – or contact the front desk
F-1 Status: Optional
Practical Training
Available when a student has
completed his/her course of
Provides students with 12
months of free market
employment in a job related to
their major
STEM students can get an
additional 17 months
A Typical Path to a Green
F Visas (students)
J Visas (research scholars)
H-1B Visas (employees)
Employment Based Permanent
H-1B Visas
Temporary Professional Visas
For Professional-Level workers who are coming
to the US to work for a US employer in a
specialty occupation
– Alien must possess at least the equivalent of
a US Bachelor’s degree AND
– Job offer must require at least a Bachelor’s
– “Three for One Rule”- 3 yrs of work
experience can be substituted for 1 yr of
academic study in order to equate the work
experience to a Bachelor’s
Examples of Specialty
Some occupations in the regulations:
Chemist, biologist, engineers, physicists,
software developers, system analysts,
accountants, economists, teachers,
If an occupation is not in the regulations, is
a Bachelor’s degree normally required?
Period of Validity
Generally valid for a total of 6 years
Time spent outside of the US can be
Some exceptions available where
additional time in H-1B status will be
granted in 3 year increments beyond
the 6 year period
Employer Specific
H-1Bs are employer specific, but
– Concurrent H-1Bs are permitted, and
– H-1Bs are portable
– Part-time employment is permitted
Cap on H-1B Visas
Numerical Limitation: 65,000 annually
Additional 20,000 visas for those with
US advanced degrees
Cap was met for non advance degree
cases on first day of filing for FY 2008receiving over 180,000
Exemptions from the H1B cap
Current H-1Bs seeking extensions or
transfers to another employer (the cap
limits the number of requests for initial
employment that CIS may approve
each year)
Statutorily exempt employers such as
institutions of higher education and
nonprofit research organizations
H-1B Petitions
H-1B petitions include:
– Form G-28
– Form I-129 with H supplements
– Certified Labor Conditions Application
– Supporting Documentation
Supporting Documentation
Petitioner’s detailed letter of support
describing the job duties
Copy of the foreign national’s Bachelor’s
degree and transcripts
Evidence that the individual has obtained
any required license for the proposed
Evidence of the foreign national’s legal
nonimmigrant status
Documentation (cont.)
If the foreign national possesses a
foreign degree, an educational
evaluation must be obtained from a
USCIS-recognized evaluation service
indicating that the foreign degree is
the equivalent of the US degree.
If the 3 for 1 rule is being used,
evidence of the experience
The Labor Conditions
Application (LCA)
Attestations made to the US Department of
Labor (DOL) by an employer seeking to hire
employee(s) as an H-1B worker(s).
Sets forth the number of workers sought,
the occupational classification, the prevailing
wage, the method used to determine the
prevailing wage, and the actual wage rate
LCA must be available for public inspection
within one day of filing the LCA with the
USCIS Filing Fees
I-129- $325
Fraud Fee- $500
Training Fee- $1500 (over 25 employees) or
$750 (less than 25 employees)
Optional Premium Processing Fee- $1225
Legal Fee
H-1B Alternatives
E Visa
L Visa
O Visa
P Visa
R Visa
B-1 Visa
TN Visa
E-3 Visa
H-1B Gap Fillers
Take a long vacation
Temporarily change to visitor visa
Automatic extension of student status
Temporarily change to a nonimmigrant training visa
B-1 Visa in Lieu of an H-1B visa
Extension of OPT from 12 to 29 months for
individuals with STEM degrees employed by an Everify employer
J-1 training visa
Employment Based
Permanent Residence
 Full-time employment
 Attainment of DOL Labor Certification
 Ability to pay
 Availability of Immigrant visa number
1st Preference (EB1):
No Labor Cert Required
Outstanding Professors & Researchers
Aliens of Extraordinary Ability
- Top of their field
EB1 Evidence
Presentations at International
Judging the Work of others
International Prizes
Contribution of Original Research in
the field
2nd Preference (EB2):
Labor Cert Usually Required
Advanced Degree Professional
- Job requires a degree beyond a BA
National Interest Waiver:
NO Labor Cert Required
Seeking employment in an area of
“substantial intrinsic merit”
The benefit will be national in scope
The national interest would be
adversely affected if a labor cert were
3rd Preference (EB3):
Labor Cert Required
Aliens who hold Bachelor’s degrees
and are members of the professions
Aliens capable of performing skilled
Aliens capable of performing unskilled
Procedure for PERM
Position & Prevailing Wage Determination (PWD)
Posted Notice, In-house Media, Job Order, & Advertisements
Recruitment Report
DOL Process
DOL Notice (Approval or Audit Request)
Response to Audit Request from DOL
Final Approval or Denial
Thank You
Please contact our office for further
[email protected]

Working in the US as an International Student and Beyond