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What Happens When you Losoe your Job with an H-1B Visa?

Workers in the country on H-1B visas can, unfortunately, end up losing the job upon which their status and visa depend. This may happen because the company who helped sponsor them for the visa lays them off, or otherwise terminates employment. In the current COVID-19 situation, reduced hours, job losses, and other changes can occur frequently and without advance notice, and it is advisable to seek advice from experts in corporate immigration law in Houston, TX.

Consequences of Losing H-1B Employment

While there are many advantages to having H-1B status, one disadvantage, as  immigration law makes clear, is that someone’s immigration status is based on, and therefore dependent upon, their employment status.

Once someone ceases to be employed, they have a maximum 60-day grace period in which to either obtain another employer to sponsor them for H-1B employment, to arrange a different visa status allowing them to stay in the U.S., or make plans to head home.

When You Are Supposed to Leave the U.S.

Under  immigration law, if someone is not applying to change immigration status in the U.S., then they have up to 60 days after employment ends to leave, or until their status expires if that is sooner.

A small consolation is U.S. immigration regulation 8 C.F.R. § 214.2(h)(4)(iii)(E), which requires H-1B employers to pay the reasonable costs of transporting H-1B workers back to their country of residence upon termination of employment.

The employer is not, however, required to pay the transportation costs of the employee’s dependents.

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E-1, E-2, and E-3 Investor Visas: What’s the Difference?

The United States is a major center of international commerce, and thus people from around the world travel to the country to work and conduct business. Many of these people enter the country using an E-1, E-2, and E-3 visa. But what are these visas, and how do you know which you should apply for? Here’s what you should know before traveling with trader and investor visas in Houston, TX, or anywhere else in America.

E-1: Nationals from a treaty country may be admitted to the United States on an E-1 visa solely to engage in trade on their own behalf. “Trade” may apply to the trade of goods, services, and banking. To qualify, the trade must be substantial, although quantity of transactions is emphasized over total value.

E-2: Nationals from a treaty country may be admitted to the United States on an E-2 visa when investing a substantial amount of capital in an American business. For example, an individual may travel with this investor visa to set up a business. An E-2 visa may be extended indefinitely, so long as their business in the country remains viable.

E-3: These visas apply only to Australian nationals coming to the United States to work in a specialty occupation. They must have a legitimate offer of employment before applying, as well as the necessary qualifying credentials in their field.

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FAQs about Student Visas

Every year, countless students arrive from around the world to study in Texas and other parts of the United States. Are you or your loved one next? Start learning what you need to know about student visas by reviewing the following FAQs. For further details, contact our Spanish-speaking attorney in Houston.

Who is eligible for an F-1 visa?

F-1 visas are issued to international students attending an academic program in the United States. To qualify, you must have the following:

  • A Sponsoring School
  • A Foreign Residence and the Intent to Return Upon Finishing Your Studies
  • Strong Ties to Your Home Country
  • Sufficient Financial Support

What types of education does an F-1 visa cover?

The F-1 visa is most often used to attend an accredited college or university. However, they may also cover seminaries, conservatories, high schools, elementary schools, and other academic institutions. The course of study must culminate in a degree, diploma, or certificate, and the school must be authorized to accept international students. Talk to a Spanish-speaking attorney if you have questions about whether your intended program qualifies.

How do you start the application process?

Before you start applying for an F-1 visa, you must first be accepted into an accredited academic program. After you’ve secured admission (and the school’s sponsorship), consult with your local U.S. Embassy or Consulate to determine in what order you should complete the student visa application process.

Free Webinar to Teach How to Sponsor an Individual for an H1-B Visa

Toppins Webinar 2 AdvertisementNow is the time to file an H1-B Visa to recruit talent from around the world. Beginning March 1, 2020, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will implement an H1-B visa process change that streamlines the lottery process. 

Toppins & Williams Attorneys at Law, PC, will offer a free webinar called “How to Sponsor an Individual for an H1-B Visa” on Tuesday, February 25, 2020, from 11 a.m. to noon CST. During the webinar, Wilka Toppins, Esq., will teach you step-by-step how to sponsor a foreign candidate for professional employment for a period of up to 6 years and how to take advantage of the new registration process. 

Many employers report having a difficult time recruiting qualified and available candidates for professional positions. Have you considered hiring global talent or, perhaps, recruiting on college campuses for international students in the United States on OPT? Have you considered tapping into existing H1-B candidates that can “port” their visa to your company? The H1-B visa is designed to allow U.S. employers to recruit and employ foreign professionals who wish to perform services in a specialty occupation. Plenty of talented workers are available when you know how to utilize employment sponsorship programs like H1-B. It is easier than you think! 

The “How to Sponsor an Individual for an H1-B Visa” webinar will be interactive, and Attorney Wilka Toppins, Shareholder of Toppins & Williams, PC, will answer your questions about the H1-B visa LIVE! Register for the webinar now.  Email us or call us with any questions: (713) 621-8588.

Toppins & Williams Processes H1-B Work Visas for Project Engineer Mario Monetta

Mario Monetta

Mario Monetta, Project Engineer

“Wilka is not one of the best . . . she is the best!” said Mario Monetta, Project Engineer for Gorham Group, LLC. Toppins & Williams Attorneys at Law processed Monetta’s initial H1-B Work Visa in 2013 and all its subsequent extensions.

At the beginning of the H1-B Work Visa application process, Monetta felt anxious. But then Toppins & Williams stepped in and provided resources, solutions, and support each step of the process. “Wilka, and her team, work in a very professional and efficient way,” Monetta said. “They treated me kindly, giving me all the answers I requested, and making me feel safe and confident. The results of the application were successful!”

Monetta is a Project Engineer with Gorham Group, LLC, which is currently developing USA Industrial Projects and working on Small Scale Fertilizer Projects. Recently, Monetta worked with his team to complete three ammonia plant projects: two in Tennessee and one in Nebraska. He heard about Toppins & Williams from his company CEO, Mrs. Marlene J. Sarres. Monetta said, “Marlene told me: ‘Mario, please, do not worry because I know one of the best lawyers in Houston that shall be helping us to get the work Visa.’ And you know what, Mrs. Marlene was completely right!’”

An H1-B visa is one of the most popular nonimmigrant visas available to aliens. It is designed to allow U.S. employers to recruit and employ foreign professionals who wish to perform services in a specialty occupation. Qualifying occupations are those requiring highly specialized and technical knowledge, such as accounting, computing, education, technology, law, finance, and engineering. Read more about the H1-B visa and its requirements or ask us a question.

Free Webinar to Explore Four Underutilized Alternate Paths to U.S. Permanent Residency

Free WebinarToppins & Williams Attorneys at Law, P.C., is offering a free webinar, “Beyond EB5: Alternatives to U.S. Permanent Residency,” on Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020, from 11 a.m. to noon EST.  The webinar will discuss four useful alternatives to EB5, which used to be the most effective path to U.S. permanent residency. At the end of the webinar, viewers will receive codes for discounted law firm services. Register for the webinar.

For more than 20 years, the EB5 Alien Entrepreneur visa program served as the quickest, most effective path to U.S. permanent residency, even though the investment requirements were steep—anywhere from $500,000 to $1 million, depending on investment location. However, on Nov. 21, 2019, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) implemented a final rule, changing the EB5 program to require minimum capital investments of $900,000 and $1.8 million. These increases have made it more difficult for investors to participate in the EB5 program. More changes to the EB5 may be on the way as well.

In this webinar, we will explore four alternatives to EB5. Many of these paths to immigration don’t require an investment, though they may rely on employment relationships (sponsored employment or self-employment), an individual’s own merit, or perceived ability to expand a business.

Webinar attendees will get codes for the following discounts at the end of the session:
1. 1.10% of the flat fee of the service if the firm is engaged and the flat fee is paid by Feb. 29.
2. Reduced consultation fee (from $250 to $150).

Wilka Toppins, Esq., shareholder at Toppins & Williams, P.C., and Brandy Williams, Esq., shareholder at Toppins & Williams, P.C., will present the webinar. Ms. Toppins possesses 30 years of legal experience as a corporate, business, and immigration attorney, representing both local and international individuals and companies. Ms. Williams has nine years of legal experience in employment and investment immigration with an emphasis on representing employers in the EB2/EB3 (PERM) program as well as NIW, Extraordinary Ability, L1, and EB1C visa programs.

Register for the webinar here. Email us or call us with any questions: (713) 621-8588.