Every year, various organizations in the United States file non - immigrant petitions for thousands of qualified foreign workers to enable them work legally and temporarily in the USA. Unfortunately, there is a 'cap' to the number of visas that can be issued each year! However, it is important to be aware that there are currently 3 types of employers which are exempt from this 'cap' and can also file a petition for a viable candidate at anytime of the year.
1. An institution of Higher Education or its affiliated or related non - profit entities.
For an institution of Higher Education or its affiliated non - profit entities to qualify for the H1B cap exemption, it must meet the criteria as defined in the Higher Education Act of 1965, section 101(a), 20 U.S.C. 1001(a). Such non - profit organizations or entities include, but are not limited to, hospitals and medical research institutions.
The table below shows the top filers of the H1B Visa in the Fiscal Year 2020 under this category.
2. A non - profit research organization.
According to USCIS, “Nonprofit organization or entity” means the organization or entity is:
A. Defined as a tax-exempt organization under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, section 501(c)(3), (c)(4), or (c)(6) (codified at 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3), (c)(4), or (c)(6)); and
B. Has been approved as a tax-exempt organization for research or educational purposes by the Internal Revenue Service.
The National Marrow Donor Program and The Brookings Institution are examples of 2 organizations which qualify under this category.
The image below shows a number of research organizations who have successfully petitioned for the H1-B visa in the past years.
3. A government research organization.
The term “governmental research organization” is defined at 8 CFR 214.2(h)(19)(iii)(C) as “a federal, state, or local entity whose primary mission is the performance or promotion of basic research and/or applied research.” e.g. Fermilab, National Institutes of Health, etc.
The H-1B program allows companies in the United States to temporarily employ foreign workers in occupations that require the theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge and a bachelor’s degree or higher in the specific specialty, or its equivalent. As already stated, the H-1B classification has an annual numerical limit (cap) of 65,000 new statuses/visas each fiscal year and an additional 20,000 petitions filed on behalf of beneficiaries with a master’s degree or higher from a U.S. institution of higher education are exempt from the cap. Additionally, H-1B workers who are petitioned for or employed at an institution of higher education or its affiliated or related nonprofit entities, a nonprofit research organization or a government research organization are not subject to this numerical cap (https://www.uscis.gov/working-in-the-united-states/temporary-workers/h-1b-specialty-occupations-dod-cooperative-research-and-development-project-workers-and-fashion).
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