The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced on January 27 that an additional 20,000 H-2B visas for temporary non-agricultural workers will be available for the first half of 2022, which can be applied for starting on January 28. With this, the DHS will increase the annual limit determined by Congress, which is currently 66,000 workers per year.
According to the secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, with this measure they seek to expand the resources of employers and give them the necessary support to maintain their businesses. 13,500 of these visas will be for workers who are returning to the country or who already had this document in the last three fiscal years. The rest of the visas will be for citizens of Haiti, El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras.
Know the details and requirements to obtain the H-2B visa:
How to apply for the H-2B visa?
The most important thing is that the employer shows that there are not enough American workers who are qualified or available to do the job, that the hiring will be temporary, that the American workers will not be affected, that the call will be made only once and seasonally.
The worker must have a job offer in the United States, prove the skills for employment and ensure the return to their origin before the visa expires. In addition, a visa application fee will need to be paid.
If the citizen is already in the United States legally, the employer can request that the visa be changed to H2-B. If you are outside the country, you must apply for the visa at the consulate of the country of origin.
Documents that may be requested at your consulate appointment
Applicant’s valid passport, accompanying children and spouse, application fee payment receipt, the approved petition receipt number, and a printout of the form to be completed online. Some document that proves the intention to leave the United States may also be requested once the H2-B status expires (it can be a deed, lease or job letter).
How long to work in the United States with the H2-B visa?
This visa is valid for three years, so after this time, the beneficiary must leave the country for three months without interruption and then request this visa again. In addition, you can make use of two extensions of up to one year each, which you must present before they expire.
Which countries participate in the H-2B program?
In total there are 83 countries that can apply for this type of visa. In the Americas, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, the Dominican Republic and Uruguay participate. Spanish citizens are also eligible.
If a country is not on the list, the citizen can petition to seek approval from the secretary of the Department of Homeland Security.
What happens to the relatives of the creditors of the program?
Spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 may enter as nonimmigrants and may not apply for employment.
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