visas for IT workers

Given the wide range of industries and jobs within the United States, several kinds of work permits are available based on a person’s employment background and future goals. It is critical that visa applicants better understand these options before they start the process to prevent application mistakes.

Different Visas for the Technology Sector

Technology workers have plenty of categories to consider. Below is a list of the more common types of visas utilized by IT professionals.

H-1B Visa Category

This category is for “professional/specialty” roles. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services count several computer and information technology positions as “professional/specialty,” such as database administrator, software engineer, system analyst and system engineer.

Computer programmers aren’t always considered under this category. A programmer’s status depends on the programmer’s duties. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the Department of State officially note that they don’t treat programmers who work with business programs the same as those who work with engineering and scientific ones. Yet, their explanation isn’t entirely accurate: The difference between “professional/specialty” and other roles typically depends on how the programmer is using the program. If a programmer is designing/creating a program, supervising other programmers or working in programming theory, the programmer is considered to be in a “professional/specialty” role. Programmers using pre-designed programs or performing in other capacities are typically not considered “professional/specialty” workers.

For more information about the H-1B Visa Category, please reference:

L-1 Visa Category

Executives and managers at software companies from around the world that need to work within a subsidiary in the United States as the leader of a project, division or the entire subsidiary can do so with an L-1A visa. An L-1B visa is used for Internet Technology professionals who must work at a subsidiary because their unique knowledge about a company’s marketing, products, research or another area is needed for a project.

For more information about L-1 visas, please reference:

E Visa Category: E-1 and E-2 Visas

E-1 and E-2 visas work best for IT professionals that come from a country where the government has a significant treaty and/or investment with the United States.For more information about E visas, please reference:

TN Visa Category

Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), software professionals from Canada and Mexico who need to work in the United States in a computer systems analysis, engineering and/or management consulting role should consider the TN visa.

Computer systems analysis doesn’t involve any special requirements. If you are an engineer, you must have an engineering or related degree. If you are a management consultant, your background must include at least 5 years of field work or a Bachelor of Science degree and the position must be temporary and/or a role in a consulting firm.

Consultations Are Available!

We understand the stress caused by the visa application process and welcome the chance to help you with achieving your goals. The immigration attorneys at Pride Immigration Law Firm PLLC have the experience you need to help you achieve a successful outcome with your visa application. Contact us today by phone or contact us online to discuss your unique work immigration situation and/or to schedule a free on-site or phone-based consultation.

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Beeraj Patel, Esq.

Partner at KPPB Law
Beeraj Patel's philosophy is simple - make it easy for talented and ambitious individuals to have access to immigration materials so that they can make the choice which is right for them.

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