H2B Visa Process

Learn About H2B Seasonal Worker Visa Process And H2B Extension

Applying For H2B Visa

You cannot apply for an H2B visa as an individual. A U.S. employer must sponsor you for an H2B visa.

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Check My Eligibility

A. Obtaining A Prevailing Wage Determination

The U.S. employer must submit Form ETA-9141 through the iCERT portal to obtain a prevailing wage for use with a temporary labor certification application.


B. Applying For Temporary Labor Certification

Once the prevailing wage determination has been received the employer must complete the recruitment phase:

  1. Place a 10 day job order with State Workforce Agency (SWA) in the area of intended employment, The job order can start no more than 120 days before the need. The SWA must be notified that the job order is in conjunction with an H2B filing.
  2. Place an ad in a Newspaper of general circulation in the area of intended employment. Tha ad must be for a minimum of 2 day, one of which is a sunday, and must run during the period of the SWA job order.
  3. Contact all applicants
  4. Prepare a Recruitment Report. The Recruitment Report cannot be completed earlier than 2 days after the end of the SWA job order or 5 days after the last newspaper ad.
  5. Prepare ETA-9142
  6. Submit ETA-9142 and Recruitment Report to DOL National Processing Center in Chicago
  7. Prepare Audit File retaining copies of all documentation Supporting the ETA-9142

The H2B certification is valid for up to 364 days. As temporary or seasonal non-agricultural employment, the work is performed at certain seasons of the year or for a limited time period of less than one year when the employer can show that the need for the foreign worker is truly temporary.


C. Filing The H2B Petition

An H2B temporary worker visa petition is filed on U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Form I-129, along with the Form I-129H supplement and the approved Labor Certification from the U.S. Department of Labor. Your H2B temporary worker visa petition must include:

  1. A valid temporary non-agricultural labor certification.
  2. Copies of evidence that each foreign worker named in the petition meets the minimum job requirements stated in the certification
    Note: The I-129 may include multiple beneficiaries and may include ‘unnamed’ beneficiaries.

D. Applying For The H2B Visa At A U.S. Consulate

To apply for the H2B visa, you must furnish the original or copy of the Notice of Action, Form I-797A or B (the approval notice forwarded to your employer when the petition is approved). Your H2B visa application must include the following documents:

  1. DOS Form DS-160, Nonimmigrant Visa Application
  2. A copy of your passport which is valid for at least six months beyond the period of stay in the U.S. and with at least one blank page
  3. A color photograph showing full face without head covering against a light background. You may wear a headdress if required by a religious order of which you are a member
  4. Proof that you meet the minimum job requirements stated in the labor certification application

Duration of Stay

An H2B visa is usually issued for a period of one year, and can be extended by two one-year extensions for a maximum of three years in H2B visa.


Spouses and Children

Spouses and/or children under the age of 21 who wish to accompany or join you in the U.S. for the duration of your stay can apply for an H4 visa.


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