Below are some extra commonly asked questions to assist you with your visa/work permit application.
1. How long does it take to obtain a work visa in the United States?
The time it will take you to receive your work visa in the United States will be determined by a variety of variables.
The sort of visa you’ve filed for, your existing circumstances, and even how properly you’ve filled out the documents will all contribute to an easy or difficult procedure.
In most circumstances, the actual application will take three to five weeks to process, and if successful, an applicant will have their travel papers within the next two business days.
2. How long does it take to obtain a work visa in the United States (EAD)?
Unfortunately, EAD wait periods are far higher than visa wait times, with reports ranging from two weeks to five to seven months – and occasionally longer depending on your application and eligibility.
A complaint cannot be filed until you have been waiting for your EAD for at least 75 days.
3. How long will my work permit be valid?
This will, once again, be determined by your circumstances, application, and/or employer. A standard work permit is valid for one year.
Some will be for a period of up to three years.
Work permits can be renewed, but only for a total of six years. After that, if you want to keep working in the US, you’ll need to apply for a Green Card, if you’re eligible.
4. Which visa permits you to work in the United States?
There are several different visas that allow you to work in the United States.
The H-1B visa is the most frequent for temporary foreign employees.
If you’re not sure which sort of visa you need, you may use our official visa wizard to help you decide.
5. Can a tourist visa be changed into a work visa in the United States?
It is feasible to modify the objective of your journey to the United States if you have received a job offer from a US firm. This is known as a “status change.”
However, you cannot “convert” the visa; you must apply for a new one from beginning and verify that you fulfil all of the conditions for this new visa.
You’ll most likely be applying for the H1-B visa, which is the most prevalent US work visa – but if the quota for the year has already been met, you’ll be denied.
Every year on April 1st, the quota opens and is generally filled within a few days.
If you apply on time, your potential employer will petition the USCIS on your behalf for a change of status.
If you are successful, you will need to exit and re-enter the country because you are currently on a tourist visa.
It should also be mentioned that if you entered the nation through the ESTA visa waiver program, you will be unable to complete this process.
The quota opens every year on April 1st and is usually filled within a few days.
If you apply on time, your prospective employer will petition the USCIS for a change of status on your behalf.
Because you are presently on a tourist visa, you will need to depart and re-enter the country if you are successful.
It should also be noted that you will be unable to finish this process if you entered the country under the ESTA visa waiver program.
6. Can you work in the United States with a tourist visa?
If you hold a B-1 or B-2 visa (for business or tourist, respectively), you cannot take employment or begin any type of education while you are in possession of that visa.
This covers paid performances as well as any other performance in front of a paying audience.
Working as a member of a ship’s or aircraft’s crew.
Work in any type of media.
Or seeking to get permanent residency in the United States.
Again, if you want to study or work for a living in the US, you must reapply for the appropriate visa, be accepted for it, then leave and return to the nation before it is lawful for you to do so.
7. How can you find out whether your US visa application has been approved?
Following your visa interview at the US embassy or consulate, you will usually be informed immediately whether or not your application was successful. Officials at the embassy have the ability to approve or refuse your visa application.
If your application is accepted, you will be notified of the following stages and when your travel papers will be returned to you. This may take a few days, and your passport will most likely be held during the procedure for you to pick up later.
If your application is declined, you will be informed of the reasons why. You are not permitted to reapply for the visa, but you may still be eligible for the visa waiver programme or ESTA, so it is worthwhile to pursue that option.
Some visa applications may take significantly longer than others, therefore you should contact the National Visa Centre (NVC) directly for an update on the progress of your specific visa procedure.
8. How should I prepare for a visa interview in the United States?
Preparing for a US visa interview may appear to be a big undertaking, but when broken down step by step, it’s actually rather simple.
It is critical that you have all of your relevant documentation with you and that you complete every form or application to the letter.
Make sure there are no errors, since even a typo or an erroneous date might lead to your application being refused.
The interview will typically consist of a series of questions. These will differ according to the sort of visa you are looking for.
The interview for a K-1 fiancée visa for the intent to marry a US spouse, for example, will be substantially different from that of a B-1 or B-2 visiting visa.
You should conduct considerable study ahead of time to determine the types of questions you may be asked. A quick search yields a plethora of example questions.
The interviewer will most likely ask questions at random, and not everything will be addressed; thus, you should rehearse before your interview date to ensure that all bases are covered and you are fully prepared for whatever they may throw at you.
For example, if you’re merely wanting to get into the visa waiver program, you may look into the probable ESTA questions ahead of time.
Check out this in-depth post on US visa interview preparation if you wish to work in the United States as a British citizen.
9. Can I get further assistance with my visa/work permit applications?
There are several instructions accessible online, as well as the really useful Citizen Path website, which costs a fee for form assistance.
Immigration attorneys are also available for 10 pence, although they can be prohibitively expensive in most circumstances.
Be aware of websites that demand upfront money or appear to be too wonderful to be true. Scams abound, and with immigration being as vital and as difficult as it is, you might be taken advantage of if you are not cautious.
If you do a little searching, it’s not difficult to obtain solid immigration guidance for free.
10. What happens if my application is declined? Will I get refunded my money?
If you are rejected in your initial application for a visa or work permit, you may reapply at a later date. You will be notified why you were not accepted, and you will hopefully be able to address them the next time.
You will not, however, receive your money back – this is a processing charge that everyone must pay for all visas and work permits for the United States.
If you want to reapply, you must pay the costs again with the new application.
11. I operate remotely; do I need a work visa in the United States?
No, however you will still need a visa to enter the nation and can only stay for as long as your visa is valid in your circumstance.
12. Is it legal to work in the United States without a work permit?
Yes, it is conceivable, and there are various situations in which you will be permitted to work in the United States without the requirement for a work visa.
As previously stated, if you operate remotely, such as a freelance web designer, you will not require a work visa.
You can do any work that does not require a social security number or a bank account. Some businesses are more lenient regarding the paperwork you must give to confirm your eligibility to work in the United States.
However, you should proceed with caution in this case. Many of such jobs will be low-paying and may not be entirely legal.
Of course, if you satisfy all of the requirements, you may always apply for a Green Card.
This might be due to family or a spouse in the United States, a permanent work offer or employment, your refugee status, or any other qualifying factor.
Once you have a Green Card, you can simply show it to prospective employers to verify that you may legally work in the United States.