If you are a citizen of another country and want to temporarily work in the United States, you can pursue a variety of visas. To obtain a visa, your prospective employer must submit a petition to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Temporary employment visas allow you to enter the U.S. for a specific period of time and are not indefinite or permanent. Here are some common types of temporary worker visas that are available.

H-1B: Specialty occupations

 This visa permits employment in a specialized area of work. To be eligible for this visa, you must have a higher education degree or equivalent experience. This includes fashion models, government development and research and Department of Defense projects.

H-2A: Temporary agricultural work

 If you are looking for seasonal or temporary work in the agriculture industry, you may seek an H-2A visa. It is limited to nationals or citizens of specific countries. You can only obtain this visa if your work is in the interest of the U.S.

H-3: Training or special education

 The H-3 visa is available if you are seeking training other than academic or graduate medical that is not available in your home country. Common areas of training include:

  • Communications
  • Agriculture
  • Finance
  • Transportation
  • Government
  • Commerce

This visa does not permit or guarantee U.S. employment. The intention is to provide job training for work performed outside of the country.

O-1: Extraordinary achievement or ability

 You may seek an O-1 visa if you possess exemplary ability in the arts, sciences, business, athletics or education, or have a record of notable accomplishments in the TV or movie industry with national or international recognition.

Labor certification and petition

 Some of these temporary visas require your potential employer to secure a labor certification from the Department of Labor. Additionally, these visas are subject to petition approval. Prospective employers file petitions and seek approval from USCIS.