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Nonprofit organizations and H-1B visas

Businesses are not the only entities that may wish to add individuals from other countries into their workforce. Nonprofit organizations sometimes seek to hire foreign workers.

Some special issues can be present for nonprofits when pursuing work visas for individuals from other countries that they wish to hire. This is because, in certain employment immigration situations, nonprofits are covered by different rules than most entities. One program this is the case for is the H-1B visa program.

Under the H-1B program, entities can seek out temporary work visas for specialty workers they wish to hire.

One area where the H-1B program treats certain nonprofits differently from other entities is in its cap rules. There is a yearly cap on how many H-1B visas can be issued. However, certain types of nonprofits are among the entities that can be exempt from this cap. Nonprofits that generally qualify for the cap exemption include nonprofit research organizations and nonprofits connected to institutions of higher education.

These two types of nonprofits recently received another type of special treatment in regards to the H-1B program. They were among the cap-exempt entities that recently got added to the list of organizations that the premium processing option for H-1B petitions has resumed being available for. For many other H-1B petitioners, premium processing remains under temporary suspension.

The special immigration rules that apply to certain nonprofits is among the things it can be important for nonprofits to be aware of when they are looking to bring in foreign workers to help their organization. It is one of the many things that could impact what routes a nonprofit may want to pursue in its efforts to achieve its overall employment immigration goals. Immigration lawyers can assist nonprofits with staying informed on such issues.

Source: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, “USCIS to Resume H-1B Premium Processing for Certain Cap-Exempt Petitions,” July 24, 2017

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