H-1B Specialty Workers

About the H1-B visa

The H1-B visa category is a temporary work visa for non-U.S. workers in an occupation that requires at least a bachelor's degree or the equivalent at the entry level. At IUPUI/Indiana University, H-1B status is used for full-time tenure-track faculty, academic researchers, research technicians (RS07 level or higher), and professional staff.

The University does not sponsor part-time H-1B employment unless it is a percentage time appointment (not hourly) and includes benefits.

In order to obtain H-1B status, your hiring department must document the appropriateness of the wages to be paid, the duties and responsibilities of the position to be filled, and your qualifications to fill that position. In addition, your department must assume all business-related expenses for filing the H-1B petition.

Six-Year Maximum

You can maintain H-1B status for a maximum of six years. Your initial H-1B status can be granted for up to three years, and you can renew your status for up to three additional years.

After six years in H-1B status, you must leave the United States for one year before an employer can file a new H-1B petition for you. H-1B status may be granted for longer than six years in limited cases.

Specific Work Limitation

H-1B employees can do only the work that is listed on their H-1B petition. The employer (department), title, duties, and location of the job must match what the petition says. If the employee job changes, the department may need to file a new H-1B petition.

Learn more about how to maintain H-1B status »

Dual Intent and Permanent Residence

H-1B employees may choose to pursue permanent residence in the United States. This is different from other visa categories, which require you to prove that you plan to return to your home country after your program ends. Because H-1B status enables you to come here with “dual intent,” many scholars believe that the H-1B offers an easier pathway to permanent residence than other visas do.

No H-1B Cap for IUPUI

If you are seeking H-1B status through IUPUI, you are not subject to the U.S. Congress’s H-1B cap on the number of H-1B petitions. Universities, research organizations, and some nonprofit organizations are exempt from the cap.

Previous Participation as a J-1 or J-2

If you have been in the United States as a J-1 exchange visitor or J-2 dependent and are subject to the two-year home residency requirement, you have two options. Before you apply for an H-1B, you can either fulfill the requirement or have it waived.

H-4 Dependents

Your spouse and unmarried children who are under age 21 may qualify for H-4 dependent status. This means they can come to the United States with you. They cannot get jobs, but they can be part-time or full-time students. H-4 dependents qualify for in-state tuition rates at IUPUI after they have been in Indiana for 12 consecutive months.