H-1B Employee Travel & Sponsorship

H-1B Employee Sponsorship

The H-1B is a nonimmigrant classification used for the sponsorship of international faculty or staff who will be employed at the University of Oregon. The H-1B visa is "employer specific" and "position specific." Thus, employees must obtain a new H-1B visa approval for each new position and employer.

Eligibility Criteria

The H-1B visa allows foreign nationals to temporarily work in the U.S. in specialty occupations for up to six years. Most teaching or research faculty positions are eligible for H-1B sponsorship. Please contact International Scholar Services (ischolar@uoregon.edu) to determine if a position meets H-1B eligibility requirements.

The H-1B visa category has the following key requirements:

  • Applicant must have theoretical and practical application of a highly specialized body of knowledge
  • The position must require a minimum of a Bachelor's degree in a related field
  • Offered wage must meet or exceed the prevailing wage for the position
  • The University of Oregon prepares and files the H-1B petition; prospective employees cannot obtain H-1B visa status on their own

If you hold H-1B or a similar nonimmigrant status, you must notify USCIS of any address change within 10 days of moving. Please see here for more information.

Travel & U.S. Re-Entry in H-1B Status

If you are currently on a UO-sponsored H-1B visa and are planning to travel outside of the U.S., you should take the following items with you on your trip:

  1. Your valid passport
  2. A copy of your H-1B petition as it was submitted to USCIS
  3. The original approval notice for your H-1B status (Form I-797A)
  4. 3 recent pay stubs
  5. Optional: Travel letter from the UO ISSS Office

Process for re-entering the U.S. from abroad

You are required to have a valid H-1B visa in your passport to return to the U.S. from all countries except for brief trips to Canada & Mexico (see below). Visas can only be obtained at a U.S. Consulate/Embassy abroad.

  • Before applying for the H-1B visa at a U.S. Consulate/Embassy abroad, review the U.S. Consulate/Embassy website where you will apply for the visa to see if they require documents in addition to those listed below.   
  • When renewing your visa, anticipate delays, especially if you will be traveling during holiday or peak travel seasons. Security checks can delay visa issuance by several weeks.

To obtain a visa, U.S. Consulates/Embassies will generally require that you:

  1. Submit the DS-160 Nonimmigrant Visa Application (DS-160 tips)
  2. Pay the nonimmigrant visa application fee
  3. Make an appointment to interview for the H-1B visa at the nearest U.S. Consulate or Embassy. The consulate will not schedule an appointment for you.
  4. Bring the following documents with you to your interview:
    • Passport (valid at least 6 months into the future)
    • Original Form I-797A Notice of Action (Approval Notice)
    • A copy of your H-1B petition as submitted to USCIS
    • Most recent UO pay statements (last 3 months)
    • Original/certified educational documents, CV and publications
    • J-1 waiver documents, if previously subject to the two-year home residence requirement
    • Visa application confirmation page
    • Visa application fee payment receipt

NOTE: Canadian citizens do not need to apply for a visa.

Important steps to take after returning to the U.S. from traveling abroad

  1. If you have an electronic I-94, retrieve and print your I-94. To access your record you will need your passport. Go to https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/I94/#/home. For more information, see the I-94 Fact Sheet.
  2. Verify that the following information is correct on the I-94.
    • Your name should appear as it is written in your passport
    • The appropriate visa classification (H-1B or H-4)
    • The end date on the I-94 should match the H-1B approval notice (Form I-797A) or be extended for 10 additional days beyond the end date of the H-1B approval notice
    • If your I-94 is shortened due to your passport expiring prior to the I-797A, your status will end on the date marked on the I-94 record rather than the H-1B approval notice.
  3. Contact ISSS if there is an error or if the end date on the I-94 does not match your H-1B approval notice (or the H-1B approval end date + 10 days).
  4. Upon return from travel, document your time abroad on the Recapture Worksheet. The worksheet will make extensions beyond six years less cumbersome, and help ensure all available H-1B time can be requested from USCIS.

Brief Trips to Canada & Mexico

You are permitted to travel to Canada and Mexico for less than 30 days without an H-1B visa in your passport (you still need to take the other documents mentioned above). For detailed information about automatic visa revalidation, please refer to the information provided on the Department of State's website.

Automatic Visa Revalidation

If you will be traveling to Canada or Mexico for less than 30 days, you may be eligible for automatic visa revalidation. This means that you may travel to these countries for less than 30 days and return to the U.S. with an expired visa stamp, provided that you are otherwise admissible. Please confirm your eligibility at the U.S. DOS website.

NOTE: You may need a non-U.S. visa to enter Canada or Mexico. Contact the Embassy’s website that you will be traveling to for visa requirements.