The B-1 in lieu of H-1B visa is a niche category whose application should be reviewed extremely carefully in advance. When to consider applying for this project visa for professionals and what requirements must be met is explained below. We will be happy to advise you on this topic and help you with your visa application.

What is the B-1 in lieu of H-1B visa?

As a hybrid of B-1 business visa and H-1B skilled worker visa, the B-1 in lieu of H-1B is not listed as a stand-alone visa category, but must be explicitly applied for with the U.S. consular officer as part of the visa interview process.

The B-1 visa in lieu of H-1B is suitable for individuals with an academic degree who are in the U.S. for a temporary project assignment. Just like all other subcategories and exceptions of the B-1 visa, the B-1 in lieu of H-1B visa does not include work authorization. However, with this special B visa, professionals can work in the U.S. for up to 180 days (at a time or spread out over a year) on a clearly defined project under certain conditions. Holders of a B-1 in lieu of H-1B visa are thus able to perform activities in the U.S. that would actually require a work visa. As the name of the B subcategory implies, the requirements for an H-1B visa are met.

Application for B-1 in lieu of H-1B visa

Application for the B-1 in lieu of H-1B may be considered in some exceptional cases. Among others, the following criteria must be met:

  • The employee is expected to travel to his/her employer's client or U.S. office for a temporary project
  • The applicant holds at least a bachelor's degree related to the U.S. project
  • The planned work coincides with the employment in the home country and also requires the necessary qualifications for the execution of a so-called "Specialty Occupation".
  • The employee must be in a permanent employment relationship

In addition, the requirements for obtaining a B-1 visas (no payment from the US, existing intention to return, sufficient financial resources, etc.).



ATTENTION: Due to massive cases of abuse in the past, some U.S. consulates have become very cautious about B-1 in lieu of H-1B visa applications. Especially in certain countries the application is to be seen critically. We therefore strongly recommend that you conduct an extensive check before applying.

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