Most workers on H1-B visas in the United States have full-time jobs with one employer. However, regulations allow H-1B visa holders to have concurrent employment, meaning they can work for more than one employer in certain situations. Filed H-1B petitions enable workers to obtain other jobs while still employed with their current H-1B employer. This system is called the concurrent H-1B.
The employer attempting to hire the H-1B worker for a second job must complete the entire H-1B process. They must also convince the USCIS that the employee meets the requirements for the H-1B visa and that the second job qualifies as a specialty occupation. However, the second job does not need to be in the same specialty as the applicant’s current job.
The employer that hires the worker for a second job must pay the prevailing wages for the job code that fits the position and initiate the application. To do this, the employer would file a Labor Condition Application (LCA) that attests to all H-1B requirements.
H-1B employees may try for concurrent H-1B petitions if they already had H-1B petitions approved and if they have entered the United States with a valid H-1B status. There is no specific limit on the number of concurrent H-1Bs employees can have. However, the number of hours the employee would have to work needs to be possible and credible.
It is important to consider that H-1B employees are not allowed to work under contract. However, part-time employees who are not required to have a visa sponsor often work under contract. So, maintaining an employer-employee relationship is essential to sustain concurrent visa statuses. Therefore, it is best to ensure foreign nationals are on the payroll and retain their W-2 as proof of employment.
The USCIS does not require the primary sponsor to know about the H-1B employee’s concurrent employment. However, when the second employer files the H-1B petition for concurrent work, they must select concurrent employment on Form I-129.
Some H-1B applicants wonder if they can keep their second job without working for their primary sponsor. Thankfully, non-immigrants will keep their H-1B status in situations like this, meaning they can keep their second job even without the first. However, applicants must remember that having an approved H-1B petition does not automatic approval for concurrent work.
Employers that hire H-1B visa holders still face a complicated process of completing Form I-9 and maintaining it properly to present to inspectors upon demand. The easiest way to do this is to use an electronic I-9 management tool. This tool makes it easy to fill out I-9 forms consistently and maintain them properly for review at any time.
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