Additional Work Visa Information

Before you can apply for a work visa you must have a valid job offer from your prospective employer in the U.S. who will then apply for a form I-129- Petition for Non – Immigrant Worker (PDF 1.9 MB), with the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) of the Department of Homeland Security.

Once approved, the employer is sent a Notice of Approval, (Form I-797).  No work visa can be issued without this approved petition form.  When you apply for your work visa,  you must present the ORIGINAL Notice of Approval form I-797 to the consular officer.  It should be noted that the approval of a petition does not guarantee visa issuance to an applicant found ineligible under provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

Important information for Out-of-District Applicants:
Please be advised that the consulate does not usually accept applications from non-legal residents of Bermuda. You must seek permission from the consulate prior to making this application in Bermuda and allow the Consulate up to 5 business days to process this request. For more information please go to Out-of-District Applications.  

At least one week in advance of your appointment, you must provide a copy of your I-797 or I-129 via e-mail at hamiltonconsulate@state.gov or via fax at (441) 295-1592.

The categories of work visas are as below:

  • H1A Visa: Registered nurses coming for temporary employment.
  • H1B Visa: Covers two types of temporary employment– those in specialty occupations that require college or advanced degree at minimum entry-level, and artists, entertainers, athletes and fashion models of distinguished merit and ability, along with persons assisting in their performance.
  • H2A Visa: Temporary or seasonal agriculture workers.
  • H2B Visa: Persons coming to temporary jobs that could not be filled by U.S. citizens or residents.
  • H3 Visa: Professional job trainees in an American company or in the U.S. office of a foreign company.
  • L Visa: Managers or executives of multinational corporations transferred to the company’s U.S. office.
  • O Visa: Persons of sustained national or international acclaim in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics coming to the U.S. to work or perform in that field.
  • P Visa: Artists, entertainers and athletes recognized at an international level; artists and entertainers performing under a reciprocal agreement between the U.S. and their country; or artists and entertainers whose performances are considered culturally unique.

NOTE: Athletes and entertainers who do NOT qualify in the O or P categories  must seek H1B status.

  • Q Visa: Participants in international cultural exchange programs for the purpose of providing practical training, employment and the sharing of history, culture and traditions of one’s home country.
  • R Visa: Temporary religious worker (R-1) visas are for persons who want to enter the United States to work temporarily in religious capacities.

Important: You do not need a work visa if your foreign company sends you to the U.S. for short (e.g. 3 months or less) training programs or to conduct business on behalf of your employer, as long as your place of employment remains your foreign company.

Also, spouses and children of H, L, O, and P (not Q) visa holders are eligible to accompany the principal applicant so long as the principal applicant is able to show that he/she will be able to support his/her family while in the United States. Spouse means only those who are legally married, since common-law marriage is not recognized by U.S. immigration law.

Supporting Documents

Supporting documents are only one of many factors a consular officer will consider in your interview. Consular officers look at each application individually and consider professional, social, cultural and other factors during adjudication. Each case is examined individually and is accorded every consideration under the law.

For employment based visas you should bring to your interview:

  • Evidence that establishes your job qualifications, including any university diplomas, resume or CV.
  • Past employer or employers’ detailed statement(s) or actual employment documents, such as company payroll or tax records.
  • Original documents are always preferred over photocopies.

Please note: Consular officers in Bermuda may refuse to issue a visa to H1B applicants if the applicant’s education and/or work experience is solely or predominantly from a country other than the United States or Bermuda. In the absence of U.S. or Bermudian education or work experience, we strongly encourage you to apply from your country of residence.

Please see a more detailed list of suggested documents below:

INTRA-COMPANY TRANSFER

L1: Inter-Company Transferee

  • Printout of DS-160 Confirmation Page with legible bar code
  • Valid Passport (at least 6 months)
  • Older passports containing previous visas
  • Documents substantiating previous legal status in U.S.
  • Reciprocity fee (if applicable)
  • Original or copy of Notice of Approval (Form I-797A or I-797B)
  • Current employment letter indicating the nature of work, duration and salary
  • Recent paystub/pay slips
  • Proof applicant employed 1 out of 3 years abroad by the employer in an executive, managerial, or specialized knowledge capacity
  • Proof employer abroad still exists
  • Waiver of 2 year foreign residence rule if previously under J1 status

L2: Spouse/Child of L-1

Applicants for this visa require:

  • Printout of DS-160 Confirmation Page with legible bar code
  • Valid Passport (at least 6 months)
  • Older passports containing previous visas
  • Documents substantiating previous legal status in U.S.
  • Reciprocity fee (if applicable)
  • Copy of main applicant’s documents
  • Proof of dependent’s relationship to main applicant (must be original or certified copy – if English translation, must be a certified translation)
  • Spouses of L visa holders are authorized employment with an “employment authorized” endorsement from the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services. Note: This requirement does not apply to dependent children.

Please note: Consular officers in Bermuda may refuse to issue a visa to first-time H1B applicants if the applicant’s education and/or work experience is solely or predominantly from a country other than the United States or Bermuda. In the absence of U.S. or Bermudian education or work experience, we strongly encourage you to apply from your country of residence.

TEMPORARY WORKER (DISTINGUISHED MERIT, OTHER THAN NURSES)

H1B: Temporary Worker (Distinguished Merit, Other than Nurse)

Applicants for this visa require:

  • Printout of DS-160 Confirmation Page with legible bar code
  • Valid Passport (at least 6 months)
  • Proof of legal status in Canada (original or certified copy)
  • Older passports containing previous visas
  • Documents substantiating previous legal status in U.S.
  • Original or copy of Notice of Approval (Form I-797A or I-797B)
  • Current employment letter indicating the nature of work, duration and salary.
  • Recent paystub/pay slip.
  • Copy of approved LCA (a labor condition application)
  • If previously under J-1 in U.S., applicant needs waiver of 2 year foreign residence rule.
  • Evidence of qualifications must original or certified copy.