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H-1B: Specialty Occupational Workers Special Reports and Updates


In response to requests for background information on the characteristics of Specialty Occupation Workers (H-1B) and the top 100 employers using them, the INS published the following reports in June 2000. These reports are available on the Internet at www.ins.usdoj.gov/graphics/services/employerinfo/h1b.htm

I encourage people to review these reports since they can give you insight into H-1B visas, one of the most common visas used by recent college graduates.

1. Leading Employers of Specialty Occupational Workers (H-1B): October 1999 to February 2000 (INS, June 2000)

Highlights. This report lists 102 companies with more than 60 INS-approved petitions. These companies account for 17% of the total petitions approved between October 1999 to February 2000.

The top 6 companies were as follows:

  1. Motorola Inc (618 approved),
  2. Oracle Corp (455),
  3. Cisco Systems Inc. (398),
  4. Mastech (389),
  5. Intel Corp. (367),
  6. Mircosoft Corp. (362).

2. Characteristics of Specialty Occupational Workers (H-1B): October 1999 to February 2000 (INS, June 2000)

Highlights: 81,262 petitions were approved during this period. Japanese nationals accounted for 1,631 of the total H-1B petitions approved during this period.

Computer-related occupations accounted for 54% of the total H-1B petitions. The second most frequent occupation group is architecture, engineering, and surveying (including computer and systems engineers), which accounted for more than 13% of the total H-1B petitions. The third highest group is administrative specialization occupations at more than 8% of the total. This group includes occupations such as accountants and management systems analysts. The complete list is available in the report.

The median annual wage reported by employers for all H-1B workers was $50,000. The median wage ranges from a low of $31,100 for occupations in religion and theology to a high of $130,000 for fashion models.

ADDITIONAL UPDATES REGARDING H-1B PETITIONS

  1. As of December 17, 2000 the INS H-1B "training fund fee" increases from $500 to $1000. This fee is in addition to the $110 INS petition fee.
  2. As of November 24, 2000 the INS California Service Center was processing H-1B petitions for new employment received on September 13, 2000. Aliens, especially those on practical training, should take this long processing delay into consideration in order to prevent unnecessary gaps in INS authorized employment.
  3. Congress is considering adding an additional processing fee for "expedite service." The fee talked about is $1000. Exactly what expedite service means and how it will affect the processing times for normal processing is not clear.

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