Work Authorization Sponsorship

Immigration expertise to support your international workforce.


Access to the best talent in the world is a critical asset for any business and can make the difference between a good hire and a great hire. When facing the complex U.S. immigration system, your company needs a legal partner with the expertise to simplify the process.  At ILG, we have in-depth experience in securing work authorization for professionals in classifications such as B-1, E-1, E-2, E-3, F-1 OPT, F-1 STEM OPT, H-1B, H-1B1, H-4 EAD, J-1, L-1A, L-1B, L-2 EAD, M-1, O-1A, O-1B, O-2, P-1A, P-1B, P-2, P-3, Q, and TN, among others.

ILG will help you find immigration solutions so you can recruit and develop the talent your company requires. We have decades of experience getting approvals for our clients, allowing them to access a global talent pool others can’t. ILG can bring these results to your organization and make international hiring a strength of your business.  Further, our services are affordable and we can tailor an immigration program that maximizes value to your organization.  ILG works with companies of all sizes, from startups to Fortune 500 members, and across all industries.  As a specialist in U.S. immigration law, which is governed by federal law and not state law, we can provide services to employers nationwide.

Contact us today to discuss your current immigration needs.


What Nonimmigrant visa categories are available?

Nonimmigrant visas enable temporary workers and visitors to enter the U.S. for a specific period, only for the purpose associated with their nonimmigrant classifications. The most common types of nonimmigrant classifications include:

B-1: Enables travelers to enter the U.S. for business activities not including employment, such as trainings, meetings, or conferences. The initial period of stay is 1 to 6 months. Eligible travelers may forego applying for the B-1 visa if they are eligible for the Visa Waiver Program (ESTA).

E-3: Enables citizens of Australia to work in the U.S. in a specialty occupation position with a U.S. employer, meaning the role requires the U.S. equivalent of a bachelor’s degree at a minimum. E-3 applications may be applied for directly at a consulate abroad with an approved Labor Condition Application. Workers may stay for an initial period of 2 years with indefinite extension.

H-1B: The most common temporary employment visa, the H-1B allows workers to fill specialty occupation positions for a maximum period of 6 years. Positions must meet wage requirements outlined in a Labor Condition Application, The number of new H-1B workers is restricted to 85,000 per year (20,000 for U.S. Masters; 65,000 for bachelors). In most cases, the number of applicants exceeds this limit, requiring a random selection during the first week of April each year.

H-1B1: This category has qualification criteria similar to the H-1B, however this category is limited to applicants from Singapore or Chile. 6,800 visas within the 65,000 H-1B numerical limit are reserved for H-1B1 applicants, and unused spots are rolled over to the following year. Applicants may apply directly for a visa at a consulate or apply through USCIS, and may apply at any time, not just during the first week of April. H-1B1 workers are authorized to work for indefinite 1 year periods, but should not intend to seek permanent residency.

L-1: The L-1 visa enables organizations to transfer employees from a foreign office to a U.S. office to work in an executive or managerial role (L-1A) for up to 7 years, or a role which requires specialized or advanced knowledge (L-1B) for up to 5 years. Employees must have worked abroad for a U.S. employer’s foreign parent, subsidiary, affiliate, or branch office for at least one year. Individual cases are filed with USCIS, but employers with three or more foreign and domestic offices, a substantial workforce, or annual U.S. sales of at least $25 million may request a blanket approval from USCIS, allowing employees to apply for an L-1 visa directly with a consulate.

O-1: Enables individuals who possess extraordinary ability in science, education, business, or athletics (O-1A) or the arts, motion picture, or television industries (O-1B) enter to enter the U.S. for an initial period of 3 years, with subsequent 1 year extensions as deemed necessary to accomplish the initial event or activity. The O-1 requires an advisory opinion for a peer group or labor organization if one exists. The O-1 requires an offer of employment, or in the case of sponsorship by an agent, an itinerary of events and activities for the requested period.

TN: Enables citizens of Canada or Mexico to enter the U.S. for temporary employment in a specific occupation if they meet the requirements of that occupation.  Citizens of Canada may apply directly at a port of entry and do not require a visa stamp. Citizens of Mexico must obtain a visa stamp before entering the U.S. Initial periods of stay are granted up to 3 years, and indefinite extensions are allowed.

This list in not comprehensive and only contains general information. Additional requirements may apply. You may also be eligible for another type of visa that is not listed here.

How long can an employee stay in temporary status?

Your length of stay depends on which type of nonimmigrant visa classification you have. In some cases, when a maximum period of stay is associated with the visa, you may recapture time spent outside of the U.S. to extend your authorized period of stay. Your length of stay may also be shortened due to the expiration of your passport or the limited period of time USCIS believes your services are actually needed. In any case, your I-94 date of expiration controls how long you may stay in the U.S., not the expiration date of your visa stamp or the I-797 approval notice.

What happens to the employee when they no longer work for my company?

If the employee is in H-1B, H-1B1, L-1, O-1, TN or E nonimmigrant status and employment is terminated before the expiration of the authorized period of stay, they are allowed one grace period up to 60 days during each validity period to extend, change, or otherwise maintain status. No work authorization is granted during this period. If they are not eligible for the grace period, they should exit the U.S. immediately. Failure to maintain status could make subsequent visa applications and adjustment of status applications difficult. If an ex employe accrues more than 180 days of unlawful presence, they may be subject to a 3-year bar from re-entering the U.S. Unlawful presence of more than 1 year can result in a 10-year bar.

Can family members accompany an employee to the U.S.?

Yes. Immediate family members (spouse and unmarried children under 21) may accompany an employee in dependent status.  Their stay is controlled by the employee's (the principal applicant’s) maintenance of status. Some visa types allow spouses to apply for employment authorization, such as the E-2, E-3, H-1B, and L-1.

Can an employee apply for a green card?

Yes, however the employee should consider the requirements of their nonimmigrant visa status. Some nonimmigrant visas allow dual intent, meaning they may intend to seek temporary employment and permanent residency at the same time. The H-1B and L-1 allow dual intent. If they have a pending or approved I-140 or I-485 petition, their ability to travel on an H-1B or L-1 visa during this period will not impact these applications. On the contrary, if they are on a visa which does not allow dual intent, subsequent applications for a nonimmigrant visa, or an extension of temporary status, may be denied if they have a pending or approved I-140 or pending I-485. Further, if they need to travel internationally while their I-485 is pending, their application is considered abandoned if they exit the U.S. without first being granted advance parole.

My company has never sponsored a visa before – can ILG guide us through that process?

Yes! ILG has helped many companies establish their immigration policies and sponsor their first visas. We can provide the guidance you need to get started and grow with you as the needs of your immigration program change.

We have an office in another country. Can we bring an employee from that office to the United States?

Yes! The L-1A and L-1B nonimmigrant visa categories are for foreign professionals who have worked with a company abroad for at least one continuous year, either in a managerial, executive, or specialized knowledge capacity. ILG can file individual L visa petitions for specific employees, as well as “Blanket” petitions for your entire organization. Contact our office for eligibility assessment and filing requirements.

What immigration costs would our company be responsible for?

Certain immigration costs can be paid by the employee while others must be paid by the employer. For example, an employee may pay for premium processing service or their spouse’s dependent visa costs, but the employer must pay for the underlying petition.  ILG will work with you to set a policy of what costs your company will cover, and which costs will be at the discretion of your employees.

Can my company sponsor an H-1B visa?

Yes! The H-1B is a nonimmigrant visa category for highly educated foreign professionals to work in “specialty occupations” that require at least a bachelor’s degree or the equivalent. Each year in April, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services holds a lottery for new H-1B applicants with an allotment of 65,000 visas, and 20,000 additional visas for foreign professionals who have graduated with a master’s degree or doctorate from a U.S. institution of higher learning.  ILG can guide you through the entire process, from eligibility assessment to filing and approval.

Can ILG still help me if my company is not located near one of your offices?

ILG provides individualized immigration counsel to clients across the country. We have industry-leading case management software, so your employees’ immigration details are always at your fingertips, and we have the ability to conduct face-to-face meetings with your team and employees as needed.

What is an O-1 Extraordinary Ability visa and how can I file for one?

O-1 is a nonimmigrant visa category for individuals who possesses extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, or who has a demonstrated record of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry. Applicants must show that they are in the small percentage at the top of their field and have been recognized for their high level of achievement.  Although the eligibility criteria for the O-1 visa are high, ILG has a successful track record of getting O-1 visa approvals for its clients in a variety of different fields.

Can my company sponsor an employee’s green card?

Yes! ILG has been helping employers navigate the green card sponsorship process since 2001, and we have the expertise to help your company enable its employees to live permanently in the United States. ILG will ensure that the process is as quick and efficient as possible so your employees don’t wait for their green cards longer than they have to.

What size companies does ILG take as clients?

ILG works with clients that have as few as five foreign national employees, and as many as two thousand. Because ILG offers tailored service options, we can provide immigration program solutions for a wide range of organizational needs.

How does ILG handle the transition of taking over the immigration process from another law firm?

ILG has a proven process that makes transitioning away from your current immigration law firm as seamless as possible. First, we will work with you to understand the strategy that works best for your organization, including which cases to take over and when.  We then work directly with your existing counsel to gather all employee information, documents, and case details. Finally, ILG will provide guidance on communicating the transition to managers and employees and can conduct one-on-one meetings with stakeholders as needed.

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