Oxbow Bend, Snake River

Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming

The H-2B Non-Agricultural Visa Program

The H-2B Non-Agricultural Temporary Worker Visa Program allows employers to hire non-US citizens for temporary work if they are able to demonstrate to United States Citizenship and Immigration Services that “there are not enough U.S. workers who are able, willing, qualified, and available to do the temporary work” and that “Employing H-2B workers will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers.” Once an employer is approved to hire H-2B Visa recipients, each prospective employee must also be approved for an H-2B Visa by applying for a nonimmigrant visa through the US State Department.

This program is generally more restrictive than the J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa Program because a) employers have to prove ongoing seasonal needs due to a lack of available US workers and b) the program is capped at 66,000 available visas every year.

The H-2B Program is also a bit more limited in that only citizens from an approved list of eligible countries are allowed to apply. (Visit the USCIS H-2B Program Information page and look for the “H-2B Eligible Countries List” to see if your county is eligible).

Because of the restrictive requirements of the H-2B Program, the majority of the employers found on CoolWorks are not able to hire candidates who currently have been approved for an H-2B Visa or are interested in obtaining an H-2B Visa. For this reason, non-US residents should not apply directly to the employers on CoolWorks unless they state directly in their advertisements that they are seeking H-2B Visa applicants. If the employer does not clearly state their interest in receiving applications from H-2B candidates, then they will most likely not be able to consider non-US candidates.

To learn more about the H-2B Visa and application process, visit the United States State Department page on Temporary Worker Visas.