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H-1B Employees


The H-1B temporary worker immigration status is designated for individuals coming temporarily to the United States to work in a specialty occupation, which is one that requires theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge and attainment of a bachelor’s or higher degree in a specific specialty.”

International Student and Scholar Services within the Center for Global Engagement files all official government paperwork related to H-1B petitions for UT Knoxville employees.

Maximum Validity

  • H-1B visa holders are normally eligible for a total maximum stay of six years.
  • The six-year limit includes time spent on the H-1B visa with another employer.
  • Each H-1B petition may cover a period up to three years.
  • Any number of petitions may be submitted to extend the employee’s status until the six-year limit has been reached.
  • After the individual has spent at least one year outside the United States, it may be possible to begin another six-year period with an H-1B visa.
  • In some cases, extensions beyond six years are permitted, if an application for permanent residence has been initiated. Contact ISSS to discuss this possibility.