Navigating Immigration Law

Sophie Alcorn is the Founding Partner at Alcorn Immigration Law and is a Certified Specialist Attorney in Immigration and Nationality Law by the State Bar of California, Board of Legal Specialization. In this guide she lays out different employment-based visa and green card options available to companies seeking to hire international talent, and when to use them. Please keep in mind that this article is educational only and does not replace individual legal advice. Sophie recommends that you speak with an expert attorney for any legal advice to assess your options if you think you’re ready to move forward. Immigration is not a one-size-fits-all process, and putting your best foot forward requires individualized attention!

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Questions covered in this guide: 

What are all of the relevant visa types for employees?

What are all of the relevant green card types for hired talent (employees)?

How should you decide whether to pursue a visa or a green card for an employee?

What are some of the relevant visa and green card options specifically for founders?

Are there certain countries from which immigration is harder or slower? What are the dynamics at play?

What skill sets make it easier to qualify for a green card? What constitutes “extraordinary” of “exceptional” ability?

What does sponsoring an employee entail (in terms of time, cost, and responsibility)?

What does a startup need to do to hire someone who is currently sponsored by another company?

What does a startup need to do to hire someone who is currently on a student visa?

What can you do if you have an employee who didn’t get selected in the H-1B lottery?

What third-party resources should you leverage to successfully and compliantly employ international talent?

What are the most important pieces to get right?

What are the common pitfalls?

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