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Ok so after graduation you have up to 2 years of OPT, but I'm not sure how it works in terms of hiring. Please someone explain. Can they hire you for 2 years and then sponsor you for visa afterwards? Or is it still viewed as a hurdle even though you have 2 years of 'eligibility' so to say?

Comments (11)

  • Human's picture

    evilmindbulgaria wrote:
    Ok so after graduation you have up to 2 years of OPT

    I thought OPT is for 12 months only. When did that happen?

    evilmindbulgaria wrote:
    Can they hire you for 2 years and then sponsor you for visa afterwards?

    Yes they can. Usually OPT is only for one year and the company need to submit the H-1B application by April. You are valid to work under H-1B by October. As soon as the H-1B is being approved, the time between it is being approved and October, you still will be able to work (the gap period).

    evilmindbulgaria wrote:
    Or is it still viewed as a hurdle even though you have 2 years of 'eligibility' so to say?

    Smaller firms are not going to sponsor you, no matter how awesome you are. BB, MM, Elite Boutiques have no problems sponsoring you as long as you are good enough to compete with everyone else.

    "I am the hero of the story. I don't need to be saved."

  • asiamoney's picture

    Typical path is to begin working on OPT starting in June/July, and then your firm will either apply for your H1-B that summer or next year after April 1 (H1-Bs are subject to a yearly cap, and depending on volume, this could be hit early or later in the year).

    If you're applying to a BB or a large firm that sponsors international students, then OPT isn't a barrier. However, smaller firms that won't sponsor for H1-B visas won't take a graduate on OPT.

  • In reply to Human
    FlakieBear's picture

    Human wrote:
    evilmindbulgaria wrote:
    Ok so after graduation you have up to 2 years of OPT

    I thought OPT is for 12 months only. When did that happen?

    evilmindbulgaria wrote:
    Can they hire you for 2 years and then sponsor you for visa afterwards?

    Yes they can. Usually OPT is only for one year and the company need to submit the H-1B application by April. You are valid to work under H-1B by October. As soon as the H-1B is being approved, the time between it is being approved and October, you still will be able to work (the gap period).

    evilmindbulgaria wrote:
    Or is it still viewed as a hurdle even though you have 2 years of 'eligibility' so to say?

    Smaller firms are not going to sponsor you, no matter how awesome you are. BB, MM, Elite Boutiques have no problems sponsoring you as long as you are good enough to compete with everyone else.

    OPT is for one year. STEM majors with exceptional talents can get OPT for 1.5 year.

    Power and Money do not change men; they only unmask them

  • mongoose's picture

    Extendable up to 29 months in total.

  • etherlord's picture

    You'll have 12 months of OPT. 18 month extension is for STEM majors working in STEM positions.

    The company/bank will apply for an H1B for you, and in the meantime you'll work for them on OPT until you know if your H1B is approved. Or they will take you on OPT, and then decide to do an H1B for you at some point if you are any good.

    A lot of companies/banks will not hire people on OPTs (and won't bother with H1B either). Anything below Green Card is a hurdle.

  • evilmindbulgaria's picture

    Thanks for the comments! Is there a possibility that they hire you only for the period of your OPT?

  • In reply to evilmindbulgaria
    asiamoney's picture

    evilmindbulgaria wrote:
    Thanks for the comments! Is there a possibility that they hire you only for the period of your OPT?

    If you're asking whether a firm would hire you just for the OPT period without an intention/resources to sponsor your H1-B, I'd say it's unlikely, since they'd prefer to hire someone that won't have to leave after 12 months.

    That said, it's possible that a firm could hire you on OPT, intending to sponsor, but then decide that they don't want to keep you on longer/sponsor your H1-B due to poor performance, hiring needs, etc.

  • etherlord's picture

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  • sarahxu's picture