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H 2a Visa Summary

H-2A visa

An H-2A visa allows a foreign national entry into the United States for temporary or seasonal agricultural work. There are several requirements of the employer in regard to this visa. The H-2A temporary agricultural program establishes a means for agricultural employers who anticipate a shortage of domestic workers to bring non-immigrant foreign workers to the U.S. to perform agricultural labor or services of a temporary or seasonal nature. In 2015 there were approximately 140,000 total temporary agricultural workers under this visa program. Terms of work can be as short as a month or two or as long as 10 months in most cases, although there are some special procedures that allow workers to stay longer than 10 months. All of these workers are covered by U.S. wage laws, workers' compensation and other standards; additionally, temporary workers and their employers are subject to the employer and/or individual mandates under the Affordable Care Act. Because of concern that guest workers might be unfairly exploited the U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division is especially vigilant in auditing and inspecting H-2A employers. H-2A employers are the only group of employers who are required to pay inbound and outbound transportation, free housing, and provide meals for their workers. H-2A agricultural employers are among the most heavily regulated and monitored employers in the United States. Unlike other guest worker programs, there is no cap on the number of H-2A visas allocated each year.

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