Is it possible to apply for a work visa without guaranteed employment?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Is it possible to apply for a work visa without guaranteed employment?

My friend is applying for a work visa from Europe. He was told from a
businessman that he could most likely request a work visa without
guaranteed authorization from a company. Once he has his work visa he
could find employment. I believe that this is wrong. I have always heard
that a company has to hire the person first and then send proof with the
work visa or request it themselves for that person to receive it. I think i just
do not understand the actual process of how this works. If you could assist
me, that would be wonderful.


Asked on August 17, 2017 under Immigration Law, Washington


SB Member California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Yes this is wrong. You cannot just get a generic work visa.  THe work visa is based on the approved employment-based work visa petition filed by the employer that intends to employ the foreign national.  Only on the basis of that approved petition can your friend apply for the visa that will allow him to work for that employer.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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