Eligibility for H-1B status depends on two criteria:
The employee must be a "professional" with a Bachelor's degree in a specialty field (or equivalent education and experience); and
The normal requirement for the job is a Bachelor's degree in a specialty field.
For example, the normal requirement for a Chemist is a degree in Chemistry, and the normal requirement for an Electrical Engineer is a degree in Electrical Engineering. However, a person who does not have a degree, but has many years of experience in the field, may still be eligible for H-1B status.
Fast processing is crucial to the H-1B case, since the new employee cannot begin work until the H-1B petition is filed or approved. Normally we can file the petition within a day or two after receiving the necessary information and documents (see, Summary of H-1B Procedure).
The H-1B portability rules make it easy to hire professionals who are already in H-1B status, by allowing the employee to begin work as soon as the petition is filed. Those who are already in H-1B status (or who had H-1B status at any time during the past year) also can avoid the H-1B quota.