My Life

I’m a research chemist on a one year academic contract here in the US. I had always planned to return home immediately upon completion, but have thoroughly enjoyed my time here (both socially and intellectually) and am considering looking for gainful employment. My question is this, is it a simple matter to change from a J-1 to an H-1 visa? Should i make an issue of my (British) Nationality in applications? If I were to be considered for employment alongside an American for a position with one of the large pharmaceutical companies, would my visa status make me a lot less likely to land a position alongside an equally equipped American candidate, or do these type of companies deal with these visa situations regularly? I don’t plan to stay here permanently. Is it considered a hassle to try to employ an alien, albeit a well qualified one?

I might understand a prospective employer’s reluctance to hire an alien who was unsure of his visa status and who expressed his residency here as temporary.

My visa status is J-1. I am not looking towards naturalisation/permanent residency.