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H-1B Visa Regime gets tough as the USA Plans strict Restrictions on Selection

December 2017, 26
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Indian professionals aiming to work in the US, face tough times. The Department of Homeland Security proposes getting tough on H-1B and is readying to impose rigid restrictions in the process of their selection

An update indicates that DHS may revive An old proposal that requires H-1B petitioners to pre-register for the lottery to gain H1B cap and to submit formal cap requests, only after winning cap numbers. The DHS has also proposed a priority system for allotting H-1B cap numbers, prioritising the highly-paid and top skilled professionals.  This is in harmony with the executive order of the President to put America first and Hire Americans only. Indian IT companies are the most users of H-1B, visas. An expert has said that changes to the H1B cap lottery mechanism are not planned to be announced till Feb-2018. When the changes are announced in the standard process allowing for Notice first and Comment later, the process requires several months. This will not affect many when filing commences in April 2018. In case these provisions are introduced as an emergency rule which relinquishes the notice and comment requirement it will affect the next cap filing season. This would make it difficult for several companies as they will not be able to file cases prepared or they will not file many such cases, as it would make the selection in the new system, very tough.

USCIS manages a lottery system to select applicants in order to meet the caps of 65,000 in general category and 20,000 for exemption by having an advanced degree. Presently the percentage of H-1B cases demanding proof has increased to 41%. Authorities are screening H-1B visa applications more vigilantly than any other time.

The US administration feels that the immigration revamp, by targeting H1B visa holders is to stop H-1B visa fraud and abuse. This protectionist policy will restrict the free movement of talent.

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