H-1B is a non-immigrant visa that allows employers in the US
to find foreigners to fill the job positions for which the employers couldn’t
solicit any Americans with the required skill.
Few key points to note about H-1B visa:
H-1B visa has a minimum salary cap of $60,000 and petitions of the employers
offering salary above the minimum limit is only considered.
This visa allows the employee to stay 3 years in the US and the duration can
be extended to another 3 years.
The employee can buy or sell a place, buy and
win lottery and even apply for green card upon arrival to the US
H-1B visa holders can bring along their family under H-4 visa.
If the H-1B visa holder quits or is dismissed
from the job, he/she should find another
job or transfer to another non-immigrant
status in order to stay in the US
Employers can apply for H-1B visa from April 1st
Employers need get labor clearance and submit
H-1B petition to United States Citizenship Immigration Services (USCIS).
USCIS can accept only 65,000 applicants in regular H-1B quota and additional 20,000 applicants in H-1B master’s degree quota.
What are the proposed changes in the H-1B visa?
There are three bills proposed that aim at changing the
existing H-1B visa. The bills proposed are given below:
Integrity and Fairness Act of 2017 – The minimum salary cap is increased
from $60,000 to $130,000 for H-1B
visa. It also prioritizes small and startup employers’ annual H1B petitions to big
companies and removes the per country cap for immigrant visas each fiscal year.
L1 visas Reform Act of 2017 – This bill aims to reform the Immigration and
Nationality Act to reduce fraud and abuse in certain visa programs for
foreigners working temporarily in the US.
– This bill removes the master’s degree cap on the number of
visas available and also requires the annual salary threshold to rise from $60,000 to $100,000.
These bills have just been introduced in January, 2017 and
still have a long way to go before they become the law.