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Work visas Want to discuss about H1B and other work related visa regulations and latest updates?

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Old March 16th, 2010, 01:11 AM
ashdoc ashdoc is offline
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H1-B visa--what you must know

Come April, and its H-1B time again. Beginning April 1, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will start accepting applications for 65,000 H-1B visas for fiscal 2011.

However, the economic turmoil in the past one-and-a-half year has made H-1B visas a hotly debated issue in the US. The year 2009 also saw various attempts to restrict the number and use of H-1B visas through legislation.

In fact, the mounting job cuts made H-1B visas a politically sensitive issue making companies increasingly cautious in applying for these visas. Consequently, for the first time ever the 65,000 H-1B visa quota took as much as almost 9 months to fill in 2009.

However, with the global economic sentiment improving and job market set to boom again, H-1B visas should be back in demand. Here's a ready reckoner on the H-1B visas for all those unanswered questions.

The current annual cap on the H-1B is 65,000 mandated by the Congress. Every year on October 1, USCIS sets aside certain number of H-1B visas for the coming 12 months.

how much is the H1-B quota

The current annual cap on the H-1B is 65,000 mandated by the Congress. Every year on October 1, USCIS sets aside certain number of H-1B visas for the coming 12 months.

This means from October 1, 2009 to September 30, 2010 the quota for H-1B is 65,000. However, for US master degree holders or higher, there is a separate quota of 20,000, taking the total H-1B quota to 85,000.

qualification required

There are certain qualification requirements for applying for H-1B visa. The person applying for H-1B visa must possess a degree equivalent to US bachelor's degree. A person may also qualify for an H-1B visa through a combination of education or specialised training. For example three years of specialised experience is considered equal to one year of college education.

An applicant can also have a US bachelor's or a higher degree from an accredited university. H-1B occupations include architecture, engineering, mathematics, physical sciences, social sciences, biotechnology, medicine and health, education, law, accounting, business specialties, theology and arts.

How to apply

To apply for H-1B visa, one requires a sponsoring US employer. The H-1B Visa is applied only by employer on behalf of an employee.

The employer needs to file a Labor Condition Application (LCA) with the US Department of Labor (DOL). This application must state the position and salary while hiring a foreign worker. Other details related to wage, working conditions, labor conditions needs to be stated.

Once the application gets approved, the employer needs to submit an I-129 Petition for non-immigrant worker, along with related forms and supporting documents to USCIS.

These forms primarily justify that job for which the foreign worker is hired is a "specialty occupation" and requires a highly specialised knowledge. This is as H-1B visa programme is aimed to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise in a specialised field.

What is the duration of the H1-B visa

H-1B visas are valid for a fixed period of 3 years and may be extended to 6 years under certain circumstances. After 6 years, the visa holder must leave the country and spend one year outside the US. After a year, the person can return with a fresh H-1B visa.

However, many H-1B employees during there 6-year stay seek to attain permanent residence status (Green Card).

What if the H1-B worker is fired

Once an H-1B visa holder is fired or laid off or the position terminated, his/her H-1B status ends there and then. This means that the employee must leave the US or obtain any other status to stay within the country.

In many cases for a change of status the person can apply for the B-2 Tourist Visa. This will let the worker to remain in status in the US as a visitor.

In case the job is terminated before the approved stay, the employer of the H-1B visa holder is responsible for paying for the worker's return transportation to his/her foreign residence.

Can H1-B visa holders spouses work

H-1B visa holders can bring their immediate family members (spouse and children under 21) to US under the H4 Visa category as dependents.

However, H-1B visa holders' spouse coming on H-4 (dependent visa) cannot work in the country. An H4 Visa holder can remain in US as long as the H-1B visa holder's status remains legal. An H4 visa holder, however, can attend school, obtain a driver's license and open a bank account.

H1-B tax

H-1B visa holders are taxed as 'resident aliens', which means that they are taxed on income both from inside, and outside the US. H-1B employees categorised as 'non resident aliens' are taxed on income from the US only.

Can another company hire a H1-B visa holder

Yes, this is possible. However, the company wanting to hire an H-1B visa holder needs to file a petition with the USCIS to transfer the H-1B visa to their company.

http://infotech.indiatimes.com/quick...ow/5674859.cms
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Last edited by ashdoc; March 16th, 2010 at 01:23 AM.
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Old March 16th, 2010, 08:02 AM
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sarv_shaktimaan sarv_shaktimaan is offline
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Re: H1-B visa--what you must know

Where did you find this ancient document. common knowledge to all desis in USA since time immemorial.
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Old March 24th, 2010, 11:51 PM
wiliamjoan wiliamjoan is offline
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Re: H1-B visa--what you must know

Wow its very fantastic article.Its amazing work.I will be trying for H1-B visa.The H1B Visa is the official and primary USA work visa or permit available to people from all over the world.The US Government introduced the H1B visa to offer and enable highly skilled International Professionals and International Students,from all over the World, the opportunity to live and work in the USA.
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