TIME TO REVIEW VISA UNDERSTANDING…

TIME TO REVIEW VISA UNDERSTANDING…

LBJ signs new Immigration bill at foot of steps leading to Lady Liberty

LBJ signs new Immigration bill at foot of steps leading to Lady Liberty

If one were to look at the array of visas offered to potential immigrants from other countries, allow me to say that their options are ready just about everything one could possible imagine. Just as a quick ramble-off let us consider just a few of these visas for cursory purposes. Then let us look at them with what it is that the multitude of visas provide both for the benefit of the potential immigrant and the U.S. as well as what cost will it be.

First the easiest ones that don’t take a lot of explanation; however, please understand that each application of course works both ways – normally one for the applicant and the other for the applicant’s family and/or relatives, domestic partners, and many other forms as well.

We believe these to be the most sought: Application to work in the United States (Form I 765), A visitor’s visa (B-2), Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (Form I 821D), Temporary Protected Status (Form I 821), and this is where things really get mixed up; El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, and Syria. We are reminded that the expiration date for all TPS status is often extended.

And we would hope you would ask about the Diversity Lottery. Ready? Is it possible to win a green card? Yes! There is actually an official lottery offered by the United States government to give individuals from under-represented countries the opportunity to live and work in the United States permanently and legally. It is commonly known as the Green Card Lottery. The official title is Diversity Visa Program and it is operated by the US Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs.  Now on to H-1B visas. logo

Not everyone agrees with the desire to expand H-1B visas.

The H-1B visa is referred to as a “professional” visa category. In a recent article in the Stanford News top scholars were discussing the implications of this new type of visa, albeit it is not that new. The article is titled, Stanford Scholars see Political Hurdles in Immigration Reform. This particular type of visa is the one used in the article so I compiled some information. (For further reading click here.)

Minian said she believes that is unfair to bring more skilled workers to this country through H-1B visas while blocking employment of other migrants who have already built families and communities here.

Here is one dissenting opinion: Expanding H-1B visas is a vulnerable concern. The H-1B is a non-immigrant visa in the United States under the Immigration and Nationality Act, section 101(a)(15)(H). It allows US employers to temporarily employ foreign workers in specialty occupations. If a foreign worker in H-1B status quits or is dismissed from the sponsoring employer, the worker must either apply for and be granted a change of status to another non-immigrant status, find another employer (subject to application for adjustment of status and/or change of visa), or leave the US.

green-card-imgIn addition, in the case of “H-1B-dependent employers” (usually those with more than 15% of their workers on H-1B visas), the law requires these employers to recruit U.S. workers in “good faith” (8 U.S.C. 1182(n) (1)(G)).

As a general rule, a person who is in one non-immigrant status may not change status or change employers in that status until he or she applies with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for such a change, and such change is granted. However, a provision called “H-1B portability” permits certain individuals already in the United States in H-1B status to commence employment for a new employer once a new employer’s H-1B petition is filed with USCIS.

Congress has placed a numerical “cap” on H-1B visas. For Fiscal Year 2015 (which begins October 1, 2014), the limit is 65,000 cap-subject H-1B visas, with an additional 20,000 visas available for individuals who have form-i-765earned a master’s degree or higher from an accredited U.S. educational institution. Although some exemptions from the cap may be available (principally for institutions of higher education), most employers are subject to the cap. As with last year, we expect the H-1B cap to be reached the first week of April. Once the H-1B cap has been reached, employers will be unable to file new cap-subject H-1B petitions until April 1, 2015.

Consequently, employers are advised to make H-1B sponsorship decisions within the next few weeks. It is important to prepare H-1B petitions as early as possible—and well before April 1st—so that a complete petition can be submitted to USCIS on the first day the quota opens. USCIS received more than 85,000 H-1B petitions during the first week of April 2013, and established an H-1B lottery to determine which petitions would be accepted for processing.

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About Jon-Paul Schilling

Academia, Constitution, Musicianship, all around Caucasian male, straight, and professes Jesus Christ as the Lord of my life. Guitars -- Classical, Acoustic, A/E, Strat, a real bassist at heart, Les Paul Standard bass.
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