The spouses of H-1B and L-1 visa holders are now eligible for automatic work authorization extensions for up to 180 days, as ordered by a US court. Thousands of Indian professionals now living and working in the United States will profit from the United States’ decision to provide spouses of H-1B visa holders automatic work authorization licenses. The American Immigration Lawyers Association filed the claim for immigrant spouses who had lost their jobs due to lengthy delays in issuing work permits.
The spouses of H-1B and L-1 visa holders are now eligible for automatic work authorization extensions for up to 180 days, as ordered by a US court. Spouses of L-1 visa holders automatically qualify for the extension. However, H-4 visa holders must file for an extension before their work authorization expires.
Legislation to provide spouses of H-1B visa holders automatic work permits:
To help alleviate the labor shortage affecting American businesses, two US representatives have introduced a bill in the House of Representatives that would allow spouses of thousands of foreign nationals, including Indians, to work in the country legally. Spouses and children under 21 accompanying H-1B, H-2A, H-2B, or H-3 visa holders can apply for H-4 visas. Many H-4 visa holders have impressive credentials and experience in their own right, having pursued successful jobs or provided for their families.
Employers in the United States may sponsor foreign nationals for temporary labor in specialty jobs that require theoretical or technical competence through the H-1B nonimmigrant visa program. Tens of thousands of people from developing nations like India and China are hired by IT firms yearly because of it. Temporary agricultural workers (H-2A visa), temporary non-agricultural workers (H-2B visa), and nonimmigrant trainees/unique education exchange visits (H-3 visa).
The H-4 Work Authorisation Act, introduced on Thursday by Representatives Carolyn Bourdeaux and Maria Elvira Salazar, would modify current legislation to permit the spouses of H-1B visa holders to immediately begin working after acquiring an H-4 visa. They reasoned that if visa holders didn’t have to apply for an EAD (employment authorization document), more people would apply for them. The two representatives claim their bill will aid immigrant families and help American businesses cope with the current labor shortage.
Even though they are currently in the United States, H-4 visa holders can only begin working once they apply for employment authorization. Due to backlogs at USCIS, it can take anywhere from six months to eight months, and sometimes even longer, for an application for work authorization to be approved. The National Immigration Forum and UnidosUs, a nonprofit advocacy organization, have both expressed support for the bill in the hopes that it will help address the United States labor shortage and facilitate the swift employment of visa holders so that they may care for their families.
According to a press release, providing immediate work authorization to H-4 visa holders and reducing the number of work authorizations USCIS must process could also help lessen the backlog of work authorization applications. Rajkotupdates.news: america granted work permits for indian spouses of h-1 b visa holders.
The Distinction Between H-4 and L-2 Visas:
Spouses of L-1 and H-1B visa holders will profit from the recent immigrant-friendly amendment because their work authorization will now be automatically extended for 180 days. H-4 visas are issued by US Citizenship and Immigration Services to H-1B visa holders’ wives and minor children. According to statistics compiled by the United States government, over 94% of H-4 visa holders are women. Nearly 93% of these are Indian citizens.
Nonimmigrant L-1 visas are issued for shorter periods than other visa types. Through this visa program, foreign nationals working in specialized jobs for multinational corporations can temporarily relocate to the United States. Dependent spouses and children under 21 of L-1 visa holders can apply for L-2 visas. L-2 visa holders who wish to work in the United States can do so by applying for and receiving an Employment Authorization Document.
The Implications for India:
The employment authorization document previously required of spouses of H-1B and L-2 visa holders who wished to work in the United States has been eliminated. According to the settlement terms, H-4 spouses who are in lawful status but need to renew their employment authorization will be automatically extended for 180 days after expiration if the agency fails to process their timely-filed petitions. H-4 visas are granted to H-1B visa holders’ dependents. It can take up to two years to process applications for spouses; thus, the lawsuit aimed to eliminate the bottlenecks in the procedures that led to many spouses losing their jobs.
Forbes reported that one of the original plaintiffs in the complaint was Divya Jayaraj, an international student who came to the United States and later returned as the spouse of an H-1B visa holder. She practised medicine as a profession. “Concurrent with her spouse’s extension, on August 25, 2020, she filed applications to extend her H-4 status on Form I-539 and EAD on Form I-765,” the lawsuit reads, alleging that Divya lost her employment “because of agency inaction.”
U.S. government body expresses “serious concerns” over visa lottery amid record high volume of H-1B petitions:
Authorities warned Friday that they have “serious concerns” that some are exploiting the system for an unfair edge as the number of visa applications used in the technology industry has skyrocketed for a second consecutive year. The number of people applying for H-1B visas in this year’s computer-generated lottery was 780,884, up 61% from the previous year’s total of 483,927, according to a statement from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to “stakeholders.” Up from 308,613 submissions in 2017.. last year’s total. Was.
Employees who win the lotto are now required by law to sign affidavits swearing they did not collude with others to submit several bids under different firm names, even if there was no underlying employment offer. If they could pull off an upset once, they could offer their services as labor contractors to tech businesses looking to fill positions with workers who lacked the necessary visas.
Numerous valid registrations raise major concerns that some may have attempted to obtain an unfair advantage by submitting several registrations on behalf of the same beneficiary for beneficiaries with multiple eligible registrations, much larger than in previous years. The agency speculated that this may have helped their chances of being chosen unfairly.
The organization claims to have “undertaken extensive fraud investigations” into lottery applications over the past two years, with some petitions being dismissed and others being “in the process” of being referred to federal prosecutors. This year, there were 408,891 duplicate registrations, up from 165,180 in 2017 and 90,143 in 2016 and 2015. The government has stated that it will continue to prevent illegal registrations and ensure that only law-abiding citizens can submit H-1B cap petitions.
The H-1B visa, used by software engineers and others in the computer industry, has become a flashpoint in the immigration debate because of claims that its users are undercutting the wages of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents. Despite having to lay off people in other areas, technology companies claim they are essential for filling difficult positions. Major technology companies have observed a decline in winning lottery submissions as the number of applications has increased over the past two years. Rajkotupdates.news: america granted work permits for indian spouses of h-1 b visa holders.
Raise the limit on H-1B visas and other lawful immigration options: American lawmaker:
Shri Thanedar, an Indian American congressman, has asked US Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to increase the number of available H-1B visas, which are particularly popular among Indian IT professionals, to meet the demand for skilled workers from India. Employers in the United States may sponsor foreign nationals for temporary labor in specialty jobs that require theoretical or technical competence through the H-1B nonimmigrant visa program.
Tens of thousands of people from developing nations like India and China are hired by IT firms yearly because of it. Thanedar spoke before the House Committee on Homeland Security on the Department of Homeland Security’s Fiscal Year 2024 Budget Request and told Mayorkas, “We must expand legal pathways for
immigration, perhaps by increasing the yearly allotment of H-1B visas.
There is an annual limit of 85,000 H-1B visas, with 20,000 reserved for people who have earned advanced degrees in the United States. Thanedar, a Democrat, said that the problems with border security indicate that the US immigration system needs to be reformed. He was the lone lawmaker to question the Homeland Security Secretary on the H-1B program.
According to Thanedar, the Department of Homeland Security performs various activities beyond the border vital to protecting the United States. For instance, we need to guarantee that the TSA can continue protecting all forms of transportation as intended. He added that TSA workers had been subjected to unjust working conditions for too long, with frontline agents receiving 30 percent less pay and weaker labor protection than other federal employees doing similar jobs.
“Republican attempts to address these issues have fallen short and have only come in response to more good ideas from Ranking Member Thompson and other Democrats. Fortunately, Democrats voted last year to fund increased protections and compensation for TSA employees, which will go into effect this July,” he said.