H-1B visa is the most popular and most sought after work visas in the US, which under the immigration law, permits US companies to temporarily employ qualified foreign nationals in various specialized fields. With an H-1B visa, one can live and work in the US. The maximum duration of the non-immigrant visa is six years. The process of H-1B visa application is initiated by the sponsoring company and no individual can apply directly. There are some strict criteria for eligibility and the number is limited.
So, if you want to work in the US with an H-1B visa, first consult your sponsoring company. Without a sponsor company, you can’t think about this popular US work visa. After your sponsor company files your visa application, various criteria will be used to decide on your visa. Note that, only a limited number of H-1B visas are issued each fiscal year. So, your luck too plays a role!
Some people thinks that US needs to cut the H-1B visa, which allows US companies to bring in aliens or foreign nationals to work and live in the US! Also current immigration policies permits only a limited number, which forces companies to wait till next fiscal year for new visas. But in my view, reducing the number or a ban on H-1B is not good solution. Because, it will only increase the number of jobs going out of the country. US companies outsource their technology jobs to foreign locations such as India, in order to obtain effective service at reduced cost. But when H-1B sponsor companies are not able to bring in the required number of qualified employees, chances are more that they will think about sending their jobs out to those countries where qualified professionals are available.
Outsourcing means money is going out of the country with the tech jobs, which is not good for the economy. On the other hand, H-1B brings in qualified manpower to contribute in country’s development. Moreover, to fill the gap caused by the shortage of qualified highly-skilled US workers, companies must look towards foreign nationals. That’s why Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates called for an action to increase the H-1B quota. Now a newly introduced bill in the US Congress is expected to increase the limit for H-1B visas. This action will definitely help US companies in hiring more immigrant workers to stay ahead of the competition while contributing towards nation’s development.