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Riding out political change regarding H1-B visas

Some time ago, before Jeff Sessions was confirmed as the new Attorney General of the United States, he petitioned former Attorney General Eric Holder to investigate companies throughout the nation regarding their use of the H1-B visa program. If you or your family member has crossed borders into this country through the program, you know the process is complex and challenging at best and wrought with problems that have left many immigrants worried about their statuses and way of life in America.

Various people in Kentucky and elsewhere have expressed their concerns, since President Donald Trump took office, regarding the future of the H1-B program. In fact, some (perhaps yourself included) who have already submitted applications for work visas and are part way through the process, or those who have been here for some time, are living in fear that their stays will be cut short and the plans they have to build a new life in the United States will perish.

H1-B basics

As with any type of legal status program in America, you're typically best off learning as much as you can before you set any wheels in motion. After all, leaving your family behind and worrying about them if you've already been living and working here for several years can be very frightening. Therefore, being aware of the following requirements often helps to avoid problems:

Before an H1-B petition is even filed, several requirements must be met. Individual forms for each requirement must be completed and verified as the process unfolds.

  • You can't apply for a work visa without possessing some form of specialty skills regarding the line of work you wish to enter in the United States.
  • Most times, a bachelor's degree or equivalent is required as minimum proof of expertise.
  • Even if you have a college degree, you must also show proof that the job you intend to fulfill here relates to the field of study in which you hold your degree.
  • The wages offered must be competitive, meaning they must be offered at "the going rate" or higher.

It is also crucial to show an established employer-employee relationship with a particular company in America. In other words, it's not good enough merely stating that a particular person intends to hire you. That person must prove his or her ability to hire, fire, pay wages and oversee employees.

Established support

Some very high-profile global business entrepreneurs, such as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, are avidly lobbying on behalf of immigrants and the H1-B visa program. These advocates have expressed their desire to organize efforts to spread the word about vast numbers of successes various immigrants have enjoyed through the program. Although its fate is uncertain at this time, many have come forward to confirm their support.

Since thousands of workers enter the United States every year through the H1-B visa program, it is likely many current and prospective immigrants are sitting on edge, waiting to see what happens. Some are already facing problems because of recent political agendas that have prompted changes, which, in turn, have led to application delays or investigations of current immigrant workers. Many Kentucky workers who have found help through the legal system have recommended finding an experienced immigration attorney to assist anyone facing a particular H1-B visa-related problem.

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