Indian Techies who reside in the US are not having it rosy in the country as the government seems to be no longer interested in granting visa extensions. There are some of those who have remained determined to file for a new H-1B visa, while a lot of them have been left with the one option of returning home to India.
While the number of visa extension denials is on the increase, there is also a spike in the number of Requests for Evidence (RFE) made. An RFE is a notice issued by US authorities to visa applicants when they need more information and supporting documents regarding their visa applications. This stalls the visa process and makes the cost more expensive for companies.
The USCIS had last week announced that premium processing will be resumed for the H-1B visa program, but Indian IT firms are still having a hard time extending the visa of their employees.
Industry experts have revealed that this difficulty in the visa process is basically a direct result of the present government’s focus on making more jobs available to Americans.
What’s the H-1B visa validity like?
The H-1B visa is generally issued for three years and can be extended for an additional three years. When the second extension expires, if the holder wishes to extend their stay in the US, they should then seek for an RFE.
Usually, the USCIS issues these RFEs at the time of the first extension or when the applicant applies for a Green Card.
Indians could sometimes wait for as long as ten years to get their Green Cards. With the slight chances of getting their RFE approved getting so obvious; many Indian techies have packed up and returned to their country.
USCIS revealed that Indian applicants for the H-1B visa in 2017 were 2.2 million out of the total of 3.4 million applications filed that year.
In 2018, the processing time for H-1B visa applications was 3.2 months. It rose to 5.2 months in 2019.
By April 1, the USCIS will start receiving H-1B visa petitions for the fiscal year of 2020.
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