New H-1B visa rules may make paperwork more complicated, impact US economy, says R Chandrashekhar, Nasscom

By: | Published: February 23, 2018 12:41 PM

The latest revisions in the H-1B visa regime brought about by Donald Trump administration are likely to adversely impact the US economy by making it more restrictive, R Chandrashekhar, President, National Association for Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) said.

Chandrashekharan, NASSCOMThe new guidance will result in making paperwork more complicated and onerous,Nasscom said.

The latest revisions in the H-1B visa regime brought about by Donald Trump administration are likely to adversely impact the US economy by making it more restrictive, R Chandrashekhar, President, National Association for Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) told ET Now. The new rules now place increased responsibility on US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), he said. The new guidance will result in making paperwork more complicated and onerous, he added. Despite these new visa rules, Indian IT businesses will not be affected much, he maintained. US today announced a revised policy framework that makes it tough for issuing H-1B visas to those employed at one or more third-party worksites, PTI reported.

The new policy introduced by the Donald Trump administration demands a company to prove how an H1-B worker employed by it at some third-party worksite holds specific and non-qualifying speculative assignments in speciality occupation, PTI report said. The Indian IT firms are major beneficiaries of H1-B visas as they employ a large number of workers at third-party worksites. With this policy announcement made yesterday, the Indian IT firms and their employees are certain to get worried. Under the new guidance, the USCIS can issue H-1B visas to a worker just for the period she is employed at a third-party worksite. As per the current norms, the US administration issues H-1B visas for a three year period to the IT employees. But, with this revision in policy that immediately comes into effect, the issuance could be under three years, PTI report said.

The policy revision comes just weeks ahead of start of H-1B visas filing season that is expected to be April 2 for FY 2019 starting October 1, this year. In case of an H-1B petition, new guidance requires a petitioner to show by a preponderance of evidence that the given beneficiary will be employed in a speciality occupation. In case of an employee staying on a bench for any part in the last duration, H-1B visa extension has become more tough now, PTI report said. Earlier in January this year, R Chandrashekhar, President, National Association for Software and Services Companies (Nasscom) had told PTI that visa use by Indian IT companies has declined by 50 percent in the previous two years.

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