The H-1B visa lottery is supposed to be fair, an impartial system that gives immigrant workers a chance to secure a job in the United States. However, now it looks like some companies are doing their best to take advantage of the lottery, and that can affect workers who try and do things the right way. If you are one of those workers, an experienced employment immigration lawyer in NYC might be able to assist you.
What is the H-1B Visa?
An H-1B visa is a temporary visa offered to immigrants who have found a position with an American employer. These types of visas are specifically for tech workers with at least a bachelor’s degree in their field of study.
When a company wants to hire an immigrant worker, they sponsor them in the H-1B visa lottery. Many people apply, but not every applicant can be picked. If a worker is picked to receive a visa, the employer just needs to confirm that they still need workers. Then that worker can come to the United States to live and work.
How Are Companies Taking Advantage of the Visa Lottery?
The current problem concerns how some workers are being sponsored. Usually, a potential employee gets sponsored by one company. Then they roll the dice and see if they get picked for a visa.
Unfortunately, some companies are now trying to take advantage of this lottery system and encouraging workers to apply multiple times with sponsorships from different businesses. This is not exactly illegal in most cases. It is entirely possible for workers to seek out the sponsorship of multiple companies and receive the backing of two or more businesses in the lottery normally. What is currently happening is on a different scale though.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services received more than 781,000 registrations for the lottery’s 85,000 spots this year. This is more than twice as many applications as they received last year. Of those, nearly 409,000 registrations were filed by 96,000 workers.
It is unlikely that this many workers would have so many sponsorships each. The suspicion is that unscrupulous companies are sponsoring as many workers as they can and hoping that they get through the lottery. Once a worker receives an H-1B visa, these companies can lend the worker to another business through a contracting agreement and profit off of their work. This is not fair to people who apply for a work visa in a legitimate way and it is not really fair to an H-1B visa holder who now has to kick back their earnings to a company that spends its time trying to game the United States immigration system.
What Does This Mean for My Visa Application?
Unfortunately, this means that it may be harder for you to secure an H-1B visa in a legitimate manner. Having a knowledgeable lawyer in your corner could be beneficial though. Contact the Law Office of Cheryl R. David and schedule a consultation. We can tell you more about the visa application process and how we may be able to help.