H-1B visas are available for several types of workers, but the most well known is the "specialty occupations" visa. It is available to highly skilled foreign workers who work in jobs which typically cannot be performed by people without at least a bachelor's degree in their field. Examples include engineers, architects, and computer programmers.
A few weeks ago, technology-based companies were in the news for encouraging lawmakers to make H-1B visas easier to obtain for highly skilled workers. Now, some of the biggest companies in the United States are trying to make it easier for lower-skilled workers to come to Louisiana legally. Chief executives from Coca-Cola, McDonald's, Cargill and multiple other national and regional companies have drafted a letter to lawmakers, pushing for changes in employment immigration.
Immigrants to relocate to the United States often seek to remain in the nation with their family members who traveled with them to the country or who later joined them. In order to accomplish this, immigrants seek to obtain employment. Because some immigrants are unable to enter the country through the proper legal channels, this could make it difficult to obtain or maintain a job. Even if the proper paperwork is filled out, it could still be challenging to work in the field of expertise the immigrant has due to competition.
The number of foreign workers coming to the United States for employment immigration seems to be on the rise and it looks like this number will only go up as the years go by. Each year, companies send in applications for H-1B visas with the hope of employing these highly qualified foreign workers. Citizenship and Immigration Services has reported that over 170,000 applications have been sent in this year, but only 85,000 were accepted.
If you need to file new H-1Bs this week is your last chance. The next H-1B work visa filing season begins April 1, 2014 for petitions subject to the visa limitation of 78,200 new cases. There will most certainly be a lottery for the small number of H visas available, as there was last year. In all likelihood, USCIS will permit filing during the first five business days of the month, that is, Tuesday, April 1 through Monday April 7.