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US Immigration Reforms Proposes Relief for H-1B Visa Holders

Efforts to Breathe New Life for H-1B Visa Holders

While a couple of hot favourite immigration destinations send shock waves among the thousands seeking immigration, one country is vouching to bring in some respite among the immigrant clan. The National Security Agreement package announced by the USA recently has provisions that will benefit immigrants, particularly the Indian diaspora. 

Yes, you read it right. The Biden-Harris administration has asked Congress to pass the new agreement immediately. It is still early to rejoice though, as some immigration experts and political pundits claim that it is tough that the bill will get passed in both houses of the US parliament, if at all it gets placed for voting.

Here are some of the provisions that will benefit the Indian diaspora:

  • Protection for Aging Children of H-1B Workers

Several children, nearly 2.5 lakh, came to the US as kids on H-4 dependent visas accompanying their parents who came on H-1B visas. Many of these children have attained the legal age of 21 and will no longer be covered under an H-4 visa.

Now, if the bill gets passed in the parliament, these children who will be turning 21 and have resided lawfully in the US as dependent children for at least 8 years will be eligible for temporary work authorisation.

It is much anticipated and truly welcoming news, and the hundreds of thousands of Indians living in the US on H-1B visas must be wishing that this provision is turned into a law. It is a sensible thought, for the thousands of children who have lived here lawfully have somehow contributed to the growth of the economy, but still, they do not have legal status yet.

Till now these children had to apply for an F-1 visa which is crafted to bring in international students, or they faced deportation to their home country. It also meant that they were no longer eligible to join the queue of green card applicant along with their parents. It is a very sorry state of affairs for these children, and certainly due for fixing for quite a long.

  • Permission to Work for Spouses of H-1B Visa Holders

If the bill is passed, then nearly 25,000 work authorisations will be issued to non-immigrants holding K-1, K-2, or K-3 visas. Plus, it will also permit to issuing of 100,000 work authorisations to H-4 visa holders and children of some H-1B visas.

This introduction makes perfect sense, as in the present time, running a family with a single earning is practically impossible. Even in countries like India or other developing economies, the majority of families have more than one earning source. 

Having a rule that the spouse of a H-1B visa holder cannot work and earn, just makes no sense. This issue should have been addressed long before, and we are highly thankful that there is someone who is thinking about it.

  • Increase the Quotas for Green Card

Cap on the number of immigrant visas issued in a year will be raised for the first time in 30 years. Every year 6.75 lakh green cards are issued, in this nearly 4.80 lakh go to family preference, and employment-based immigrants take the next big chunk of 1.4 lakh.

As and when the bill gets passed, the number of immigrant visas issued will be increased by 50,000 every year, for five years, by when 2.5 lahks more visas will be issued to what they are now.

Wow, and thank you, this is all we can say at the moment, and certainly over 4 million Asian-Indians living in the USA must have been backing this agreement to turn into a law.

Need for a Better Immigration System

America has been a country of immigrants, for years, and after several thousand immigrants settled successfully and contributed significantly to its economy, it is high time that they get their due rights, which they surely deserve. Among the numerous provisions inked, there are several positives, including protection for ageing children who came to the US with H-1B visa holders and an increasing number of visas that are issued annually. Learn which route is most suitable for immigrating by consulting overseas education consultants in Gurgaon.

Wait for Voting and a Positive Outcome

Those against this legislation of the National Security Agreement will raise the hue and cry that local jobs and employment opportunities are lost to immigrants. However, this is far from the truth, as immigrants have, throughout history, created numerous employment opportunities. They have contributed to the growth of the American economy, or else, H-1B visas would not have been issued every year. Unfortunately, these workers are exploited rather than being given their due rights

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