According to a report, two members of the US House of Representatives are presently engaged in attempts to improve the manner in which the H-1B, US Work Visa lottery works. Still, the bill has not been introduced so far even while it continues to be unlikely that it will be presented anytime shortly.
Apart from this, there will be the requirement of cross-party backing for the legislation to be duly approved by both the US Houses of Congress. And, from past experience it allegedly appears tremendously doubtful.
The wished-for legislation seeks to mainly conclude the H-1B visa lottery arrangement in favour of 'salary offers' instead, putting recruiters/job-providers that provide liberal salary packages at the front of the queue for appointing overseas manpower.
Reportedly, there have been talks related to moving forward with the planned bill. There have been controversies about the H-1B Visa scheme. For instance, some claims have been made that a great deal of pressure was put on the Southern California Edison employees to offer training to their H-1B replacements. Allegedly, the case appears to be an example of specifically what the H-1B visa is not planned to be: a scheme to just replace the local labor force en bloc with cheap manpower from abroad.
Reportedly, since the legislation is presently a "work in progress", none has been really keen to talk 'on the record' about the bill. Still, many informed sources are unstated to know its major features.
Under the present legislation, the US allots the 85,000 H-1B Visas through a lottery, with the chances of winning one likely at odds of one-in-three, based on the present demand. This year, in the month of April, 236,000 H-1B Visa applications were filed.
The proposed bill seeks to distribute wages in such a manner that won't push the H-1B Visa allocations prejudiced towards high-wage regions such as Silicon Valley, the Northeast corridor, and Seattle. The bill would take up a 4-tier prevailing salary structure, with a view to factoring in income disparities by region and ability.
For all the talk of the latest bill to substitute the H-1B lottery arrangement, the chances of the lottery scheme being ended completely are thin. Against the backdrop of the fact that a proportion of the H-1B Visa petitions are possible to provide comparable wages towards the bottom of the distribution list, it's possible that a lottery would be employed to allot these visas.
It's unspoken that the legislation would raise the present 60,000 dollars salary threshold that generates an exemption for the H-1B dependent corporations. H-1B dependent recruiters/job-providers are those who fall under these criteria:
A recruiter/job-provider that has 25 or lesser full-time workers of which over 7 happen to be H-1B Visa workers;
An recruiter/job-provider has from 26 to 50 permanent workers of whom over 12 happen to be H-1B Visa workers; or
A recruiter/job-provider has over 50 permanent workers of which 15% or above happens to be H-1B workers.
The H-1B dependent recruiters/job-providers are largely Indian IT services firms. Unless exempt, such recruiters/job-providers have to fulfill difficult conditions when it comes to substantiating that local employees are not "displaced" by the H-1B employees.
Even as a new wage level hasn't been decided, the H-1B dependent companies could potentially "displace" American manpower, as long as they shell-out not less than the new set wage level to fall under the exemption. At present, a Master's Degree also offers an exemption. Still, under the most recent legislation, this exemption would be done away with.
Further to introducing a more just distribution of wages, the legislation reportedly is keen to get rid of the present upper limit on per-country, Green Cards for those with advanced degrees. Under the present legislation, there's a limit on the figure of the employment-based Green Cards given per annum, fixed at 140,000, and with no more than 7% offered to any single nation.
Eventually, the limit on the employment-based, Green Cards has led to long waiting periods for the individuals from the India & China--two nations were the demand is at its peak.