The US government has introduced a new method of applying for H1B visas from April 2019. The H1B is sought after by Indian companies, especially in the IT sector, who station their employees in the US. As per the new regulations, companies would have to pre register electronically for the annual H1B lottery. Companies would then have to file full petitions on behalf of those candidates who win the lottery.
Presently, sponsoring companies file petitions just to participate in the lottery. The process is cumbersome and this would move would result in savings on administrive costs for such companies. The move has been approved by the US Office of Management and the Budget Unit of the US President's Executive Office.
While the new regulations streamline the application process, they seem to offer more leverage to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services in deciding who gets to work in the country. Under Donal Trump's administration, the US Government is keen on curbing immigrants and protecting the jobs of Americans.
Only 65,000 H1B visas are allotted under the regular cap or general quota whole 20,000 are allotted under the master's cap, for those immigrants having an advanced degree from US universities. The quota gets filled up entirely within the first week of April leading to a random lottery system for selection. 1.9 lakh applications were received in 2018-19 with Indians lopping up 60% of the H1B visas. Companies such as Cognizant, Infosys, Wipro and TCS are top sponsors for the H1B.