Premium Domain is Available for Sale/Lease.If you are interested to buy Send Your BID on or also can contact us on WhatsApp chat!


10AM – 6PM


Call : +91 81960 96560

How New H-1B Visa Rules Could Affect Indian Applicants: What You Need to Know

New H-1B Visa Rules

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is set to unveil significant changes to H-1B visa regulations. These changes are expected to have a profound impact on employers and professionals, particularly those from India. Scheduled for release on July 8, the new regulations will enter a public commentary period before being finalized. Let’s dive into what these changes entail and how they might affect Indian applicants. New H-1B Visa Rules

Upcoming Fee Increases

One of the most notable changes is the introduction of new fees for extending H-1B and L-1 visas. Under the proposed rules, extending an H-1B visa will cost $4,000, while extending an L-1 visa will cost $4,500. These fees are part of the 9/11 Response and Biometric Entry-Exit Fee, which until now applied only to initial visa petitions and employer changes.

These fee hikes are likely to add a significant financial burden on visa holders and their employers. For Indian professionals, who often rely on these extensions to continue their employment in the US, the increased costs could be a major concern.

Timeline for Implementation

The USCIS initially proposed these changes on October 23 of the previous year. Currently, the rule is undergoing a 60-day public commentary phase. According to Forbes, the Biden administration might finalize the rule by the end of this year or after the upcoming election. This timeline suggests that the changes could soon become a reality, impacting thousands of Indian H-1B visa holders and prospective applicants.

Redefining Specialty Occupations

Another significant change is the redefinition of specialty occupations. The new definition would require job roles to necessitate specific degrees closely tied to the job’s particular specialties. This move mirrors a policy from the Trump administration, which faced legal challenges over concerns that it excluded many skilled international professionals.

Under the revised definition, individuals with degrees in business administration might be considered as having a ‘general degree,’ potentially making them ineligible for specialty occupation status. This change could disproportionately affect Indian professionals, who often possess degrees in broad fields like business administration.

Get hassle-free document preparation support for your study abroad journey. Expert guidance, accuracy, and timely assistance at SteptoAbroad.

Impact on Employers

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is also contemplating imposing substantial fees on employers for H-1B and L-1 visa extensions, especially for entities with over 50 percent of their workforce on these visas. This move targets large tech companies and other employers who heavily rely on foreign talent. These visas are crucial for US companies to import skilled talent for specialized roles that are challenging to fill locally, highlighting their importance in the American job market.

What This Means for Indian Applicants

For Indian applicants and H-1B visa holders, these changes could bring about several challenges:

Increased Financial Burden:

The new fees for visa extensions will significantly increase the cost of maintaining visa status in the US.

Job Eligibility Concerns:

The redefinition of specialty occupations might render many professionals with broad degrees ineligible for H-1B visas.

Employer Challenges:

Companies employing a large number of H-1B and L-1 visa holders might face increased costs, potentially affecting their hiring decisions.

Portugal Tightens Immigration Rules

Navigating the Changes

Given the potential impact of these changes, Indian applicants and current H-1B visa holders should stay informed and prepared. Here are a few steps to consider:

Stay Updated:

Keep an eye on official announcements from the USCIS and DHS. The public commentary period is an opportunity to understand the nuances of the proposed changes and how they might be adjusted based on feedback.

Financial Planning:

Prepare for the increased costs associated with visa extensions. Discuss with your employer about the potential financial implications and any support they might offer.

Degree Relevance:

If you are planning to apply for an H-1B visa, ensure that your degree is closely aligned with the job role you are applying for. This might require seeking positions that match your educational background more precisely.

Legal Advice:

Consult with an immigration attorney to understand how these changes might specifically affect your situation. Legal experts can provide guidance on navigating the new regulations and maintaining your visa status.

Employer Communication:

Employers should stay informed about these changes and prepare for the increased costs. This might involve adjusting hiring strategies or budgeting for the additional fees.

frequently asked questions (FAQs) related to H-1B visa regulations and implications for Indian applicants:

What are the upcoming changes to H-1B visa regulations?

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is proposing new rules that include extension fees and stricter criteria for specialty occupations.

When will the new H-1B visa rules be implemented?

The regulations are expected to be finalized after a public commentary period, potentially by the end of the year following review and feedback.

How will the extension fees impact H-1B visa holders and employers?

Extension fees of $4,000 for H-1B visas and $4,500 for L-1 visas could increase costs for both visa holders and employers maintaining foreign talent.

What is the specialty occupation redefinition under the new rules?

The redefinition requires specific degrees closely related to the job’s specialty, potentially affecting roles previously considered under broader qualifications.

Who will be most affected by the new H-1B visa regulations?

Indian professionals constitute a significant portion of H-1B visa holders and may face challenges if their degrees are not deemed sufficiently specialized.

Why is USCIS proposing these changes to H-1B visa rules?

The changes aim to prioritize domestic hiring, discourage over-reliance on foreign labor, and ensure visa holders meet stringent occupational requirements.

How can Indian applicants prepare for these changes?

Applicants should stay informed about the latest updates, consult immigration professionals, and ensure their qualifications align with the new specialty occupation criteria.

What should employers do to comply with the new regulations?

Employers should assess their workforce composition, anticipate additional costs, and consider alternative recruitment strategies to mitigate impacts.

Are there exemptions or waivers for the extension fees?

USCIS has not indicated exemptions for the proposed extension fees, which are intended to apply uniformly across applicable visa categories.

Will there be additional fees for visa transfers or changes in employment under the new rules?

Currently, the proposed fees apply primarily to extensions, with potential future implications for other visa processes depending on USCIS directives.

What should visa holders do if they face challenges under the new rules?

Visa holders should seek legal counsel, understand their options for compliance or appeals, and monitor USCIS announcements for further guidance.

How can employers demonstrate the necessity of H-1B visa holders in specialty occupations?

Employers should provide comprehensive job descriptions, demonstrate efforts to recruit domestically, and substantiate the unique skills foreign workers bring to their operations.

What impact will these changes have on the tech industry in the US?

The tech industry, heavily reliant on skilled international talent, may experience disruptions in recruitment strategies and operational costs under the proposed rules.

Are there advocacy efforts against the proposed H-1B visa changes?

Various stakeholders, including industry associations and immigration advocacy groups, are engaging in advocacy efforts to influence policy outcomes and mitigate potential adverse effects.

Where can I find reliable updates and resources on H-1B visa regulations?

Official USCIS communications, reputable immigration law firms, and industry news outlets provide valuable updates and guidance on navigating the evolving landscape of H-1B visas.

Conclusion: The upcoming changes to H-1B visa regulations represent a significant shift in US immigration policy, particularly affecting Indian professionals. While these changes aim to tighten the requirements and increase fees, they also highlight the ongoing challenges faced by international professionals seeking opportunities in the US. By staying informed and proactive, Indian applicants can better navigate these changes and continue to pursue their career goals in the US. For more information contact us now.

Tourist visa


This article is intended for informational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice. Please consult with a qualified immigration attorney for specific guidance regarding your individual situation.

Study in USA: Unlocking Academic Opportunities Abroad

Also read: