Finally the mad rush for H1Bs is over !


This probably is for the first time in the decade that H1B visa are under a threat of not filling its full quota of H1b visa’s. More than 20,000 H1B visa’s are still vacant and there are less than 3 weeks remaining to fill that up.

(update: These remaining  H1B Visa’s can be filled up till they dry up or till the end of next financial year -2010 : thanks Martin & Ravi)

This is in stark contrast to previous 3-4 years when the full quota of 65,000 H1B Visa’s were lapped up within less than a month of opening up.


Whats the reason for this sudden fall of demand of H1B visa’s?

Offcourse, it can be attributed to Economic recession – but is that all? No, there is another reason as well that has significantly attributed to fall of demand – It is Obama’s policy of not allowing the companies who have taken government stimulus packages and have more than 15% of their workforce on Visa’s like h1b on their payroll.

These Financial services firms mopped the major portion of these H1Bs, and hence the low demand this time around.

Another reason is that U.S unemployment rate figures currently stand at 9.7%, highest in over quarter of a century – Subsequently, the salary rates have come down leading to lower demand of H1B visa’s. If American Corporations can get local employees at the same rate as H1Bs, they are going to prefer it.

Adding to all this is that the H1B visa granting process has become more stringent, thereby increasing disqualification.

I am also inclined to think that with this financial meltdown, the American shores seem to have lost their charm in the minds of Indian people – they are not finding it lucrative enough. They probably see India having much better opportunities and prospects in coming years (This is my feeling, not backed by any data)

How does it affect India?

I think it is great for India, we are retaining much needed talent here – the brain drain is reducing. You may want to read a hotly debated article – Free the H-1Bs, Free the Economy – by Vivek Wadhwa on Techcrunch.

But on the flip side, India is loosing a lot on foreign remittances which form a major part of Indian Economy. U.S contributes to nearly 44% of all foreign remittances in India. With less people going to foreign shores, the remittances are going to come down, thereby affecting our economy to a certain extent !

Whatever the reason, the much sought after H1B Visa seems to have loosing its premium status.

  1. Immigration1 says

    I think with all these reasons one is people become intelligent and aware about H1b visa pros as well as cons.

  2. online comedy show says

    Earlier companies used to say America does not have enough engineers ……..
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    Seems as if America does have enough engineers to do the job.

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  3. Ravi says

    Sorry, but you have got few facts wrong. No, there is no time limit to fill up the quota. So one can file till April 2010 to fill up this quota. It is mandatory that Oct 1 be start date for all H-1B, that is the first possible date on April-1.


  4. Bolt says

    H1-B is an American word which means ‘dalit’.

  5. Martin says

    Pls correct the statement in Bold letters. “More than 20,000 H1B visa’s are still vacant and there are less than 3 weeks remaining to fill that up” .Actually one can continue to file for H1-B visa’s till it dry up or till the end of next financial year ,.i.e Sep 30.2010. Another point your missed is the demand for H1-B dried up not due to economical factors alone ,but fraudulent consulting companies are being audited by USCIS for malpractices and they are afraid to even file.

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