US May Extend H-1B Visa Grace Period to 180 Days

The US H-1B visa grace period could be extended to 180 days from 60 days, according to a recommendation by the US President's Advisory Commission for Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities.
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The US President’s Advisory Commission for Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities have recommended extending the grace period for US H-1B visas from 60 days to 180 days.

The decision was made at the committee meeting on Tuesday and is intended to help immigrant workers in the country. The recommendations will now be forwarded to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

The Need for Extension

Ajay Bhutoria, a tech executive, argued for an extension of the grace period. He pointed out that the current grace period of 60 days was insufficient for finding a new job, especially given the bureaucratic obstacles involved.

According to Bhutoria, the extension will allow highly skilled workers to remain in the United States, which is beneficial to the economy.

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The Benefits of the Extension

If the extension is approved, highly skilled workers will have more time to find work, navigate complex paperwork for transferring H1-B status, and avoid delays at USCIS. According to Bhutoria, the insufficient grace period forces many H1-B workers to leave the country, resulting in a loss of skilled labour for the US.

Apart from extending the grace period, Bhutoria suggested that individuals with approved I-140 applications be granted employment authorization documents (EAD) and travel documents.

An approved I-140 petition indicates a step closer to obtaining permanent resident status in the United States. Bhutoria believes that granting EADs to these individuals will provide them with more job opportunities, better job security, and the ability to start a business.

It would also provide flexibility for staying at home, investing and building a life in the United States, and travelling freely without having to worry about visa stamping or appointments, as well as mental peace, better health, and staying connected with family members.

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USCIS Response

Bhutoria believes that the President’s Advisory Committee’s recommendation will be accepted by the USCIS. If approved, the extension will significantly improve the job prospects of highly skilled workers in the United States.

The proposal would also assist the United States in retaining talented individuals who might otherwise leave the country.


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Manish Khandelwal
Manish Khandelwal

Manish Khandelwal, a travel-tech enthusiast with over a decade of experience in the travel industry. Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Travelobiz.com, he's passionate about writing.

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