I have a friend that I worked with in a
tech company in the past. We would use collaboration tools to work on projects
together, and he fit a role in my current company perfectly. The company knows
that he lives overseas, and they have been working on getting him the
appropriate visa to come and work in the United States.
But there seems to be a problem.
He was supposed to come over at the start
of July, but he just sent corporate documentation that his visa has been
delayed. What happens with a delay? Will he still be able to enter the country,
or is this a major red flag?
There have been a lot of changes to immigration,
and the political atmosphere is making matters even worse.
Delays are common,
and we started to see delays start to increase at the end of 2017. Work permits took an average of 90 days
to complete, but this figure has risen to 135 – 150 days. There were also cases
where visa processing times were as long as seven months, or 210 days.
“According to data from the U.S. Customs and
Immigration Service, the information technology sector has been hit the hardest
by the Trump administration’s tightening of the H-1B visa program. In 2018, the
USCIS denied 80% of the new employment H-1B visa applications that were
submitted by Capgemini and 61% of the applications that were submitted by
Cognizant. The percentages of rejections for other tech companies ranged from
34% to 54%,” explains The Shapiro Law Group.
Your friend will have to wait to work in the
United States, and it’s very important that he not work in the United States at
this time. If he chooses to work in the US, he could limit his chances of
getting a visa.
Your friend may also want to seek another
temporary status to work in the US. Your employer should be able to work with
him to find a solution that works best for anyone. One issue that a lot of
applicants don’t understand is that there’s no means of speeding up the
Work permits cannot often be expedited, and if
you continue to push officials, it’s possible that it will only delay matters
The administration has also announced that all 24
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will be closed. Delays will increase
drastically as a result. Work permit renewals will also be slower since
background checks and new fingerprints are required upon renewal.
The best thing that your friend can do is go
through the process. If he is denied a visa, then your employer may work with a
lawyer that specializes in immigration law. Otherwise, it’s a game of sit and
wait as the government works on his application.
As far as there being a red flag, delays are so
common that officials probably haven’t gotten to the stage where a red flag
would pop up just yet.
Employers know that hiring immigrants is a
tedious process, and this is just one of the roadblocks in the process.