Those with business or tourist visas may apply for employment and conduct interviews in the US
The US has declared that anybody entering the nation on a B-1 or B-2 business or tourist visa may apply for new employment and even attend interviews, but they must make sure to alter their visa status before beginning a new position.
The most popular visa categories for a variety of purposes in the United States are B-1 and B-2 visas, sometimes known as "B visas." The B-1 visa is often provided for brief business visits, but the B-2 visa is typically given for travel for leisure.
The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) said in a letter in a series of tweets on Wednesday that nonimmigrant employees who are laid off may not be aware of their alternatives and may, in some cases, mistakenly believe they have no choice but to depart the country within 60 days.
A number of recent layoffs at businesses like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon resulted in the loss of employment for thousands of highly qualified foreign-born employees in the US, including Indians.
After the termination of their jobs to remain in the country, they are now battling to find new employment within the 60-day window allowed by their work visas.
The day after termination of employment, which is often calculated based on the final day on which a salary or pay is received, is when the maximum 60-day grace period begins.
If qualified, a nonimmigrant worker who has had their job terminated, whether willingly or involuntarily, may take one of various options to continue to be in the country for an authorized amount of time.
Examples include making an application for a "compelling circumstances" work authorization document, applying for adjustment of status, making a change of nonimmigrant status application, or being the recipient of a nonfrivolous petition to change employers.
The USCIS said that even if a nonimmigrant loses their prior nonimmigrant status, their length of authorized stay in the country may exceed 60 days if one of these events takes place within the up to 60-day grace period.
It warned that if the worker does nothing during the grace period, they and their dependents may have to leave the country in 60 days or when their authorized validity term expires, whichever comes first.
"The question of whether B-1 or B-2 statuses allow for job searching has been raised often. Yes, is the response. Job searching and job interviews are acceptable B-1 or B-2 activities, respectively "As stated by the USCIS in a series of tweets.
The USCIS further said that a petition and request for a change of status from B-1 or B-2 to an employment-authorized status must be accepted and the new status must take effect before commencing any new work.
Instead, the person must leave the US and be entered in an employment-authorised classification before starting the new work, the USCIS said, if the change of status request is rejected or the petition for new employment requests consular or port of entrance notice.
Two Indian-American organizations started an online petition last month requesting US President Joe Biden to increase the grace period for H-1B visa holders from two months to a year amid widespread layoffs in the US computer industry that have left many Indian professionals without jobs.
This implies that after being dismissed from a company, a foreign tech worker on an H-1B visa would have one year instead of the current 60 days to find a new employment before having to leave the country.
A non-immigrant visa called the H-1B permits US businesses to hire foreign nationals for specialized jobs that need for theoretical or technical competence.
It is essential to the hiring of tens of thousands of workers each year from nations like China and India by technology businesses.