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Indian IT companies may sponsor more green cards

Indian software companies could step up sponsorship of coveted US green cardsfor employees as part of tactics to mitigate the effects of a planned American law to make work visas harder and costlier to obtain. By doing so, they can expand the pool of employees with access to work in the US, analysts said, giving Indian companies greater leeway as they try and cope with the effects of the planned law.

The reason companies are planning to increase green-card sponsorships is linked to rules which govern the way visa allocation is counted in a bill passed by the US Senate some weeks ago. The Senate bill imposes caps on the number of work visas companies can seek every year, a limit which depends on the number of H-1B visas for specialty occupations a company already has.

Since the bill excludes 'intending immigrants' who have applied for green cards while counting the number of work visas a company owns, Indian firms are seeing great merit in the idea of sponsoring visa-holders for green cards. "We are already ramping up hiring of workers in the United States and will start offering more green card sponsorships to our employees," said PR Chandrasekhar, chief executive officer of Hexaware Technologies, which is based in Mumbai. "With these steps we think any impact of the rules on us would be very limited."
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