To All H1B Seekers – Beware of Hidden Traps
Ever since I wrote the post “Evil Called Desi Consultants”, I get lot of emails and comments in my blog asking me advice in identifying good consultants that sponsor HIB for jobs in
This friend P was my colleague in a software company I worked in Chennai. He changed few companies since then – all in the hope that his new company will send him to his dream land –
One fine morning in July the agent of the consultant called and informed that he couldn’t make it through the lottery. The agent promised to pay him back the money as soon as he gets the money from the consultant back in US. This was the last he has heard from the consultant. My friend did all the talking over phone to the agent of the consultant and now that number is not working. He was royally cheated by some thug. He doesn’t even have any proof of the money he gave to the consultant. I still cannot believe how a person can give Rs. 3,00,000 to some one without any proof. Maybe he was thinking about the dollars he is going to earn once he lands in the
This is about another of my friend S. We stayed in the same mansion in Chennai. He was working in a good software company in Chennai with a good pay even when I was in
So to command respect from his colleagues my friend started looking out for consultants that can apply for his H1B visa. He landed with a consultant and he ended up paying around Rs. 2,00,000 to process his H1B visa. He was lucky to get through the lottery and he was very happy about it. So far so good. This September end he went to
For my friend P he lost his money and visa while the friend S just lost the money. My understanding is that friend S can still transfer his H1B to a different consultant and go for a visa stamping. I am sure these stories are not isolated ones. Software engineers in
DO’s and DON’T’s
I am a firm believer that these kind of “traps” can be avoided if one uses ones common sense and does some research before paying the money. Most of them who apply for H1B visas from India get carried away by the lucrative prospects the consultant tells them prior to applying for H1B visa and get money from them. The applicants thus blindfolded, believe the consultants and fall into their trap. Here are some pointers you can follow and thus avoid getting cheated.
- Paying any consultant for your H1B is illegal by law. If a consultant asks for money to file for a H1B visa, understand one thing – they are in this business to make some quick bucks with zero investments. Bottom line – NEVER PAY A PENNY TO A CONSULTANT FOR H1B. If you pay and get a H1B at some point there is a good chance that it make come back and hurt you.
- Before you select your consultant for filing H1B visa do some basic homework. The easiest way is to Google search and you may be able to find more about the consultant. You may be able to hit upon some positive or negative comments about the consultant. But when you do that beware of few things – Consultants may write good reviews of themselves and post it in the internet to fool a prospective employee. Also another thing, some shady consultants do change the name of the company often or some of the consultants may have more than one consultancy. When a consultant finds that his consultancy is blacklisted by the USCIS the easiest thing for him to do is to start another company with another name. So if the Google search returns no result or only a good result don’t think the consultant is good. This is just the first step. The consultant “may” be good.
- Once you find out that the consultant “may” be good, the next step is to try and find out someone who has worked/working with that consultant. With the advancement in information technology it may not be tough to find someone who actually works for the consultant. If possible talk to them over phone. Try to avoid accepting offers from consultants who just started their business. Any permanent resident in US can start a consultancy and most of the times the thought of quick bucks make them do that. Lack of professionalism will be hallmark of such companies and try your best not to join such companies.
- If the consultant who is going to hire you doesn’t care about your educational qualification, your experience etc and tells you that you are sure to get a well paying job and doesn’t conduct any interview before hiring you in their consultancy, then you are in for trouble. Those consultants just need “human bodies” and not your expertise.
- Another thing I have noticed about people applying for H1B visa from
. They will tell “Let me first somehow land in US through some consultant and then once I am in US somehow I can manage something better”. This attitude makes them pay for the visa and file H1B with shady consultants. This way of thinking not only invites trouble for them but denies another genuine candidate who has a “real job” in hand, a visa. India
Before taking all the pain in India to apply for H1B through these consultants just remember thing one – With the declining dollar value and increasing job opportunities in India is it worthwhile to land in the US with a visa sponsored by a shady consultant, sit on bench for a long period of time and struggle to get a job?