Visas for professionals – H-1B visas – become available for application on April 1st for a work start date no earlier than October 1st, 2010. The H-1B visa category is subject to quota – 65,000 visas worldwide per year. Usually the quota is gone within days of opening. Last year, however, the slow uptake was unprecedented – the quota lasted until December – because of global economic recession and outsourcing by US technology companies. It’s impossible to know what will happen this year but it would be prudent to err on the side of caution and apply early to avoid disappointment.

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