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For Small Firms, Visas Are a Big Headache

Wall Street Journal (08/21/13) Angus Loten

As major technology firms fight for an increase in H-1B visas, small companies say they cannot compete with larger players even if the annual cap is raised. Most applications are filed by startups and small employers, says the Brookings Institution, but those companies usually do not have the human resource departments needed to manage the paperwork associated with H-1B visas or the funds required for legal costs. Just 30% of H-1B visa applications proceed beyond the preliminary stage of the process. Temporary worker programs such as H-1B need “simplified procedures” to help smaller employers hire necessary workers, according to the Bipartisan Policy Center.