As many people in the tech industry can attest, 2022 has been a down year, with many tech employers slashing payroll. Losing one’s job in a round of layoffs is traumatizing for most workers, but it is especially so if you’re a non-citizen who’s here on a temporary work visa. If you’re in the U.S. on an H-1B or another work visa and your employer lays you off, you must act quickly. If you have questions about your immigration status, be sure you get the advice you need by consulting an experienced Maryland immigration lawyer.
The 2022 tech layoffs hit especially hard in the social media and financial areas. As CNBC reported, Facebook parent Meta shed 11,000 jobs and Twitter cut 3,700. Cryptocurrency exchange platform Coinbase and online payment processor Stripe each laid off around 1,100 workers. On the year, tech employers have shed between 90,000-150,000 jobs (depending on who you ask,) with 45,000 of those happening in a November flurry of layoffs.
If you’re in this country on an H-1B visa, the termination of your employment doesn’t mean that your status immediately becomes “illegal,” but it does mean that the “clock” is on. The federal immigration regulations (specifically, 8 CFR Section 214.1) give you a 60-day “grace period” during which you can find a new employer to submit a new H-1B petition for you.