Ban on OPT

Ban on OPT

Posted on 12 May 2014 Views ( 899 )

In a letter to DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson last week, US Senator Charles Grassley called for a ban on OPT (Optional Practical Training).

The call for a moratorium on OPT (Optional Practical Training) by US Senator has left thousands of International students in a shock.

Almost six lakhs International students are getting benefited by OPT every year.

As per OPT, Students are permitted to work up to 27 months as per OPT provides work permit for students up to 27 months after completion of under graduation, Masters, or PhD in USA.

Grassley has listed out the following reasons to ban OPT program: 

  • US Federal Govt is totally clueless about International students and their whereabouts like their occupation and where they are staying etc; it seriously lacks information because of an improperly maintained database and this result in overstay of the students. Sometimes students are allowed to remain in United States even for two years after their graduation.
  • Students are misusing the OPT in many ways including the recent terror attacks which were done by immigrants who entered into US as foreign students.
  • Also they are trying to get unauthorized employment like working in a different field which is not related to their US Education. Because of the above incidents of non-compliance and fraud, OPT is at risk.
  • There is no special temporary work permit for OPT students. Homeland Security is allowing International students to work on OPT without doing any background or asking for any specific visa. This leads to a situation where students are taking OPT as granted.
  • Allowing unlimited number of International students to work in USA has led to a situation
  • OPT allows tens of thousands of International students to work in USA which has raised a caveat to the opportunities of US Citizens.
  • There is no payroll tax for student or for Employer for the entire 29 month period. This is saving up to 10000$ for student/ employer for a hire. It means $10000 is taken away by each OPT job from US Govt. This gives an edge to the International students over US Citizens and US Employers are considering OPT students over US Citizens for saving tax money.

What Grassley Asked about OPT Ban

In this regards, Grassley has asked DHS to look into the whole thing and certify that how far the program is secure. He opinioned that program should be suspended until the department can trace all the international students with OPTS and clears all the issues that fogged around the program.

Currently, International students who are studying in UK should leave the nation upon their completion of their degree. Now with Grassley’s comments MS in US also is on the verge.