[FoRK] professional/legal networking and/or advice for a friend from India

kelley <kelley at inkworkswell.com> on Tue Oct 23 21:14:11 PDT 2007

Hiya --

I'm asking around to see if I can find some help for a good friend of mine 
from work. I'll call him "K". My team lead and the department manager are 
both from India but came here on education visas originally, so they're 
unfamiliar with the ins and outs for those who obtain work visas via 
consultancies.

K signed a contract with a consulting outfit in NJ, which sponsored his 
visa. They then subcontracted K to a recruiter in Virginia who placed him 
in a six month contract-to-hire position. Similarly, I was on a 
contract-to-hire, and came on board two months ago. Krishna and I became 
friends, working together on a large web programming project. The company's 
ready to hire him, but the glitch, as you probably know, is that the NJ 
company that sponsored his Visa made him sign an 18 month contract stating 
that he could work for no one else. If he broke the contract, they'd fine 
him and make him pay the court fees and attorney costs.

My employer's lawyer said the only thing they could do is sponsor him for 
his visa, which they are doing. But my boss doesn't really think much of 
the company's attorneys. She thinks he should get his own attorney, 
concerned that the consultancy in NJ will still try to make him hold to the 
18 month contract.

I asked K if he could just negotiate directly with the NJ consulting 
company, asking them how much it would cost to buy out of the contract. He 
was adamant that this wasn't possible. They'd pull his visa immediately, he 
said. My boss thinks K should talk to an attorney to find out if there's 
anything he can do or perhaps the attorney might prove a better way to 
handle negotiations for a buy out.

The consultancy is in NJ, and I'm not sure if the contract is under NJ law 
-- or if it's incorporated in a no corporation tax state like Delaware or 
Florida. I'll know by 9 am EST tomorrow, though. In the meantime, perhaps 
just contacting attorneys in the field might give us leads, even if they're 
practicing in a different state. Alternatively, is there a web site, blog, 
email list, or forum that might be of help to him? That might be useful, too.


Thank you for suggestions.


Kelley




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