The Trump administration announced the plan for additional changes to the H1-B program for high-skilled workers. This new immigration reform will raise the wages that the US companies have to pay foreign workers and reduce eligibility criteria for those who wish to apply.
The H1-B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US firms and businesses to hire foreign workers in particular professions that require special expertise.
What Does This Mean for Future High-Skilled Foreign Workers?
The new regulations will directly affect both foreign workers and employers, but mainly tech companies that have supported and relied on the H1-B visa program and urged for their expansion.
At the same time, a new Department of Labor rule is slated to go into effect requiring employers to increase what they pay H-1B recipients in an effort to discourage companies from undercutting American workers. The Trump administration has accounted for its restraints on foreign work visas by declaring that American workers should be prioritized amid the economic downturn caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
This rule, which is said to take effect mid-December, would also tighten the eligibility for visa applicants. The rule would require the foreign workers to have a specific degree in the “specialty occupation” they apply for, rather than any college degree. Some would also need to show how their studies provided “a body of highly specialized knowledge” for a potential job in the United States.
Kenneth T. Cuccinelli, the acting deputy secretary of homeland security, said he expects these changes to cut by one-third the number of petitions filed annually for the coveted visas. Immigration experts predict that these changes would be swiftly challenged in court because they avoided the normal regulatory process.
Business groups quickly filed a lawsuit over the executive order, arguing that the U.S. has benefited from temporary worker visa holders year after year.
Are You Worried You May Be Affected by the New H1-B Rules in the Future?
If you find yourself affected by this announcement and need legal assistance, contact VisaPlace today. All of our cases are handled by competent and experienced immigration professionals who are affiliated with VisaPlace. These professionals consist of lawyers, licensed paralegals, and consultants who work for Niren and Associates an award-winning immigration firm that adheres to the highest standards of client service.
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