One thing that our clients repeatedly come back to is this: how will President Trump’s policies affect my immigration case under H-1B status?
One of the changes that has been predicted is the removal of the H-1B lottery system in favor of a new system that gives preference to foreign professionals that earn a considerable salary. This has been proposed due to the fact that some consulting companies will flood the lottery with petitions, making it increasingly more difficult to secure a position for anyone else.Check for H1B Visa Process in UT Evaluators
Another possible change that might be made is the removal of the H-1B master’s degree exemption. Currently there is a bill in Congress that seeks to make several changes to the H-1B visa program. Among other changes, it aims to introduce an “advanced salary exemption” for those who earn over $90,000 annually. However, keep in mind that this bill is not a law yet and is still far away from becominng one.
President Trump has also commissioned a committee to ensure that the regulations around certain nonimmigrant visas are enforced. The first step for this is to have regular site visits to all employers that employ H-1B or L-1 visa workers. We will see if these regulations will increase for the 2019 season.
H-4 EAD Rule
In 2015, the Obama administration established a rule allowing H-4 holders (the spouses of H-1B holders) to apply for Employment Authorization Documents, allowing them to work while their spouse was under H-1B status. This is only available to the spouses of H-1B holders that have an I-140 immigrant visa (green card) petition pending with the USCIS. For H1B Visa Process Visit here
As of now, this rule still stands. However, the new administration is reconsidering this rule and aims to remove it, meaning that the spouses of H-1B holders will need to find other means of working under their H-4 visas. We will be sure to keep you posted on the latest developments.
While these changes have not yet been put into place or even approved, it is still important to be aware of the fluctuations involved with immigration law.