H-1B applications: The Joe Biden government will officially remove a proposed rule which expected to narrow the definition of specialty occupation. Which would restrict who would be eligible to apply for an H-1B work permit. The rule, presented by the past Donald Trump government had not been implemented as it had been vacated by a US court in December last year. A final rule with this impact will be issued in the Federal Register on Wednesday. This rule removes the interim final rule (IFR), Strengthening the H-1B Nonimmigrant Visa Classification Program, from the Code of Federal Regulations.
The IFR, issued in October 2020, called to bring about changes in the definitions of a third-party worksite, employer-employee relationship, and specialty occupation. All of which would have confined the ability of services companies to put H-1B visa holders. At the client or third-party worksite, impacting Indian companies. It also called for restricting the educational qualifications needed to be eligible for an H-1B visa. Which again would have had an adverse impact on Indian candidates.
Relief for Indian firms as Biden govt removes Trump-era rule restricting H-1B applications
Every year, the US issues 85,000 new H-1B work visas, about 70% of which go to Indian nationals. In the last few years, the share of visas gave to Indian services companies has dropped altogether. In part on account of stricter visa approval norms.
Immigration experts had said at the time that had this rule been executed. It would have significantly modified the H-1B system. Doug Rand, prime supporter of Boundless Immigration said on Twitter that ‘This is one of Trump’s 3 major midnight guidelines to change (some would say destroy) the H-1B system.’
Recently, another claim was filed against another Trump-era rule calling to change the H-1B selection process. From a lottery system to one that favored higher wages. Experts said that this would affect the ability of smaller firms, medical clinics, and colleges. Also, for not-for-profit organizations to access highly skilled talent. It would also make it harder for graduating students to be eligible for occupations. As the salary requirements would be essentially higher than would normally be offered at that level.