H-1B The United States Department of Labor

The H-1B visa program allows U.S. employers to hire temporary nonimmigrant workers for specialty occupations. Specialty occupations are defined as occupations requiring the application of a "body of highly... more +
The H-1B visa program allows U.S. employers to hire temporary nonimmigrant workers for specialty occupations. Specialty occupations are defined as occupations requiring the application of a "body of highly specialized knowledge and the attainment of at least a bachelor's degree or its equivalent." Examples of specialty occupations include chemistry, mathematics, engineering, medicine, and architecture, to name a few. Individuals may not apply for H-1B visas; they are distributed only through the approval of employer petitions. In order to protect U.S. workers from unfair competition resulting from the program, the rules require that employers pay nonimmigrant workers equivalent wages to similarly-situated U.S. workers or the industry's prevailing wage. H-1B visas are subject to a yearly cap which is currently set at 85,000.   less -
News & Analysis as of

April 1 Deadline for Filing H-1B Visa Petitions Approaches

As of April 1, 2016, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting H-1B petitions for Fiscal Year 2017 (FY2017). Upon approval, petitions for FY2017 will allow foreign nationals to work for...more

Powerball for H-1B Visas

Lottery mania has been sweeping the nation as Powerball winnings exceeded $1 billion for the first time. For highly skilled foreign nationals and the employers who desire to employ them, a different kind of lottery mania is...more

Critical Filing Dates for FY 2017 H-1B Cap

Employers who wish to sponsor H-1B workers for Fiscal Year 2017 can begin filing petitions on April 1, 2016 for a start date of October 1, 2016. The H-1B visa is used by businesses who wish to employ foreign nationals to...more

8th Circuit Denies Department Of Labor

Traditionally, the Department of Labor (“DOL”) has used the complaint of a single H-1B employee to investigate a company’s entire H-1B program. Following the latest decision from the 8th Circuit, this approach is likely to...more

USCIS to Accept Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions for FY2017 Beginning April 1, 2016

Friday, April 1, 2016 marks the opening of the filing period for new H-1B petitions to be counted against the annual H-1B quota for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017. H-1B petitions subject to the annual quota, commonly known as the...more

H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions Will Be Accepted by USCIS Beginning April 1; Employers Urged to Start Process Now as Lottery Is...

April 1 is the first day U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will accept H-1B cap-subject petitions for the 2016 allotment of visas for foreign national professionals in specialty occupations. Cap-subject H-1B...more

Safe Harbor Period for H-1B Petitions Following Job Site Changes Ends January 15

Employers who have moved H-1B workers from one location to another may need to file new H-1B petitions, rather than rely on a prior approval. For moves that already occurred, the employer must file within the “safe harbor...more

The Race to File H-1B Work Visas on April 1, 2016

We are releasing this Alert to remind employers of the fast approaching April 1, 2016 deadline for filing H-1B work visa petitions on behalf of foreign employees who need sponsorship for long-term work authorization in the...more

Legislation Proposed to Reform H-1B and L-1 Visa Programs

In November, Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Chairman of Senate Judiciary Committee, and Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Assistant Democratic Leader, introduced a new bipartisan legislation seeking to reform and reduce fraud...more

Obama Administration Announces $100 million in TechHire Grants to Support IT, Cybersecurity, Broadband Sector Training

On November 17, 2015, the Department of Labor (DOL) and the White House issued a funding announcement releasing $100 million in grants as a part of the Obama Administration’s TechHire Initiative, which specifically calls out...more

DOL Misclassification Guidance on Independent Contractors Could Affect Certain Nonimmigrant Visa Classifications

On July 15, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor issued guidance to clarify when workers can be classified as independent contractors or employees under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). This Administrator’s Interpretation...more

When Transferring Employees to the U.S., Foreign Employers Should Consider Impact if Proposed Changes to Overtime Exemption Are...

On July 6, 2015, the Department of Labor (“DOL”) proposed a revision to the “white collar” overtime exemption rule. As explained by Littler when it testified before the House Subcommittee, “the proposed white collar...more

A Potential Federal Government Shutdown: The Immigration Implications for Employers

Congress has until September 30, 2015 to reach an agreement on the 2016 Fiscal Year federal budget. If an agreement to fund the federal government is not reached, immigration processes are expected to be impacted as they were...more

USCIS Issues New Procedures for Determining Time for Filing Green Card Application

On September 9, 2015, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) promulgated new procedures for determining the visa availability date for individuals waiting to file employment- and family-based applications for...more

August 2015 Immigration Alert

I. USCIS Issues Guidance on When an Amended H-1B Petition Is Required After Matter of Simeio Solutions, LLC - On July 21, 2015, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) released a policy memorandum...more

White House Releases Report on Improving and Modernizing the Immigration System to Meet 21st Century Needs

Earlier this month, the White House released a review of the United States’ immigration policies in a report entitled, “Modernizing & Streamlining our Legal Immigration System for the 21st Century.” The Report highlights key...more

USCIS Issues Final Guidance on When to File an Amended or New H-1B Petition After Matter of Simeio Solutions, LLC – But Cautions...

On July 21, 2015, USCIS issued Final Guidance for agency adjudicators regarding applying the precedent decision, Matter of Simeio Solutions, LLC. As we previously reported, Matter of Simeio radically reinterpreted the...more

Recent changes to employing foreign workers

This month, we take a survey of recent changes affecting employers’ ability to attract and retain foreign workers. L-1B visa denials According to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ (USCIS) data released under a...more

New USCIS Guidance Has Significant Consequences for H-1B Employers

On April 9, 2015, the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a precedential decision (Matter of Simeio Solutions, 26 I&N Dec. 542) that significantly impacts U.S....more

Recent Changes in Off-Site Employment Requirements

There have been recent changes in the immigration world regarding the requirements for off-site employment. Both the H-1B visa category and the L-1B visa category, which are two of the more common employment-based visa...more

USCIS Now Formally Requiring Amended Petitions When H-1B Worksite Changes

On April 9, 2015, the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a binding, precedential ruling that all U.S. employers must file an amended petition with the agency...more

Stay on Order Affecting H-2B Program is Extended by One Month

On Wednesday, the Florida federal court in Perez v. Perez, No. 3:14-cv-682, extended the stay on its March 4, 2015 order vacating the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) 2008 H-2B regulations order by one month through May 15,...more

Employment Flash - March 2015

In This Issue: - Supreme Court Rejects Sixth Circuit Yard-Man Vested Benefits Presumption - Supreme Court Revives Pregnancy Discrimination Light Duty Case - NY Wage Theft Protection Act Amended - Senate...more

District Court Orders USCIS to Grant H-1B for Market Research Analyst Position

As previously reported, certain job positions present a particular challenge when requesting H-1B specialty occupation status from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). ...more

Overcoming H-1B Challenges – How to Prove Specialty Occupation Eligibility

The most common H work visa is the H-1B which is for “specialty occupations.” Specialty occupation means an occupation which requires theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge in fields...more

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