The POTUS has relaxed some rules for H1B visa holders. This comes after he had banned all kinds of foreign visas in order to protect “American Jobs”. The new relaxation stated the US will allow that H1B and L1 Visa holders to enter the United States if they are returning to the same jobs they had prior to the proclamation of the visa ban.
Who will be allowed into the US?
The State Advisory had taken out a list of jobs who they would allow into the US. This included people who are necessary for “the immediate and continued economic recovery of the United States”. The new order will also allow dependents (spouses and children) to travel with primary Visa Holders.
Further, the order also allows H1B visa holders who are working in the healthcare sector. This will include medical researchers working in an area with a substantial public health benefit. For e.g. cancer or communicable disease research. The administration also allowed technical specialists and senior-level managers who hold H1B visa.
The advisory clearly stated”
“Travel by applicants seeking to resume ongoing employment in the United States in the same position with the same employer and visa classification.”
H1B Visa Holders, though, need to meet 2 out of 5 of these conditions
- The employer must need you physically present in the country. Which means. if you are an employee who can perform essential function remotely, your Visa Ban stays.
The department stated, “The petitioning employer has a continued need for the services or labour to be performed by the H1B nonimmigrant in the United States. Cases where Labour Condition Applications (LCAs) was approved during or after July 2020 OR if the LCA was approved before July 2020, the consular officer must be able to determine from the visa application the continuing need of the employee with the US employer. But, if an applicant is currently performing or is able to perform the essential functions of the position for the prospective employer remotely from outside the US, this criteria cannot be met, the State Department said.”
- The employee (H1B Visa holder) must provide significant and unique contributions to an employer meeting a critical infrastructure need. This will include chemical, communications, dams, defence industrial base, emergency services, energy, financial services, food and agriculture, government facilities, healthcare and public health, information technology, nuclear reactors, transportation, and water systems.
- The wage rate paid to the H-1B applicant will exceed the existing wage rate by at least 15 per cent. If an H1B applicant receives a wage that meaningfully exceeds the prevailing wage, it suggests that the employee fills an important business need, the State Department said.
- Fourth, the H1B holder should be able to demonstrate his/her education, training and/or experience in the speciality occupation. That is, his work should reflect that he is adding something to the US economy.
- If the denial of the visa will cause financial hardship to the US employer, you can return to the US.
The exemptions for L1 visas are mostly similar to that of the H1B.
The ban on H1B Visa
On June 22, the US President Donald Trump had signed a proclamation. It said that till the end of the year in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, the US Government has banned all foreign visas. The State Department then issued the revised travel advisory, on Wednesday. It said that the exemptions are under the national interest category.
This move will likely help the Indian IT Professionals who thought that they had lost their jobs back when Trump banned H1B Visas.
By Laxitha Mundra Author at CiOL.