We spend a lot of time writing about problems with the immigration system. So it is a nice change of pace to share some good news. Reuters is reporting from the State Department that the Trump administration has no plans to cap H-1B work visas for nations that force foreign companies to store their data here in the U.S. The H-1B is used for skilled foreign workers in such fields as science, engineering, information technology, teaching, and accounting.
This is an update from previous reports that indicated that the administration had told India that it was considering restricting the H-1B visa programs for those foreign businesses with data storage equipment.
Part of Buy American Hire American
This clarification is coming to light because the Buy American Hire American executive order calls for a review of all worker visa programs, including the H-1B. The administration added that the executive order was separate from discussions with India regarding the flow of data across borders. This will continue next week when Secretary of State Mike Pompeo flies to India in late June to discuss strategic partnerships between the two countries. This meeting is also to address escalating tensions between the two countries regarding recent tariffs.
A major issue in California
Anything discussing skilled foreign labor leads to Silicon Valley, a significant landing pad for these workers. The president has repeatedly accused tech companies of replacing American workers with cheaper foreign workers on H-1B visas, 75% of which are from India.
Work visa applications updates
This shift to remove the cap is just one of many recent work visa changes. For example, this year was also supposed to be the beginning of the electronic application process requirement, but it has been suspended until the FY 2021 cap season, which begins annually in April.
Those with questions about work visa should contact an attorney who has experience with H-1B and other work visas. They will have the most up-to-date information regarding the application process. They can also help ensure that applications are filled out correctly and filed before the deadline. This helps improve the chances for success.