New H-1B and other Non-Immigrant Visas Suspended Until End of Year For Individuals Outside the U.S.

On June 22, 2020, President Trump issued a Proclamation titled “Proclamation Suspending Entry of Aliens Who Present a Risk to the U.S. Labor Market Following the Coronavirus Outbreak” suspending certain nonimmigrant employment-based visas for aliens currently outside the U.S., including H-1B visas. The Proclamation was issued in response to the unemployment woes Americans are facing in light of the Coronavirus.  

In addition to suspending new H-1B visa petitions for foreign workers, the Proclamation also suspends H-2B visas for nonagricultural seasonal workers, L visas for intra-company transfers, and most J visas for cultural exchange visitors.  Per the Proclamation, the admission of these nonimmigrants “presents a significant threat to employment opportunities for Americans affected by the extraordinary economic disruptions caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.”

Notably, the suspension of these nonimmigrants visas does not apply to individuals who are already in the U.S. or to those who already have a valid nonimmigrant visa as of June 24, 2020. Nor does it apply to lawful permanent residents, spouses or children of a U.S. citizen, and any alien seeking to enter the U.S. to provide temporary labor or services essential to the United States food supply chain or other services deemed to be in the national interest. 

In addition to suspending certain nonimmigrant visas, the Proclamation also extends until at least December 31, 2020, the Trump Administration’s April 22, 2020 suspension of new green cards for immigrants not currently in the country.

Members of the Center for Workplace Compliance can read more HERE.

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