The Trump Administration announced a number of new initiatives to combat any supposed cases of fraud or abuse within the H-1B visa program. The Departments of Justice, Homeland Security, and Labor revealed plans for greater governmental collaboration against organizations, companies, or individuals who have violated the terms of the H-1B visa program.
The initiatives are on point with the goals outlined by the Trump Administration and campaign, and show that the Administration aims to expand agency influence while encouraging investigations against employers or employees allegedly taking advantage of the program.
These initiatives include encouraging the public to report alleged violations, by employers or employees, and relevant details to a dedicated USCIS email, and allegations of employer fraud and abuse to the Department of Labor.
The announcement further details increased administrative site visits by the USCIS Fraud Detection and National Security Unit to employers and foreign works who use or depend upon the H-1B program, while honing in on employers whose “basic business information” cannot be readily be validated, and targeting employers whose petitioning H-1B workers operate at another organization’s location.
The administration states that these targeted site visits will assist in confirming whether or not H-1B-dependent employers are abiding by recruitment attestation and salary requirements, and if these companies are making a “good faith effort” to hire American workers. The initiatives also stress that these random targeted site visits will be made to all H-1B employers both before and after any petition is adjudicated.
The Department of Labor indicated that it is considering changes in the Labor Condition Application in the future, a required aspect of the H-1B visa application process, while encouraging stakeholders on aspects that can be changed to better protect U.S. workers within these fields as well. The Department additionally stressed closer collaboration with the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security on cracking down on potential program violators.
The Justice Department additionally cautioned employers seeking H-1B visa petitioners against discrimination against potential U.S. employees and candidates, and indicated that the Department will increase its investigation of allegations of discrimination.
The D’Alessio Law Group is closely studying the current state of the H-1B program.
Now more than ever is it crucial to have expert legal resources when considering petitioning or compliance within the H-1B visa program. If you have questions regarding the program, or are seeking authoritative law professionals at this time, please contact the D’Alessio Law Group at (310) 909-3934 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org