USCIS Publishes Final Rule For Certain Employment-Based Immigrant and Nonimmigrant Visa Programs

News Release from Jewell Stewart & Pratt PC The final rule “Retention of EB-1, EB-2 and EB-3 Immigrant Workers and Program Improvements Affecting High-Skilled Nonimmigrant Workers,” was published today in the Federal Register, and will take effect 60 days later (January 17, 2017). This is notable as it will be effective before the inauguration of the new president two days later.

This rule is concerned with creating and amending regulations related to employment-based visa programs and is intended to better enable U.S. employers in retaining high-skilled nonimmigrant workers through temporary and permanent sponsorship, and to provide job flexibility and certainty to foreign workers who have been in the U.S. for some time.

Jewell Stewart & Pratt will be posting analysis on the rule next week, in the interim, the highlights are:

  • Retention of approved immigrant visa petitions (I-140) and priority dates.
  • H-1B extensions beyond the sixth year.
  • Job portability for H-1B workers and for those who are in the final step of the permanent residence process.
  • Definition of nonprofit entity for H-1B cap exemption.
  • Grace periods for nonimmigrant workers.
  • Employment authorization in compelling circumstances for certain beneficiaries (and their dependents) of an approved I-140 petition, as well as employment authorization automatic extensions in certain circumstances.

© Jewell Stewart & Pratt PC 2016