Proposed H-1B Rule Could Overhaul Selection Process

A proposed rule could result in major changes in the H-1B visa category. This rule would change the H-1B visa lottery process and could also alter the educational composition of visa holders. Currently, USCIS offers 65,000 standard H-1B visas for skilled workers. Additionally, USCIS offers another 20,000 visas for workers with a U.S. master’s degree or higher. Any leftover visas from the second category are sent to the general pool. 

The proposed rule would change the way this process works. Under this rule, USCIS would place all applicants in the general 65,000 pool. If the general cap was reached, any additional U.S. advanced degree holders would then be redirected to the 20,000 pool, or what is commonly known as the “master’s cap.”

According to a regulatory plan, the Trump administration plans to publish the proposal within the month. The administration is projecting that this change could mean a fifteen percent increase in H-1B visa holders with U.S. advanced degrees. However, this could make it increasingly difficult for companies to hire workers under the H-1B program. 

If you are interested in learning more about the H-1B category, please contact our office to schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys today!

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