Trump May Issue Ban of Entry on These Statuses
On Tuesday, June 9th, an article released by Kuck Baxter Immigration discussed a possible potential proclamation that would cause detrimental consequences to a wide range of non-immigrant visa holders.
If issued, this proclamation would suspend the entry of certain non-immigrant workers for as long as 180 days. It is advised that visa holders of potentially affected categories (L-1, H-1B, H-2B, J-1) not travel abroad if currently in the U.S. and return immediately if abroad. This proclamation is predicted to be issued as early as this Thursday, but more likely on Friday afternoon.
The policies established by this proclamation, if implemented, would respectively: suspend entry of non-immigrant workers, make changes to existing OPT policies, make changes to necessary qualifications for H-1B petitions, broadly impact the H-4 visa, and last but not least, eliminate work authorization for asylum seekers, asylees, those with TPS, and refugees. Let us take a closer look at each of these policies.
Temporary Suspension of Entry for L-1, H-1B, H-2B, and J-1 Visa Holders
This policy would ban L-1, H-1B, H-2B, and some J-1 Visa holders from entering the U.S. for as long as 180 days. It is not clear whether L-1A managers and executives will be affected along with L1-B specialized knowledge employees; neither can it be asserted which J-1 categories, in particular, will be subject to this rule.
It is expected for this policy to make exceptions for workers of professions that are needed during the COVID-19 outbreak. Examples include health care professionals and some H-2B holders such as farmers, food-supply related workers, etc.
This rule would upset many companies in the U.S. if implemented since many companies rely on executives and professionals imported from China. This especially applies to IT and technology-related companies. Therefore, lawsuits opposing this rule can take place soon after it is introduced.
New OPT Policies
It is possible that STEM OPT programs, which last for a maximum duration of 24 months with extension, will be limited to only 12 months. In the meantime, regular OPT permissions will be exclusively accessible to students who graduate at the top 15% of their class instead of all participants.
New H-1B Qualifications
The filing fee may be skyrocketing to the price of $20,000 per case. Critical terms such as “employer-employee relationship” and specialty occupation will be redefined. Employers will be permitted to hire at level 1 wages but only for a 2-year increment. After the extension, employees must be paid at least level 2 salaries.
H-4 Visa Cancellation
The H-4 visa, which is issued to immediate family members of H-1B visa holders, has a chance of being rescinded with the introduction of this proclamation.
Elimination of Work Authorization for Asylum Seekers, Asylees, TPS Holders, and Refugees
This predicted policy of the proclamation remains highly controversial since, according to the 1967 Geneva Protocol, the U.S. must provide work authorization to people with the above status.
Although these terms seem very hostile and once implemented officially, it will cause significant inconveniences and difficulties in people’s lives with statuses mentioned above.
However, there is no need to panic as the above terms are nothing more than predictions until Trump officially announced it. We still strongly recommend that if your status is included in this potential proclamation, you should return to the U.S. as soon as possible if currently abroad and remain in the country if not. Please avoid traveling abroad if possible.
该命令会造成个别种类的非移民工作签证（L-1, H-1B, H-2B, J-1）持有者被禁入境长达至180天。我们强烈建议该种类签证持有者若现处美国境外，尽早返美。若处于美国境内，如非必要不要出境。此禁令最早被推测将于周四发布，但周五发布的可能性更大。
暂时禁止L-1, H-1B, H-2B, 及部分J-1签证持有者入境
可以被延期至时长共两年的STEM OPT 可能被改至一年。正常OPT可能只对每年成绩为毕业生内前15%的学生开放。