December 07, 2018
In a bid to increase the proportion of H-1B visa holders with graduate degrees from U.S. schools, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services proposed to adjust how registrants are selected for H1-B visas without changing the overall number of visas issued.
USCIS says the proposed regulation would increase the number of selected petitioners with a master's degree or higher from U.S. schools by 16 percent. With only 85,000 visas available, this is a zero-sum scenario—the selection of petitioners without such credentials would correspondingly decrease by 16 percent if USCIS' prediction holds true.
Under the proposed regulation:
Looking ahead: This marks the first of a number of promised proposed rulemakings by the Trump administration to the H-1B program. Others likely include revising the definitions of “specialty occupation,” “employment,” and “employer-employee relationship;” imposing requirements “designed to ensure employers pay appropriate wages to H-1B visa holders;” and revoking employment authorization from spouses of H-1B workers.