USCIS DEFINES NEW GUIDELINES FOR EMPLOYERS FILING H1-B VISA APPLICATIONS

On February 22, 2018, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services issued a Guidance to employers that in order for H-1B Visa applications to be approved, employers must provide contracts and itineraries for employees who will work at a third-party location or jobsite. The USCIS Guidance makes clear that petitions must show by a “preponderance of evidence” that the beneficiary will be employed in a specialty occupation and that the employer will maintain an employer-employee relationship with the beneficiary for the duration of the requested validity period.

The USCIS Guidance requires that when H-1B beneficiaries are placed at work sites, employers must demonstrate that they have specific and non-speculative qualifying assignments for the H-1B beneficiaries, in a specialty occupation for that beneficiary for the duration of the entire time requested in the Petition.  While an approval may be up to 3 years, the USCIS, in its discretion may limit the time period allowable to an H1-B beneficiary, based on an actual employer-employee relationship and the H-1B beneficiary being placed in non-speculative work.[1]

[1] USCIS Strengths Protections to Combat H-1B Abuses, USCIS.gov//http:www.uscis.gov/news-releases/uscis-strengthens-protections-combat-h-1b-abuses

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