Silicon Valley has long attracted the world's best and brightest engineers with work visas. An H1-B visa has been the passage to America for many immigrant families. If you're a tech worker seeking to bring your family to the United States, you're probably concerned about how the temporary suspension of foreign work visas will affect your family's immigration status.
Stricter work visa rules could follow the suspension, according to family immigration attorneys.
Skilled Worker Visa Updates
In June, President Trump issued an executive order temporarily suspending both immigration and non-immigration applications, as well as green cards, until 2021.
If you're a skilled foreign worker with plans to work in the United States, the current suspension of processing foreign work visas will affect you. The order temporarily halts issuance of:
- H1-B visas – issued to skilled, university-educated employees for three to six years.
- L-1 visas – issued to workers transferring from a foreign subsidiary to a U.S. office for five months to five years.
If you're currently working in the United States on one of the above visas, your work status will not change. Furthermore, your spouse and children can join you on H-4 visas.
If you're not in the country working, your status is on hold. There are a number of exceptions, though, including medical, defense, law, food supply, and other occupations considered necessary to national defense, health, and security.
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
In June, the Supreme Court opposed the Trump administration's attempt to discontinue the DACA policies. Under DACA, a child under 18 can pursue his or her education, find employment, and serve in the army without risk of being deported. A number of tech giants have also mobilized against the DACA annulation, including Google, Apple, Facebook, and Microsoft.
The temporary visa suspensions are the first in a chain of immigration initiatives affecting the U.S. immigration system. Notably, the record-high U.S. unemployment levels have prompted a revision of immigration and non-immigration rules. The review will assess if the current rules disadvantage U.S. workers in the employment market.
Under the Trump administration, stricter immigration rules can be expected.
The review will especially target skilled workers. Some labor groups accuse companies not using the skilled worker visa program to bring cheap labor into the country. The high unemployment level is placing labor practices under a microscope.
A family immigration lawyer can help you understand how the changes could affect your immigration status and that of your family.
To learn more, contact a resource like The Law Office of John M. Bray, PLLC.