CFGI Quoted – “H-1B Visa Reform Bill Targets Heavy Users”


“Employers with one-fifth or more of their U.S. workforce holding H-1B visas and the companies with which they do business will have more legal compliance obligations if legislation that recently passed the House Judiciary Committee is enacted into law.

“The Protect and Grow American Jobs Act (H.R. 170), sponsored by Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., would make several substantive changes to existing rules for H-1B-dependent employers, including establishing new wage and nondisplacement requirements, eliminating exemptions, and increasing enforcement.

“…President Donald Trump has promised to reform the H-1B visa program, and Issa's bill is the first such legislative effort that has passed committee. 

“…House leadership may choose to bring the bill up for a vote, but there is no clear path forward for it in the Senate unless it were linked to must-move legislation, said Rebecca Peters, director of government affairs at the Council for Global Immigration…

“…The bill eliminates the master's degree exemption and adopts a new formula for salary exemptions. ‘Updates to the H-1B-dependent exempt worker wage are overdue as there have been no updates since 1998,’ Peters said. She explained that in the first year after enactment of H.R. 170, for an H-1B worker to qualify as exempt, his or her salary must be the lesser of $90,000 or the mean wage for the occupation in the geographic area of employment. By the second year after enactment of the bill, H-1B workers would need to receive the lesser of $135,000 or the greater of $90,000 and the mean wage. The dollar amounts would be adjusted every three years based on the Consumer Price Index.” 

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