Even as uncertainty looms over the state of H-1B visas under the upcoming administration led by Donald Trump, recent changes made by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services have made it easier for those looking to procure a H-1B visa. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services has decided to provide a grace period of 60 days to terminated H-1B visa to either sort out the paperwork for new jobs or leave. Even though the existing rules have not states explicitly that terminated H-1B worker had to immediately leave, there have been cases wherein such workers had to quickly find a way to leave the country at the earliest. Decision making in these cases rest upon discretion of individual immigration officers.
However, now the immigration authorities have clarified that this is not the case which usually ended in an inhuman provision. Under the final rule that was published in November of 2016 and will be effective from 17 January, 2017, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services will allow H-1B workers who were terminated, a grace period of 60 days to either sort out their paperwork for new jobs or leave.
Another change will also prevent the revocation of I-140 by employers for employees who have held it for over 180 days but whose services were terminated. This in turn helps employees not lose their turn in the protracted green card process once they shift jobs.
Another important change that has been announced by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services is regarding the employment authorization for holders of H4 visa who come as spouses of H-1B visa holders. As per the revision, H4 workers will not have wait for their extension to get approved for them to continue working.
Workers who have the approved Form I-140 petition will be allowed to retain their priority date so long as approval of initial Form I-140 has not been revoked for will misrepresentation, fraud or material error. According to the final rule, petitions for Form I-140 that have been approved for 180 days or longer would not be subject to automatic revocation based only on withdrawal by petitioner or termination of the petitioner’s business.