H-2B Update: final rule on additional visas expected 5/8/19 Email
Monday, May 06, 2019 12:00 AM

H-2B Update: final rule on additional visas expected 5/8/19

The following update was sent to several Congressional offices regarding the status of the rule that will release the approved 30,000 additional H-2B visas.

Good Morning,

We are calling to your attention the forthcoming announcement to be released by the Department of Homeland Security later today. Starting on the expected date of May 8, 2019, eligible petitioners seeking additional H-2B workers, can file Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker, and must submit a supplemental attestation on Form ETA 9142-B-CAA-3 with their petition. Details on eligibility and filing requirements are available in the final rule and on the Increase in H-2B Nonimmigrant Visas for FY 2019 at USCIS.gov. Note that the rule is expected to be published and effective on May 8, 2019. USCIS will begin accepting petitions after the rule is published.

DHS, DOL to Publish Joint Rule for Additional Visas for Returning Foreign Workers

Today, Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Kevin K. McAleenan announced that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Labor will publish a joint rule making available an additional 30,000 H-2B temporary nonagricultural worker visas for Fiscal Year 2019. These supplemental H-2B visas are available only to returning workers who received an H-2B visa, or were otherwise granted H-2B status, during one of the last three fiscal years (FY 2016, 2017, or 2018), and availability is restricted by prioritizing only those businesses who would suffer irreparable harm without the additional workers.

“The Department of Homeland Security continues to urge lawmakers to pursue a long-term legislative fix that both meets employers’ temporary needs while fulfilling the president’s Buy American and Hire American executive order to spur higher wages and employment rates for U.S. workers,” said Acting Secretary McAleenan. “The truth is that Congress is in the best position to establish the appropriate number of H-2B visas that American businesses should be allocated without harming U.S. workers. Therefore, Congress – not DHS – should be responsible for determining whether the annual numerical limitations for H-2B workers set by Congress need to be modified and by how much, and for setting parameters to ensure that enough workers are available to meet employers’ temporary needs throughout the year.”

Details on the increase in H-2B Nonimmigrant Visas for FY 2019 can be found alongside the temporary final rule, which is expected to be posted for public inspection on Monday, May 6, 2019.

DHS is committed to ensuring that our immigration system is implemented lawfully and that American workers are protected. If members of the public have information that a participating employer may be abusing this program, DHS invites them to submit information to [email protected] and include information identifying the H-2B petitioning employer and relevant information that leads them to believe that the H-2B petitioning employer is abusing the H-2B program.

Thank you.

Office of Legislative Affairs
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Washington, DC 20528

We will share the final rule when it is published. You can view a pre-publication copy of the final rule here: https://s3.amazonaws.com/public-inspection.federalregister.gov/2019-09500.pdf