Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, we have some bad news for H1B visa holders, some very very alarming statistics. If you want to know what they are watch this video.
H1B Visas and Rate of Denials
Based on a recent statistic, between 2015 through 2019 there has been a significant increase in H1B visa denials. H1B visa denials have quadrupled in denial rates.
Similarly, the volume of requests for evidence issued to H1B petitioners have increased by 60 percent.
The H-1B season for fiscal year 2021 will bring some important changes. Firstly, USCIS has imposed a new online electronic registration requirement for H1B petitioners to streamline the H1B lottery process.
When we see a quadrupling in the rate of H1B visas denied for strong H1B petitions, it is apparent that the government is trying to send a message, which is that they want to limit the amount of people who can actually file for H1B visas. In the requests for evidence we have received for H1B extensions and transfers, we see a trend in which USCIS is using the most narrow interpretation of what a “specialty occupation,” is which by definition limits the pool of candidates eligible to receive an H1B visa.
We are seeing almost automatic denials for our marketing and business positions because USCIS is being so restrictive in how they interpret and define a “specialty occupation.” USCIS is taking the position that marketing and business positions are not “specialty occupations.”
USCIS has time and time again refused to accept the complexity of these positions, legal arguments in support of a finding that these positions are in fact specialty occupations, and ignored expert opinions supporting such positions as “specialty occupations.”
From what we have seen in our own filings and from conversations we have had with other attorneys and law offices, it is becoming increasingly difficult to get H1B visas approved for positions and occupations are were normally approved without difficulty in the past.
Unfortunately it is now a fact that H1B visas are being denied at a very high rate, and requests for evidence are being issued at an increasing rate because USCIS is trying to narrow the playing field for those who qualify to work in the United States under the H1B visa program.
This coming H1B season we are expecting to see more of that.
Unfortunately this will mean that our office will have to significantly change our approach to tackling H1B visas and make our intake process a lot more selective.
The increase in H1B denial rates and requests for evidence has unfortunately discouraged employers from hiring H1B workers, and instead jobs that could be performed in the United States are going overseas.
This is the sad reality of what is happening with the state of H1B visas and it does not look like it will change anytime soon.
If you are thinking of applying for H1B or if you are an employer seeking to hire H1B workers you should know that the process is going to get tougher. Our office is preparing to deal with this ongoing situation. We will not be deterred from fighting difficult requests for evidence and will keep fighting for our clients.