IMPLEMENTATION LEVEL

National

AFFECTED FLOW

Inflow

ANNOUNCED AS TEMPORARY

No

NON-TRADE-RELATED RATIONALE

No

ELIGIBLE FIRMS

all

JUMBO

No

TARIFF PEAK

No
← back to the state act
Inception date: 03 Apr 2017 | Removal date: open ended
Still in force

Labour market access

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on March 3, 2017 that starting April 3, 2017, it will temporarily suspend premium processing for all H-1B petitions. The H-1B is a non-immigrant visa under the Immigration and Nationality Act that allows U.S. employers temporarily to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations. The regulations define a "specialty occupation" as requiring theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge in a field of human endeavor, including but not limited to biotechnology, chemistry, architecture, engineering, mathematics, physical sciences, social sciences, medicine and health, education, law, accounting, business specialties, theology, and the arts, and requiring the attainment of a bachelor's degree or its equivalent.

This suspension may last up to 6 months. The temporary suspension applies to all H-1B petitions filed on or after April 3, 2017. While premium processing is suspended, petitioners may submit a request to expedite an H-1B petition if they meet the criteria on the Expedite Criteria webpage (https://www.uscis.gov/node/43424). It is the petitioner’s responsibility to demonstrate that they meet at least one of the expedite criteria, and USCIS encourages petitioners to submit documentary evidence to support their expedite request. The agency will review all expedite requests on a case-by-case basis and requests are granted at the discretion of the office leadership.

USCIS says that this temporary suspension will help it to reduce overall H-1B processing times. Temporarily suspending premium processing, according to thr agency, will enable it to process long-pending petitions and prioritize adjudication of H-1B extension of status cases that are nearing the 240-day mark. 

According to USCIS data, the principal recipient countries of these visas are Canada, China, India, Japan, Korea, Mexico, the Philippines, and the United Kingdom.

AFFECTED COUNTRIES

MAP
TABLE
EXPORT

AFFECTED SECTORS AND PRODUCTS

711 Financial, insurance & pension services, excl. investment banking
712 Investment banking services
713 Insurance & pension services, excl. social security
714 Reinsurance services
715 Services auxiliary to financial services
716 Services auxiliary to insurance & pensions
717 Services of holding financial assets
811 Research & development in natural sciences & engineering
812 Research & development in social sciences & humanities
813 Interdisciplinary research & development
814 Research & development originals
821 Legal services
822 Accounting, auditing & bookkeeping services
823 Tax consultancy & preparation services
831 Management consulting & management services; ITC services
833 Engineering services
834 Scientific & other technical services
836 Advertising services & provision of advertising space or time
837 Market research & public opinion polling services
838 Photography services & photographic processing services
839 Other professional, technical & business services
841 Telephony & other telecommunications services
842 Internet telecommunications services
844 News agency services
925 Tertiary education services
929 Other education & training services
931 Human health services
951 Services furnished by employers & professional organizations
962 Performing arts & other live entertainment event presentation
969 Other amusement & recreational services

Please report this page in case you detect an inaccuracy in its content.