These provisions are part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019, but continue into 2023.




  • 0 harmful
  • 0 neutral
  • 1 liberalising
Inception date: 13 Aug 2018 | Removal date: 31 Dec 2023
Still in force

Labour market access

On August 13, 2018, President Trump signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019. One provision of this law addresses labor-market access by holders of H-2B workers on Guam and in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI). Section 1045 of the NDAA leaves intact the requirement under current law that employers on Guam and in the CNMI are exempt from the national H-2B cap and other H caps until December 31, 2029, but amends that law to provide that an otherwise qualified alien who seeks admission may before December 31, 2023 be admitted, notwithstanding the requirement of such section that the service or labor be temporary, for a period of up to 3 years—

(i) to perform service or labor on Guam or in the Commonwealth pursuant to any agreement entered into by a prime contractor or subcontractor calling for services or labor required for performance of a cont[r]act or subcontract for construction, repairs, renovations, or facility services that is directly connected to, or associated with, the military realignment occurring on Guam and in the Commonwealth; or

(ii) to perform service or labor as a health care worker (such as a nurse, physician assistant, or allied health professional) at a facility that jointly serves members of the Armed Forces, dependents, and civilians on Guam or in the Commonwealth, subject to the education, training, licensing, and other requirements … except that this clause shall not be construed to include graduates of medical schools coming to Guam or the Commonwealth to perform service or labor as members of the medical profession.

The NDAA also eliminates the numerical limitation (or cap) that had previously been established for each fiscal year from 2018 through 2023, by which not more than 4,000 H-2B workers could be admitted annually to Guam or the CNMI pursuant to the exemption from the temporary need requirement that generally applies to H-2B nonimmigrants.