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 U.S. Immigration Executive Order - High Skilled Workers - ajfdx

 U.S. Immigration Executive Order – High Skilled Workers

 U.S. Immigration Executive Order – High Skilled Workers

 

 

On November 20, 2014, President Obama issued a series of executive orders that addresses immigration problems that have plagued the United States for decades. There UK PR  has been a lot written on the deferred action on immigrants who are living in the United States illegally. However, an executive order was also issued to keep high skilled workers employed and working in the U.S.

Modernizing the Employment-Based Immigrant Visa System

The employment-based immigration system is plagued by extremely long waiting periods because of the low numerical limits of immigrant visas allocated to employment petitions. These limits were established nearly two and a half decades ago. As a result of the long waiting periods, hundreds of thousands of visas have gone unused as people have given up on immigrating to the United States or immigrated under a different visa. The executive order directed the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) to improve the immigrant visa process to minimize the loss of unused visas and to protect beneficiaries of approved employment petitions from losing their visas if they decide to change jobs or employers.

Extensions of Optional Practical Training

Optional Practical Training (OPT) allows foreign students to legally work for twelve months in an employment in their field of study upon completion of their program. In 2007, regulations were adopted to allow students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields to be eligible for an additional 17 months of OPT to work for a total of 29 months. This program allowed many STEM graduates to work in the United States instead of leaving with their new learned skills. The executive order directs the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the USCIS to expand on the number of degree programs where students are eligible for the 17 month extension of their OPT.

Promotion of Startups, Research, and Development in the U.S.

The United States has historically been a nation of technological development and top tier Universities. Investors and researchers are attracted to coming to the United States but the ambiguity of the law and the lack of applicable visa categories makes this difficult.

In order to promote startup companies, research, and development in the United States, the executive order directs the USCIS to clarify the meaning of “national interest waiver” and parole individuals who can prove a “significant public benefits” into the United States. The national interest waiver are for immigrants who do not have an employer sponsorship but have an advance degree or exceptional ability that will be of national interest to the United States. The number of immigrant visa allocated to this category are never fully utilized because of the lack of guidance as to standardize the meaning of national interest.

 

 

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