USCIS recently announced new measures to protect American jobs and comply with initiatives coming from the Trump Administration. The announcement serves as the first step for a new direction focused on greater oversight of both H-1B employees and employers. Specifically, for employers, worksite visits will now become more strenuous for those companies identified by USICIS as being at risk of fraud or abuse.
Over a year ago, President Trump’s executive order, Buy American Hire American: Put Americans First, sparked a series of policy announcements from USCIS, DHS, and other government organizations. Since the beginning of the new wave of immigration policy from the Trump White House in 2017, worksite compliance visits have increased in frequency. In the announcement, USCIS revealed a new targeted approach for site visits, focusing on instances in which:
- USCIS cannot validate the employer’s basic business information through commercially available data;
- H-1B-dependent employers (those who have a high ratio of H-1B workers as compared to U.S. workers, as defined by statute);
- Employers petitioning for H-1B workers who work off-site at another company or organization’s location.
Therefore, companies that fall within these categories should expect greater scrutiny from USCIS officers. Through the direction of Trump administration officials, USCIS plans to insure companies continue to prioritize employing American workers before outsourcing labor to foreign nationals. However, U.S. companies struggle to find American employees with enough human capital to be competitive and must attract highly skilled workers from abroad. Although foreign national highly skilled workers are an essential element to the intellectual labor force in the United States and contribute billions of dollars to the U.S. economy, many Americans continue to believe that H-1B workers decrease opportunity for American workers. Thus, the new initiative from USCIS continues to disadvantage foreign workers in the name of “protecting American workers.”