H-1B Rule Favoring Higher Wage Earners Now Delayed

In one of the first signs that the Biden administration could roll back most (if not all) of the Trump administration’s H-1B legislation, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it would delay the implementation of a recent rule governing the H-1B lottery.

That Trump-era rule effectively disposed of the H-1B lottery, based on random selection, in favor of a system that prioritized high-wage applicants. By delaying the rule’s implementation, the Biden administration is signaling that this year’s H-1B lottery will proceed as planned this year.

“To give USCIS more time to develop, test, and implement the modifications to the H-1B registration system and selection process, DHS is delaying the effective date of this final rule from March 9, 2021, to Dec. 31, 2021,” read USCIS’s official statement on the matter. “The delay will also provide more time for USCIS to train staff and perform public outreach as well as give stakeholders time to adjust to the new rule.”

When it originally proposed the rule in November 2020, the Trump administration framed the lottery’s elimination as a way to ensure the H-1B is used as intended, to provide companies with highly specialized talent from overseas that was otherwise unavailable domestically: “If finalized as proposed, this new selection process would incentivize employers to offer higher wages or petition for positions requiring higher skills and higher-skilled workers instead of using the program to fill relatively lower-paid vacancies.”

Nor was that the first time that the Trump administration tried to tweak the H-1B lottery. Back in 2018, for instance, the Department of Homeland Security proposed a new system that would favor those with advanced degrees. Under that proposal, H-1B applicants with master’s degrees (or higher) would be processed through a 20,000-visa “pool,” with the remaining petitions directed into a 65,000-visa “general” pool. That was a reversal of the existing system, which placed all applicants in the “general” pool before sending remaining applicants with advanced degrees into the “master’s cap” pool.

These attempts to adjust the lottery system were part of the Trump administration’s broader efforts to fundamentally change—if not eliminate—the H-1B system altogether. Many of these efforts had a noticeable effect, with an elevated denial rate for H-1B petitions over the past four years. The big question is whether the Biden administration will roll back all of the Trump administration’s policies, or leave at least some in place while it tackles other issues. 

11 Responses to “H-1B Rule Favoring Higher Wage Earners Now Delayed”

  1. Jake_Leoney

    Changing from a random chance lottery to a system based upon salary, is a no-brainer. The lottery system was gamed, and mostly won, by Offshore Outsourcing companies. With the lottery, Silicon Valley companies only had a 1 in 4 chance of winning an H-1b visa for their OPT hires.

    But, hey, what do I care. Biden is an idiot who like many career politicians understand only one thing about the H-1b system. That thing, is that H-1b can be used to get big campaign contributions from Big-Tech. If we keep the lottery, then my company will only have a 1 in 4 chance of converting OPT workers to full-time h-1b workers, I am financially okay with that (not really, it is immoral, but hey that’s what the idiocy of Big Tech buys us).

    Big Tech is full of immoral twists, because they don’t rally show the hand they are holding, they resist inquiry and Congressional requests for information. Like the fact that Facebook can lie every day of the week, to the press and public, about not being able find local STEM workers.

    But we have an indictment of Facebook, full of information that was retrieved under the threat of a felony charge of obstruction (the same thing that put Martha Stewart in jail). And it is the Rosetta Stone for decoding Big Tech’s lies about this subject.

    When talking to Federal investigators, under threat of a felony obstruction charge.

    Facebook says it routinely gets hundreds of resumes for every STEM/IT position that it advertises on Facebook’s jobs website. Facebook went on to say, that it typically finds 30 or more qualified STEM/IT workers, out of those hundreds of resumes, that it would hire, but unfortunately, they only have one position open.

    Facebook then goes on to say (to Federal investigators) that job ads for the Green Card eligibility verification (AKA “PERM Process”) for foreign workers. Are only put in print, for 2 Sunday editions of the SF Chronicle. Facebook says it refused the FREE offer of the San Francisco Chronicle, to also place these PERM job ads on the Chronicle website. Facebook also said, that the jobs being done by the Foreign workers are in fact easier than the open hire STEM/IT jobs. But HR was forbidden to forward the resumes of the better qualified local Americans, (they wanted to hire, but could not because of well, having only one open job that Americans are permitted to apply for). To the hiring managers involved in the PERM process.

    Facebook then lied on Federal forms, saying that it could not find qualified local Americans to fill these PERM jobs.

    Facebook, literally, protected foreign workers from having to compete with better qualified local Americans, for their jobs.

    And the reason why, because foreign workers, waiting for a Green Card, will stay at their jobs (and keep their mouths shut) until the day they actually receive their Green Card, which takes decades right now.

    This kind of immoral, disenfranchisement (from the 13th amendment), is exactly what that the 100 million dollars Big Tech gave to the Biden campaign, was meant to pay for.

    And all those young fools who voted for Joe Biden are going to see their starting jobs sold to the highest bidder for the next 4 years.

    And that is the reason for the delay in the switch to from an IDIOTIC lottery, to something else (which will never happen, because Big Tech actually likes the lottery). Big Tech has big contracts for ordinary office work with these Offshore Outsourcing companies.y

    The only logical reason, is because the Biden administration intends to extort more money from Big Tech for Democratic campaigns. And you know what, Big Tech will happily pay that bribe.

    And Big Tech actually can find 30x more STEM/IT workers than it can ever hope to hire. The DOJ indictment is the Rosetta Stone for deciphering the real motivations and intentions of Big Tech. Because they couldn’t get minimum wage office workers to lie to Federal investigators.

  2. jake_leone

    Changing over to a salary based allocation of H-1b visas, is a no-brainer.

    The only possible reasons for delaying this are:

    – Tech companies have big contracts with Offshore Outsourcing companies.
    – The Biden administration wants to use this as a way to get more campaign money from Big Tech. (Big Tech gave the Biden campaign 100 million dollars)
    – Big Tech wants to squash startups, by limiting the reliability of H-1b program.

    The reality is, Offshore Outsourcing companies game the current, idiotic, lottery.

    We have seen this kind of idiocy before. Just read the DOJ indictment of Facebook, in regards to Green Card applications. Literally Facebook finds more than 30 qualified local STEM/IT candidates, per openly advertised STEM job. Yet Facebook lies to the public about this subject. Facebook couldn’t lie to Federal investigators, that indictment is the only document we can trust, and it shows us there is absolutely no shortage of STEM workers in the U.S. workforce.

    It also tells us, that there is a shortage of workers deprived of their 13th amendment right to leave the job at anytime. By giving preference and protection from local competition, to workers undergoing the Green Card process, Facebook (ILLEGALLY) solves this. Because workers waiting for Green Card, cannot leave their job, until they receive their Green Card (which can take decades).

    • The only reason this was delayed is because now the president is JOE BIDEN, not trump.

      This president will enforce his own agenda and not the previous agenda.

      Besides, we now have an INDIAN VP, who will ensure H1Bs are treated fairly.

      • jake_leone

        She’s the VP not the head of immigration, homeland security, or the head of the DOJ. Her role is that of Vice President.

        As for changing it just because the previous did a different way. That would presume that Biden is an idiot (which he may well be). The logic of choosing who gets an H-1b based upon salary, is undeniable. The illogic, the idiocy of using a random chance lottery to choose who gets and H-1b is undeniable, it is completely idiotic and backward.

        It only makes sense to use a lottery, if you want to make sure YOU DO NOT GET the best and brightest (which often are the more expensive and mobile).

  3. Only President in recent history who worked hard for US born legal Citizens was the great Trump. He was defeated to media and career politicians for their south Asian election strategies like defame and disrupt the government in some way before the election but not by the legal Citizens.
    Now with current President, over flood of illegals, criminals, visa holders all turn into quick green card and then as Citizens.

  4. This is part of the Slimy Joe quid-pro-quo for the Big Tech Billionaires White Boys Club (no diversity there). The worked to shutdown dissent during the campaign and now they get their serfs back.

    For those well paid IT workers who voted for Somnolent Joseph, I hope you enjoy asking, “Would you like fries with that?” on your next job.

  5. This shows Bidens’ complete disregard for American workers. Call and email your representatives and the white house. A flood of calls will help get attention. Make sure your voice is included.