Biden administration removes Trump-era H-1B rule vacated by court

The Trump administration had issued an order in October seeking to “narrow” the definition of speciality occupation to ensure US companies could use the visa programme to make “real offers” to “real employees” and not to hire foreigners as “low-cost replacement” for qualified Americans

By Yashwant Raj*

US President Joe Biden drives a F150 electric truck at the Ford Dearborn Development Center in Dearborn, Michigan. (AFP)

The Biden administration on Tuesday announced that it has removed a Trump-era rule that had sought to narrow the definition of “speciality” for qualifying for H-1B non-immigration short-term work visas in the country – doing away with one more of former president Donald Trump’s restrictive changes to the visa programme.

The Trump administration had issued an order last October seeking to “narrow” the definition of speciality occupation to ensure US companies could use the visa programme to make “real offers” to “real employees” and not to hire foreigners as “low-cost replacement” for qualified Americans.

A bachelor’s degree wasn’t sufficient under that rule. Instead, a bachelor’s degree in a specific field related to the job was required.

The rule couldn’t be implemented, though, as it was a vacated by a court. The department of homeland security has now removed it altogether from the Code of Federal Rules.

“This is one of Trump’s three big midnight regulations to remake (some would say destroy) the H-1B system,” Doug Rand, an immigration official from the Obama administration, had tweeted back in October. He added, separately, “The Biden administration continues to take a thoughtful approach to Trump-era immigration regulations, an unprecedented number of which were jammed through at the last moment. The lawsuits continue to pile up, and we may see other Trump-era H-1B rules evaporate as well.”

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About Cholo Brooks 14633 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.

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