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New H-1B rule is "last gasp" of Trump effort to limit immigration

Media Contact

Rachel Rhodes

The Department of Labor (DOL) announced that it is issuing a 247-page rule to increase wage levels significantly for the H-1B nonimmigrant worker category and for certain employment-based green card applications. 


Stephen Yale-Loehr

Professor of Immigration Law

Stephen Yale-Loehr, professor of immigration law at Cornell Law School and co-author of a leading 21-volume immigration law series, says the new rule will require employers to pay significantly higher wages for H-1B and other foreign national employees.

Yale-Loehr says: 

“The rule changes the prevailing wage levels 1-4 from the 17, 34, 50 and 67th percentiles to the 45, 62, 78 and 90th percentiles of surveyed wages from the DOL’s Bureau of Labor Statistics. The result: employers will have to pay significantly higher wages for H-1B and other foreign national employees.

“The DOL issued a similar interim rule in October. Several federal courts struck down that rule. Nevertheless, after making only minor changes, the DOL is issuing this new final rule. DOL justifies the new rule as a way to help U.S. workers, but it will have the opposite impact. Companies may decide to offshore jobs overseas, hurting U.S. workers.

“This rule is the last gasp of the Trump administration to restrict legal immigration. I am confident that courts will strike down this new rule, just as they did the prior rule.”

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