In a bid to avert a looming government shutdown, President Joe Biden has recently signed a short-term spending bill, ensuring the uninterrupted operation of the US federal government until November 17, 2023.
Nevertheless, the spectre of a future shutdown still casts a shadow, with Congress setting the new shutdown deadline for November 17.
A shutdown would suspend certain immigration-related functions at the Department of Labor (DOL), which could impact the ability of H-1B workers to obtain and extend their visas.
Urgent Advisory for H-1B Visa Holders
Immigration attorneys are sounding the alarm, particularly for H-1B visa holders, urging them to take immediate action. This includes the prompt submission of H-1B cap second lottery selection applications by the end of October, as well as addressing other immigration-related filings, such as H-1B extensions.
Tips for H-1B Visa Holders
File applications for H-1B cap second lottery selections by the end of October. This will ensure that your application is processed before the November 17 deadline.
Accept new job offers as soon as possible. This will allow your new employer time to file and obtain approval for the Labour Condition Application (LCA) before November 17.
If your current H-1B visa is expiring after mid-May 2024, consider filing the LCA earlier. This will help manage risk in case of a government shutdown.
Tips for US Employers Sponsoring H-1B Employees
File LCAs for expirations through mid-May 2024 as soon as possible. This will help ensure that your employee’s H-1B visa is extended before the expiration date.
If your H-1B employee’s spouse has a dependent visa with work authorization, consider filing the LCA for their H-1B extension earlier than six months before the expiration date. This will help mitigate concerns about a gap in their spouse’s work in case of a government shutdown.
Ensuring Smooth Immigration Processes
With the temporary assurance of US government funding, individuals and employers must act expediently to safeguard smooth immigration procedures and mitigate potential disruptions arising from future government shutdowns. Vigilance is key, and early action is strongly advised for those in the H-1B visa community.