UNITED STATES – DHS plans sweeping changes to high-skilled immigration programs in 2018

he DHS regulatory agenda seeks to roll back a number of remaining Obama-era immigration regulations and further tighten non-immigrant categories, in particular H-4, H-1B and F-1 student OPT.

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The Department of Homeland Security's semi-annual regulatory agenda indicates the Trump administration will pursue plans to terminate work authorization for spouses of H-1B holders, overhaul the H-1B annual allotment process, revise H-1B eligibility and wage protections, and update the F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT) program. 

Notably, DHS signaled that the changes to the H-1B and F-1 OPT programs will be accomplished through notice and comment rulemaking in the federal register. That means the policy changes will not become effective immediately and companies and other affected parties will have the opportunity to submit comments to the government. 

Click here for the key points of the department's plan, including the termination of H-4 work authorization and the reorganization of the H-1B lottery.

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