Trump Administration Undecided on Future of Spouses of H-1B Visa-Holders

July 05, 2018

Presently Spouses of H-1B visa holders can work.  There is an ambiguity on the working status of spouses of H-1B visa holders still persists. The Trump Administration is undecided regarding their future. 

A study claimed that in case of cancellation of H-4 visa; the impact on the US economy will be negative. For the moment, a research claims that in case the spouses of H-1B visa holders do not get jobs under H4 visa, or other work visa, it will make a serious impact on organizations, which are dependent on H-1B visa holders. There is no decision on Work Status of H-1B Visa Holder’s Spouse. President Trump intends to disallow spouses of H-1B visa holders, from doing any work in the US. There is a demand that only H-1B visa holders should work, and there must be a denial to their spouses in work.

Trump Administration Undecided on Future of Spouses of H-1B Visa-Holders

The past record

The government of President Obama had introduced a visa rule in 2015, permitting the spouses of H-1B visa holders to perform work in the country under H-4 visa.

Homeland Security Department had to notify concerning the fresh change, which clarified the situation to the visa holders. There was an expectation regarding issuing a Notice on Proposed Rule Making in June. It was the second instance when the Department could not meet the deadline regarding announcing this notification. A spokesman declined to provide any updates this time.

The United States District Court of Columbia has a petition of Save Jobs USA, which is in opposition to the decision of President Trump’s regarding terminating H-4 visas. It has the provision of allowing the spouses of visa holders to work in USA, officially and legally.

In case of no official response spouses of these visa holders are in the position to presently work, but their future remains uncertain.

Terminating H-4 Visa to Affect US Firms Negatively

Christopher JL Cunningham, belonging to the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, and Pooja B V Kumar, from the Kemmy Business School at the University of Limerick, is a part of the research in this regard. They find that in case the Government opts for termination of H-4 visa for spouses of H-1B visa holders, it can impact the bottom-line of US firms, dependent on foreign professionals, negatively.  In the event of termination of H-4 visa, close to 100,000 workers are likely to lose jobs directly or indirectly.

The study observed that when the Policy changes happen in the absence of accurate and complete information, it does not assist policy makers, to understand the magnitude of the likely consequences. Because of cancellation of spouse-visa, such  visa holders may not work in their best possible manner. Furthermore, this might cause serious imbalance, between work and home environment.

Finally the person can ignore the H-1B visa, and return to the native country. All such migrants, who are unsuccessful, can cost around $250,000 to $1 million, to the economy in US. There will be other updates in this regard.

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