Recently, on May 21, 2021, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the Department of Labor (DOL) announced that a temporary final rule will be issued on May 25, 2021, to grab an additional 22,000 H-2B visas for certain foreign workers and businesses. The H-2B Visa is for seasonal, non-agriculture temporary foreign workers with a valid job offer from a US employer.
The USCIS announced that, out of the total, 16,000 H-2B Visas will be reserved for returning workers who were granted H-2B Visas in the last 3 years, from 2018 to 2020. The remaining 6,000 visas will be issued for foreign nationals from Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador.
Employers may request these additional H-2B Visas for workers until September 15, 2021. If employers are hiring from the above-mentioned 3 countries, then they must request an H-2B Visa by July 8, 2021.
Which Employers Are Eligible for Additional H-2B Visas?
To be eligible for these additional H-2B Visas, employers must demonstrate how they will face irreparable harm without hiring all the requested H-2B workers in their petition. A labor market test will be conducted if the certified start date of the H-2B Visa petition is 45 days or more before May 25, 2021.