How DACA Recipients Could Gain an H1B Visa with Biden's New Policy?

How DACA Recipients Could Gain an H1B Visa with Biden’s New Policy?

Biden’s New Policy for DACA Recipients offers a significant opportunity for Dreamers to secure H1B visas. Have you ever wondered how these new policies could impact your chances of gaining legal employment in the U.S.? This article breaks down the latest modifications and how they might help you.

With simpler processes and more opportunities, now is the time to understand and take advantage of Biden’s immigration policies for DACA recipients. Learn how these changes can open doors for you and help you achieve your goals in the United States.

Overview of Biden’s New Immigration Policies

Biden’s New Policy for DACA Recipients introduces several changes to help Dreamers. These changes aim to simplify the immigration procedure, making it easier and more accessible for DACA recipients and their families. The new policy also provides more pathways to secure H1B visas.

Work visas, such as the H-1B, will continue to have the same fundamental standards regardless of the executive order. However, applications from people who have graduated from U.S. colleges and universities, including Dreamers and DACA participants, will get more attention. Specific rules and regulations established in reaction to the executive order will determine the practical implementation of this prioritizing, which has yet to be defined. Nevertheless, adjustments to the selection procedure may be necessary for implementation, with an emphasis on candidates with degrees from schools in the United States.

Exemptions from Past Illegal Presence: The administration’s goal is to streamline the waiver procedure and give more assurance to individuals who may be inadmissible owing to previous unlawful presence in the United States. In order to speed up the visa application process, consular officials may use their discretion to suggest waivers, which the Department of Homeland Security may approve. It suggests a faster and more accommodating process for waivers for this particular set of applicants. 

Benefits of the New Policy for DACA Recipients

Biden’s New Policy for DACA Recipients has several benefits. One significant advantage is the simplified visa application process, which makes it easier for DACA recipients to apply for and obtain H1B visas.

The expanded availability of employment-based visas is an additional advantage. DACA recipients can find employment that matches their qualifications and skill set with more excellent options. Better career chances and stability may result from it.

Here are the further discussion about the benefits of the new policy for DACA recipients:

Increased Access to H-1B Visas:

  • The policy includes guidance for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to recognize work authorization for DACA recipients when applying for H-1B visas.
  • DACA recipients can use their work authorization and education credentials to qualify for H-1B visas.

Improved Employment Opportunities

  • Access to Specialty Occupations: The policy enables DACA recipients to qualify for H-1B visas designated for specialty occupations requiring specialized knowledge.
  • Higher Earning Potential: Gaining an H-1B visa can lead to higher-paying jobs in technology, engineering, medicine, and finance.

Legal Stability

  • Work Authorization Continuity: DACA recipients can transition from temporary work permits to a more stable H-1B visa status.
  • Reduced Deportation Risk: Holding an H-1B visa offers more protection against deportation compared to DACA status.

Pathway to Permanent Residency

  • Green Card Eligibility: H-1B status can be a stepping stone toward applying for employment-based green cards (permanent residency).
  • Long-term Residency Plans: This pathway provides a more straightforward route for DACA recipients to plan for their long-term future in the U.S.

Educational Advantages

  • Recognition of U.S. Education Credentials: DACA recipients with degrees in the U.S. can leverage their qualifications to meet H-1B requirements.
  • Enhanced Professional Development: Access to H-1B visas allows recipients to pursue advanced career opportunities and further education within their field.

Employer Sponsorship

  • Job Security: Employers willing to sponsor DACA recipients for H-1B visas provide a measure of job security and long-term employment prospects.
  • Professional Growth: Sponsorship often involves career development opportunities, mentoring, and professional training.

Increased Confidence and Well-being

  • Reduced Anxiety: The new policy alleviates some of the uncertainties and anxieties associated with the temporary nature of DACA status.
  • Improved Quality of Life: With better job prospects and legal stability, DACA recipients can focus on their personal and professional growth.

Economic Contributions

  • Boost to U.S. Economy: By facilitating the employment of highly skilled individuals, the policy helps fill critical job vacancies and contributes to the U.S. economy.
  • Innovation and Productivity: DACA recipients, often highly educated and skilled, can drive innovation and productivity in various industries.

Cap Exemptions:

  • The policy does not change the annual cap on H-1B visas (65,000 regular caps and 20,000 additional for those with a U.S. master’s degree or higher).
  • However, it facilitates the application process for DACA recipients, making it more likely that they will secure an H-1B visa within the existing cap.

Adjustment of Status:

  • The policy could help DACA recipients adjust their status to permanent residency if they meet the eligibility criteria.
  • Gaining H-1B status may make it easier for them to apply for employment-based green cards.

Eligibility for Waivers for Unlawful Presence:

Previously, people with Unlawful presence could not qualify for a work-based visa like the H1B unless they had less than six months of unlawful presence. With the new law, there is a discussion of allowing the Department of State to permit waivers for DACA applicants. It may be possible to utilize Advanced Parole requests or to accept a different waiver application for these applicants. 

Community and Family Stability

  • Support for Families: Stable employment and legal status allow DACA recipients to support their families better financially and emotionally.
  • Community Engagement: With increased stability, recipients can become more active and engaged in their local communities.

Broader Social Impact

  • Positive Societal Integration: The policy promotes the integration of DACA recipients into American society by providing opportunities for meaningful employment and long-term residency.
  • Role Models for Future Generations: Successful transitions to H-1B status can inspire other DACA recipients and immigrants, showing a viable path to stability and success.

The new policy provides various benefits that enhance DACA recipients’ personal and professional lives, contributing to their stability, economic prosperity, and integration into U.S. society.

Disadvantages of Biden’s New Policy 

Although the new policy has increased the possibility for DACA recipients, it still has disadvantages.

Here are some of them:

Annual Cap Limitations:

  • H-1B Visa Cap: The fixed annual cap of 65,000 visas (plus 20,000 for advanced degree holders) means that many applicants, including DACA recipients, may not receive a visa due to the lottery system.
  • Time to file limitation: The H-1B visa is eligible for registration in the lottery system in March each year. If applicants are selected in the lottery, they have until June 30 to file. If approved, the applicant can start on Oct. 1 of that year. 

Job Sponsorship Requirement:

  • Employer Dependency: DACA recipients must secure job offers from U.S. employers willing to sponsor their H-1B visas, which can be challenging in a competitive job market.
  • Vulnerability to Job Loss: H-1B holders risk losing their visa status if they lose their job and cannot quickly find another sponsoring employer.

Complex and Costly Application Process:

  • Bureaucratic Hurdles: The H-1B application process is lengthy and requires extensive documentation, legal assistance, and approval from various immigration authorities.
  • High Costs: Legal and application fees are significant financial costs that can burden applicants and employers.

Uncertain Pathway to Permanent Residency:

  • Lengthy Process: While H-1B status can lead to a green card, the process can take many years due to backlogs and priority date delays.
  • Employer Dependence: Transitioning from H-1B to green card status requires continued sponsorship by the employer, which can be uncertain.

Occupational and Field Restrictions:

  • Speciality Occupation Requirement: H-1B visas are limited to specialty occupations, excluding DACA recipients in non-specialty fields from benefiting from the policy.
  • Industry Limitations: Certain career paths and industries must qualify for H-1B sponsorship, limiting opportunities for some DACA recipients.
  • There is discussion, however, that the government could expand the definition of “high-skilled jobs or “specialty occupations” to accommodate more occupations.

Geographic and Employment Mobility:

  • Location Constraints: H-1B visas are tied to specific employers and locations, restricting the geographic mobility of recipients.
  • Relocation Challenges: Changing employers or moving to a different state requires additional legal processes and approvals, complicating mobility.

Temporary Visa Validity and Renewal Issues:

  • Temporary Status: H-1B visas are valid for up to six years (initially three years, with a possible three-year extension), leading to uncertainty about long-term status.
  • Renewal Complications: The renewal process can be cumbersome and is subject to changing immigration policies.

Dependents’ Limitations:

  • Limited Work Authorization for Dependents: Spouses and children (H-4 visa holders) of H-1B visa holders have limited work authorization, impacting the family’s financial stability.
  • Status Dependence: The legal status of dependents is tied to the H-1B holder, making them vulnerable if the primary visa holder’s status changes.

Political and Policy Uncertainty:

  • Policy Reversals: Immigration policies can change under different administrations, creating instability and uncertainty for DACA recipients who rely on current guidelines.
  • Legal Challenges: The policy could face legal and political challenges that might alter or revoke its benefits.

Social and Economic Inequities:

  • Barriers for Marginalized Groups: The policy may need to address challenges marginalized DACA recipients face, such as limited access to higher education or professional networks.
  • Inequity in Access: DACA recipients from disadvantaged backgrounds may encounter more obstacles in securing H-1B sponsorship and navigating the complex visa process.

Having to Leave the U.S. for Processing:

Requiring DACA applicants and those who attended U.S. universities to go through the Consular Process to receive the benefit requires applicants to accept a significant amount of risk in the application process, as they could potentially be stuck outside the United States if the case or any required waiver is not approved.  

Just as many would-be applicants were afraid to file for DACA initially because they put themselves at risk by exposing themselves and their personal information to the U.S. government, many qualified applicants will likely choose to stay in the U.S. at a lesser-paid job because they fear what could happen at a U.S. embassy.  

A workaround would be for DACA recipients to apply for Advanced Parole before they travel, as long as their time outside the U.S. does not exceed the amount of time they were authorized to be outside the U.S. on their Advanced Parole document.

Step-by-Step Guide to Applying for an H1B Visa Under the New Policy

Biden’s new policy has simplified getting an H1B visa for DACA recipients. Here is a clear, step-by-step guide to help Dreamers through the process.

Find a Job Offer

Identify Potential Employers:

  • Research and connect with U.S. employers who are willing to sponsor H1B visas.
  • Utilize job boards, networking events, and professional organizations.

Ensure Job Qualifications:

  • Confirm that the job requires specialized knowledge and a bachelor’s degree or higher.
  • Verify that your qualifications comply with the position’s criteria.

File a Labor Condition Application (LCA)

Employer’s Responsibility:

  • Employers must file an LCA with the Department of Labor (DOL).
  • The LCA ensures that your employment will not negatively affect U.S. workers and meets wage standards.

Details Required in the LCA:

  • Job title and duties.
  • Location of employment.
  • Prevailing wage and the actual wage paid to the H1B worker.

Form I-129 Filing

Employer’s Role:

  • After the LCA is approved, your employer will file Form I-129, Petition for a With U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a nonimmigrant worker.
  • The petition must include evidence of the job offer and your qualifications.

Supporting Documentation:

  • Copy of the approved LCA.
  • Detailed job description.
  • Proof of your education (diplomas, transcripts).
  • Evidence of any required licenses or certifications.

Visa Application

USCIS Approval:

  • Once USCIS approves Form I-129, a notice of approval (Form I-797) will be sent to you.

Applying at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy:

  • With the Notice of Approval, apply for the H1B visa at a U.S. consulate or embassy in your home country.
  • Schedule an interview and gather necessary documents (passport, Form DS-160, photographs, Form I-797, job offer letter).

Prepare for the Visa Interview:

  • Prepare to talk about your position, employer, and credentials.
  • Bring all required documents to the interview.

Entering the United States

Upon Visa Approval:

  • If your visa is approved, you can enter the U.S. and begin employment under H1B status after Oct. 1 of that year.
  • Ensure you follow the guidelines on your visa., including employment conditions and duration of stay.

Post-Arrival Steps

Maintaining H1B Status:

  • Comply with all visa regulations, including timely renewals and updates to your employment status.
  • Maintain a valid job with your sponsoring employer.

Pathway to Permanent Residency:

  • Consider options for adjusting your status to permanent residency (i.e., through PERM) if you are eligible.
  • Discuss applying for an employment-based green card with an immigration lawyer and your employer.

This guide provides a structured approach for DACA recipients to apply for an H1B visa under Biden’s new policy. By following these steps and utilizing available resources, dreamers can navigate the process more confidently and successfully.

Conclusion

Biden’s New Policy for DACA Recipients offers significant opportunities for Dreamers to secure H1B visas by simplifying the visa application process and increasing the availability of employment-based visas. 

The new policy provides a clear path to legal employment. These changes reflect the administration’s commitment to supporting Dreamers and their families.

Contact Immigration Lawyers USA now for further information from Immigration Attorney Alicia Morgan. Be ready to take advantage of the opportunities provided by Biden’s New Policy for DACA Recipients.

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