Key Points
  • Two lawsuits were filed on October 19, 2020 in federal court against the DHS and DOL
  • The lawsuits seek to stop enforcement of recent regulations affecting eligibility and wage requirements for H-1B, H-1B1, and E-3 programs
  • The DOL’s wage regulation rule took effect on October 8, 2020
  • The DHS rule on H-1B eligibility requirements is scheduled to take effect on December 7, 2020
  • Both rules will remain in effect unless an injunction is issued
Overview

Universities, business organizations, and immigration groups in the United States have filed lawsuits against the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Labor (DOL) challenging recent regulations that affect eligibility and wage requirements for PERM certification and H-1B, H-1B1, and E-3 programs.

Background

The Department of Homeland Security and Labor Department published new rules on October 8, 2020 affecting H-1B eligibility requirements and wage regulations, respectively. The Labor Department’s rule was immediately effective, while the DHS’ rule will take effect on December 7, 2020, which is 60 days from its publication. The two lawsuits follow a separate lawsuit filed on October 16, 2020 in a New Jersey federal court. The lawsuit, which was filed by a group of computer-service and IT companies, seeks to end enforcement of the Labor Department’s regulation.

What is the Issue?  

On October 19, 2020, the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Retail Federation, Stanford University, Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration, along with other universities and business organizations, filed a lawsuit in a federal California court against DHS and the Labor Department. They seek to stop the Trump Administration from enforcing new H-1B eligibility regulations implemented by the Department of Homeland Security and wage regulations implemented by the Labor Department.

The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), along with Purdue University, the University of Michigan, the Information Technology Industry Council, and other business groups and universities, filed a separate lawsuit on October 19, 2020 in a Washington, DC federal court. They seek to bar the Trump Administration from enforcing the Labor Department’s new wage regulations.

Looking Ahead

Additional litigation is expected against the DOL and DHS rules. Plaintiffs in the lawsuits are seeking injunctions to prevent the government from enforcing the rules while litigation is ongoing. The rules will remain effective unless an injunction is issued.


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