REQUEST FOR EVIDENCE
For H-1B visa petitioners, Trump=more paperwork. Ana Campoy
January 11, 2018
The H-1B visa, which allows American companies to hire skilled foreign workers, from engineers to fashion models, is under siege.Last year, Trump’s “Buy American and Hire American” executive order suggested that H-1Bs should be more difficult to get. Congress and the Trump administration have been mulling ways to limit the visa’s availability to Indian workers. But obtaining an H-1B visa has already quietly become more cumbersome since Donald Trump became president, not through any change in the law, but through bureaucracy.
One indicator of that is a spike in “requests for evidence,” which are notices the US Citizen and Immigration Services department sends to H-1B applicants requesting more information. Such requests, known as RFEs, are a routine part of the visa process. Their purpose is to ensure that the agency (USCIS) only grants visas to people who meet the criteria. But lawyers who represent H-1B applicants say they are now getting unwarranted requests, and in bigger numbers, than in the past.
The data back their claims, at least in terms of volume. From last January to November, the office issued around 40% more RFEs than in all of 2016, and 65% more than in all of 2015, USCIS data shows.
It’s almost as if it matters whose side the President is on.[Comment at Unz.com]