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COVID-19: USCIS issues temporary final rule modifying H-2B requirements

  1. Date Announced

    May 14, 2020

    COVID-19: USCIS issues a temporary final rule allowing H-2B employees already in valid status in the U.S. on or after March 1, 2020, whose work is essential to the U.S. food supply chain, to begin working upon USCIS' receipt of their H-2B petitions accompanied by an approved temporary labor certification. This change is applicable to petitions filed March 1, 2020 to September 11, 2020. It also allows such essential H-2B workers to extend their H-2B period of stay with the same or a new employer beyond the 3-year limitation, without first requiring them to remain outside of the United States for an uninterrupted period of 3 months. The rule, signed by Chad Mizelle, Senior Official Performing the Duties of the General Counsel, on behalf of Acting Secretary Wolf, is effective May 14, 2020 to May 15, 2023.

    [ID #599]

    View Policy Document
  2. Effective Date of Change

    May 14, 2020
  3. Subsequent Action

    USCIS released its H-2B cap count for FY2021, stating that it has received 18,512 beneficiaries toward the 33,000 cap for the first half of FY2021, with 16,791 approved and 1,721 pending.

    Cap Count for H-2B Nonimmigrants
Status: Final/Actual
Type of Action: Rule
Agencies Affected: USCIS DOL

Prior Policies

  • 8 CFR section 214.2(h)(23) provides the requirements for petitioning for H-2B status.

    8 CFR 214.2

Subsequent Action

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