AILA Public Statements, Press Releases, Advocacy & Media

AILA and Members of AILA’s Board of Governors File Complaint to Block H-1B Lottery Rule

5/17/21 AILA Doc. No. 21051736. Business Immigration, H-1B & H-1B1 Specialty Occupation

PRESS CONTACTS:
Belle Woods, AILA, 202-507-7675, bwoods@aila.org
George Tzamaras, AILA, 202-507-7649, gtzamaras@aila.org
Jalisa McGaha, Siskind Susser PC, 901-682-6455, jmcgaha@visalaw.com

WASHINGTON D.C. –– Today, five nonprofit organizations and businesses, represented by the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), Jeff Joseph of Joseph and Hall PC, Charles Kuck of Kuck Baxter Immigration LLC, and Greg Siskind of Siskind Susser PC, sued to enjoin the final rule published January 8, 2021 entitled Modification of Registration Requirement for Petitioners Seeking To File Cap-Subject H-1B Petitions, which is also known as the H-1B lottery rule.

Jesse Bless, AILA’s Director of Federal Litigation stated, "This rule has been unlawful since its inception under the Trump administration and promulgation under former DHS official Chad Wolf. District courts have repeatedly and unanimously ruled that Mr. Wolf lacked the authority to change immigration policy. Even if Mr. Wolf could have promulgated the H-1B rule, it’s substantively unlawful because it directly contravenes U.S. immigration law. Choosing highly-skilled workers solely on the basis of wages arbitrarily aligns a worker’s pay with value, something wrong and unAmerican."

Jeff Joseph, Senior Partner of Joseph and Hall, PC, stated, "Dealing with the Department of Labor often feels like The Hunger Games. Everyone is required to play the game, but no one knows the rules and the rules are constantly changing. This is not a game and under this misguided rule, the odds are definitely in favor of the largest and wealthiest of businesses. Smaller and rural businesses are left out of the lottery for reasons that are arbitrary, illegal and not rationally related to the economy."

Charles Kuck, managing partner of Kuck Baxter Immigration LLC said, "A 'lottery' that is more of an auction for skilled work visas is both illegal under federal law and unjust by any standard, as it places individuals who live in more expensive locales against those equally necessary and skilled workers who live in rural and less expensive areas. Equitable distribution of H-1B visas is necessary to maintain our country’s global competitiveness."

Greg Siskind, founding partner of Siskind Susser PC noted, "The H-1B statute was intended to make sure that US workers are not being underpaid, not to create a system where nonprofit organizations are never able to recruit vital talent because they can’t compete with the for-profit sector, nor was it intended to kneecap universities and hospitals by making it extremely difficult for graduating students and medical residents to qualify for H-1B visas. This rule may have sounded good to the people who came up with the idea, but it will cause disastrous collateral damage."