Proposed Legislative Act Would Greatly Affect L-1 Visa Requirements

Congresswoman Rosa L. DeLauro (R-CT) plans to soon introduce an act that, if enacted, will greatly affect legislation regarding the L-1 “intra-company transferee” Visa. DeLauro’s “L-1 Non-Immigration Reform Act” would implement major restrictions on the visa. Currently, the L-1 Visa enables multinational corporations to bring foreign employees from overseas subsidiaries to the U.S. to work as intra-company transferees. These employees must have worked for the host company for one out of the last three years and the employees’ education must qualify them to work in the proposed positions. The L-1 Visa is applicable for one year (with the option of renewal for up to five years).

DeLauro’s proposed bill would change legislation related to the visa in the following ways:

1. A cap would be placed, allowing only 35,000 L-1 Visas to be issued per year.

2. Blanket petitions to hire L-1 Visa employees would be banned.

3. Firms that have fired U.S. workers within the previous six months would be banned from applying for L-1 Visas for a period of six months.

4. A prevailing wage requirement would be added to L-1 requirements, to ensure that U.S. workers would not be displaced by L-1 employees receiving lower wages.

5. L-1 employees would be required to have been working full-time for the petitioning company for three continuous years prior to entering the U.S.

6. The Department of Labor would be given the power to conduct ongoing surveys of employer compliance to these new regulations.

7. The Secretary of Labor would be given the authority to impose administrative limitations on employers not complying with L-1 Visa regulations.

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