USCIS Actions to Support Adjustment of Status Applicants Who are in H-1B Status in the United States
- Congress sets the annual immigrant visa limits. Historically, demand for these visas, regardless of country of origin, is much higher than the annual limits can accommodate.
- Although we issued an unprecedented number of employment based green cards in fiscal years 2022 and 2023, the employment-based numerical limits for FY 2024 and beyond are not expected to be as high as in previous years because fewer family-based immigrant visas will go unused, resulting in less carryover to the employment-based allocations.
We have taken several actions to help those who will be waiting for an “immediately available” immigrant visa number for a long time, including:
- Allowing certain spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants to apply for employment authorization, if the H-1B nonimmigrant is the beneficiary of an approved Form I-140;
- Issuing two recent policies to help address those who are “aging-out.” USCIS plans to expand these efforts in an upcoming proposed Adjustment of Status regulation;
- Publishing clear guidance on job mobility, clarifying that H-1B nonimmigrants may be able to remain in the country for up to 60 days after their H-1B employment ends, and that they can search for new employment while on a B-1/B-2 visa;
- Issuing guidance on the eligibility criteria for Compelling Circumstances EADs;
- Announcing process enhancements for deferred action requests by workers, including H-1B workers, to support labor and employment agency investigations;
- Working to publish a notice of proposed rulemaking, which will propose various changes to modernize H-1B requirements and oversight; and
- Publishing information on the full range of options for STEM professionals and entrepreneurs to work in the United States.
We will keep working within our legal authority to provide as much flexibility, predictability, and dignity as possible for all those waiting for their chance to become a lawful permanent resident and ultimately a U.S. citizen.