Strengthening Wage Protections for the Temporary and Permanent Employment of Certain Immigrants and Non-Immigrants in the United States: Delay of Effective and Transition Dates
On March 12, 2021, the Department of Labor (Department or DOL) published a final rule delaying the effective date of the January 14, 2021, rule entitled Strengthening Wage Protections for the Temporary and Permanent Employment of Certain Aliens in the United States (the rule or Final Rule), from March 15, 2021 until May 14, 2021. On March 22, 2021, the Department proposed to further delay the effective date of the rule by eighteen months from May 14, 2021 until November 14, 2022, along with corresponding proposed delays to the rule's transition dates. The Department proposed an additional delay to provide a sufficient amount of time to thoroughly consider the legal and policy issues raised in the rule, and offer the public, through the issuance of a Request for Information, an opportunity to provide information on the sources and methods for determining prevailing wage levels covering employment opportunities that United States (U.S.) employers seek to fill with foreign workers on a permanent or temporary basis through certain employment-based immigrant visas or through H-1B, H-1B1, or E-3 nonimmigrant visas. The Department also proposed the further delay to provide agency officials with a sufficient amount of time to compute and validate prevailing wage data covering specific occupations and geographic areas, complete and thoroughly test system modifications, train staff, and conduct public outreach to ensure an effective and orderly implementation of any revisions to the prevailing wage levels. The Department invited written comments from the public for 30 days, until April 21, 2021, on the proposed further delay and received 627 timely comments. The Department has reviewed the comments received in response to the proposal and will delay the effective date of the Final Rule for a period of 18 months, along with corresponding delays to the rule's transition dates.