The Biden Administration through White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain, issued a memorandum on January 20th that specifically instructs Agencies that a “Regulatory Freeze Pending Review” is effective as of noon on January 20, 2021 in order to ensure that the President’s appointees or designees have the opportunity to review any new or pending rules.
Among other things, the Memo further states, at the direction of the President, Agencies take the following steps:
1. Propose or issue no rule in any manner — including by sending a rule to the Office of the Federal Register (the “OFR”) — until a department or agency head appointed or designated by the President after noon on January 20, 2021, reviews and approves the rule.
2. With respect to rules that have been sent to the OFR but not published in the Federal Register, immediately withdraw them from the OFR for review and approval
3. With respect to rules that have been published in the Federal Register, or rules that have been issued in any manner, but have not taken effect, consider postponing the rules’ effective dates for 60 days from the date of this memorandum
According to the American Immigration Lawyers Association, as a result of this Memo, the modified version of the Strengthening the H-1B Nonimmigrant Visa Classification Program Final Rule sent to the Federal Register on January 15, but not yet published, will be withdrawn.
In addition, the H-1B Wage Selection Final Rule, may upon further agency action be postponed until March 21, 2021.
The clarifying filing requirements for LCAs by secondary employers and the H-1B program obligations for common-law employers published by the Department of Labor on January 15, 2021, rely on the finalization of the DHS Rule, and it is likely that they will be withdrawn by DOL as well.
We will continue to monitor any agency action and provide you with an update through iMail©