S386 to Remove Green Card Country Limit

S386 Act Green card country limit removal has good chance of passing with Chuck grassley. H1B, L workers from India, China will gain. Same as House HR1044.

Written by Am22tech
  By Am22tech      Updated  6 Jan, 20


Dec 23, 2019 S386 news: Senator Durbin has agreed with Mike Lee on S386 by adding clauses to safeguard ROW of green cards along with additional H1B visa restrictions on H1B dependent employers.

Mike Lee will try and push S386 for Unanimous content voting sometime in Jan 2020 now.

Fairness for High Skilled Workers Act S.386 is pushing for Green Card country limit removal through Senate and is similar to HR 1044 bill in house. 

Durbin was initially trying to push his own RELIEF act.

House had passed HR1044 on June 2019 to remove the green card country limits but the Senate’s version is still blocked by Rand Paul at this time.

If S386 senate bill is passed, the 7% cap for employment-based Green cards will be completely removed to help speed up the decades long wait for high skilled workers primarily for Indian and Chinese H1B workers.

It will also increase the family based immigration’s per-country cap from current 7% year to 15%.

H1B requirements – Grassley S386 Amendment Deal

  • Publish H1B LCA online on internet – LCA are available online currently as well. Not sure how it is a new requirement.
  • H1B Employer to provide how they calculated LCA prevailing wage.
  • Employer has to certify they are not favoring H1B over American workers – This also exists currently as a law.
  • DOL can ask for H1B employee W2 to validate wages – Currently exists as law too.
  • Allow DOL to charge fees for H1B LCAs – This is new requirement.
  • Foreign workers cannot use B1/B2 to work in US – This is an existing law too.
  • Protect whistle blowers against H1B employer retaliation – This is an existing law.

The lobbying is the only way forward keeping in mind the anti-immigrant perception of US mass that Trump is trying to change by talking about Merit based immigration.

HR 1044 vs S-386 Bill

HR 1044 is a green card country limit removal bill was introduced by Democrats in House and S386 is in Senate.

The two bill have to run separately in their own House and Senate.

House 1044 bill is currently supported by 300+ co-sponsors and has good chances of approval there.

If both HR 1044 and S386 are passed separately, then the differences between the House and Senate S386 bill will need to be reconciled in a meeting between members of the House and members of the Senate.

If HR 1044 is passed in House and Senate’s version is still pending, HR1044 will need to be voted and passed in Senate.

Similarly, if S386 is passed first and HR1044 is pending at that time, the S-386 will need to be passed in House.

The final step is president Trump’s signature to make it a law.

If neither bill get a vote in both Chambers, the bill dies in 24 months.

S386 Green Card Limits for Initial Years

There are reservations for employment-based visas from financial year 2020 to FY 2022 if the bill is passed to safeguard non-backlogged country queues.

The percentage of EB-2 (workers with advanced degrees or exceptional ability) and EB-3 (skilled and other workers) Green cards for individuals not from the two countries (which is practically India and China) with the largest number of recipients of such visas:

  • Year 2020 – 15% for non India, China.
  • Year 2021 – 10% for non India, China.
  • Year 2022 – 10% for non India, China.

This is pretty much same as what HR 1044 also offers.

Reference: S386

India Green Card backlog Survey

EB2 is the most preferred category for Indian H1B workers to file Green Card.

Share your Green card priority date and see results. You need google account to fill it. No email collected. No spam. You can see survey results once you have filled it yourself.

Open link in new window.

USA Work in USA - H1B, L Visa

   26 Useful Questions & Answers from comments

  1. Thenn
    Thenn 23 Dec, 19 at 2:24 pm

    i have my i140 approved in 2014 through my previous employer. i started a new job in jan 2019. does this bill require you to have a new i140 with the new employer?

  2. Doshin Wills
    Doshin Wills 24 Oct, 19 at 12:06 am

    Can senate still vote on s386 rather than asking for unanimous concent?

  3. Radha
    Radha 25 Jul, 19 at 12:27 pm

    Hey Anil,

    one quick question, since HR 1044 passed in House and if S-386 Bill not passed in senate this year, how long the House approval validity will be there, I mean if S-386 Bill not passed for couple of years, then again need to pass 1044 in House ?

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 25 Jul, 19 at 2:49 pm

      Both HR1044 and S386 will expire in 24 months time if not passed. They will have to be introduced again and go through all the steps again.

      • Radha
        Radha 25 Jul, 19 at 8:07 pm

        Oh k , got it, so in this 2 years, S386 need to pass in senate without any changes,

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 25 Jul, 19 at 8:57 pm

          Yes, that’s correct.

  4. CluelessStranger
    CluelessStranger 23 Jul, 19 at 1:25 am

    Isn’t the “Diversity Lottery” green card meant increase the diversity and employment based and family based ones for the names they suggest. If everything is a to increase diversity why so many categories?

  5. Shyam
    Shyam 28 Jun, 19 at 2:29 pm

    What happens now that Rand Paul has objected? What happens to bills that dont have unanimous consent? Is it lost for this year?

    • fy
      fy 18 Jul, 19 at 9:24 pm

      i guess its dead. if i am not wrong only other way is the bill is to brought to senate floor for voting (unlikely) where i assume it would need filibuster proof support (more unlikely)

      • Anil Gupta
        Anil Gupta 19 Jul, 19 at 5:49 am

        I agree.

  6. SGR
    SGR 27 Jun, 19 at 4:15 pm

    If the US immigration cannot give “fairness” – where all global citizens are on same level playing field, at least they should implement a points-based systems like Canada..Anyone opposing HR1044 and SR386 need to realize that the world is a “meritocracy”. Conservative measures to block highly skilled legal immigration will not pan out well in the long term for any nation. Look at Canada, trying to establish itself as future tech hub. Only reason we havent yet moved there is because the tech HQs of the world are in Bay Area and Seattle. The day companies decide US is being too stringent to get talent, they will move else where and with them we will too and US will be the losing side that day..Rather than create these blocks, Americans need to try and compete with Indians on technology…like us you too spend grueling years learning and studying diligently and developing skills…we came here by being the best among the best…why do you think so many top tech CEOs are Indian?!

    • Combat Wombat
      Combat Wombat 28 Jun, 19 at 7:54 am

      Ah yes, the classic threat of “moving to Canada”

  7. Raghunath
    Raghunath 21 Jun, 19 at 12:51 am

    Hi Anil,

    In case S386 bill is passed, then what will be the new estimate to get green cards? Approximately how long will it take if the country limit is removed?


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 21 Jun, 19 at 12:52 am

      It has long way to go. Bills do not become law so easily.

      They can take years.

      • Raghunath
        Raghunath 21 Jun, 19 at 12:52 am

        Thanks Anil. So until this bill becomes law, H4 EAD should not be removed. I am wondering how H4 EAD is spoiling US economy.

  8. Jay
    Jay 19 Jun, 19 at 8:45 am

    This will cripple people in places like Seattle who are already faced with an extortionate cost of living because of the influx of ‘skilled’ workers. If the tech companies had spent the last 20 years training Americans rather than trying to bring in immigrants that are trained for free that they can also pay less we would not stand on the brink of a cost of living crisis now.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 19 Jun, 19 at 10:03 am

      This act is NOT going to increase the number of green cards. So, these people are already living in USA and waiting for their GCs.

      Instead, they will add more income tax revenue for government than the other people who get GCs by lottery or come to US on family based GC. Isn’t it?

  9. Sentry Alex
    Sentry Alex 18 Jun, 19 at 11:35 pm

    How this act is fair. Green card rules are fair, because each country gets same amount of visas. Having one country that have most applicants doesn’t mean we need to be unfair towards other countries.
    If you can’t cheat the system it doesn’t mean it’s unfair.

    • CMAguru
      CMAguru 19 Jun, 19 at 9:16 am

      So you mean Malta with less than 500K population and China with 1.4B population will receive the same number of green cards? I don’t think this is called FAIR. Why people should be punished based on the country of birth in a country which was created by immigrants.

      • Sentry Alex
        Sentry Alex 19 Jun, 19 at 10:18 am

        It’s fair because in our country we get no more than 7% of immigrants from any other country. Otherwise we’ll have 75% Indian and Chinese and 25 from rest of a world. How is that fair to our country? We need immigrants from every country in a world not just from 2 countries. So when you thinking about fairness think from US perspective.
        We already have this issue with H1B which occupied by Indian consultants and people people from other countries can’t get Visa. We don’t need to have same with greencards.

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 19 Jun, 19 at 10:48 am

          Isn’t H1B visa merit based? Other countries get Green card because it is based on birth and not merit.
          That’s what president Trump is trying to change as the people coming to US based on country of birth use more government resources than they contribute.

          If only two countries are getting most of H1Bs, it means that they have more qualified people to do the job.

          The disparity between merit based H1B and country of birth based Green card is what this bill is trying to resolve.

          • Sentry Alex
            Sentry Alex 19 Jun, 19 at 1:35 pm

            H1B is merrit and lottery based.
            If there more applicants than visas you need to win a lottery. But Indian staffing and consulting agencies file 2-3 times more applications so they can win someone anyway. Cause they don’t care whom to bring.
            I’m both hands up for merit based immigration.

            PS 2 countries getting most H1B because they have most population and cheating practices.
            Also H1B have nothing to do with immigration and greencards that is temporary working non immigration Visa.

          • Combat Wombat
            Combat Wombat 20 Jun, 19 at 10:07 pm

            If only two countries are getting most of H1Bs, it means that they have more qualified people to do the job.

            No, it only means they have more people. Basic statistics.

        • Combat Wombat
          Combat Wombat 20 Jun, 19 at 10:07 pm

          We already have this issue with H1B which occupied by Indian consultants and people people from other countries can’t get Visa. We don’t need to have same with greencards.

          Exactly. In that regard – https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trade-india-exclusive-idUSKCN1TK2LG

          This should have been done a long time ago.

      • Anil Gupta
        Anil Gupta 19 Jun, 19 at 10:03 am

        Aren’t the Chinese getting punished currently due to their country of birth? Your argument holds true for both countries!