Update Feb 3, 2021: Both HR 1044 and S386 expired in the congress. They would need to be reintroduced to and restart the whole journey from square one.
The above image shows the first passing passage when it was first voted in House and passed by a majority in 2019. This does not reflect today’s status.
This article will discuss:
- Reconcile differences: Congressman will need to discuss House 1044 and Senate S386 differences and reach a common ground.
- House Vote for Reconciled Bill: Once the differences are reconciled, it will need to be passed again in both House and Senate separately.
- Senate Re-Approval Not Required (If): If the House approves the HR 1044 with Senate Amendments, then it may not need Senate approval again.
- President Sign: The final step would be the President’s signature.
Indian EB2 Movement
If the bill indeed becomes law, my estimation says that the Indian priority date will get current up-to July 2016.
The EB1, EB2, and EB3 queues will start clearing pretty fast and then Indians can expect to get their Green cards within 1-2 years.
This is precisely the reason that other countries like Iran and professionals like Nurses are lobbying to block the country limits removal in Senate at this time. Rand Paul has specifically asked for an amendment to be added to S386 for Nurses as their waiting period is going to be easily 8-10 years after this law.
Fast Green Card for Indians, Chinese
To address the concerns raised by non-backlogged countries and protect their Green card availability, new provisions have been added to HR 1044.
The chances of HR 1044 passing in the Senate are fair at this time. This bill has never reached this stage in the past 15 years even though it was introduced multiple times.
HR 1044 will definitely benefit the Indian and Chinese high skilled H1B workers who have been waiting for their US green cards for decades.
As per our estimates, the Indian EB1, EB2, and EB3 queue will get current for up-to July 2015 to July 2016 as soon as HR 1044 becomes a law. Most of the Green cards will be taken up by Indians and Chinese in the first 5 years.
What is HR 1044 bill
HR 1044 aims to amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to eliminate the per-country numerical limitation for employment-based workers like H1B, L visa.
This Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019 wants to increase the per-country numerical limitation for family-sponsored immigrants.
A bill passes through these steps before it can become law and make some significant contribution to people’s lives:
- Passed House
- Passed Senate
- Senate Amendments need House Approval Again
- To President
- Became Law
Remove Per-Country Limits for Employment-based Green Cards
HR 1044 wants to issue US green Cards on a first-come, first-serve basis instead of Country of Birth.
At this time, each country has a numerical limit of 7% (9,800 of the 140,000 annual green card limit) green cards that can be issued which pushes countries like India and China at a huge backlog with a waiting period of more than 20 years.
This will also help avoid the problem of H1B worker kids ‘Ageing out‘ on turning 21, which effectively makes them start their own Green Card process.
Green Card Backlog Survey
EB2 is the most preferred category for Indian H1B workers to file Green Card.
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