New minimum wage rule turns up the heat on US immigration

US new minimum wage rule

The US has become a tricky place for immigrants. As per the latest rules imposed by the Trump administration, the minimum salary of doctors and other personnel arriving in the country on H-1B visa has been hiked by 40%. This has virtually made it impossible for US hospitals to hire physicians and medical specialists from foreign countries.

Will Trump’s “Save Americans!” clarion call work against America finally? As the Trump administration regularly affirms, the latest moves against immigrants have been intended to save American jobs from draining into the hands of immigrants. But will a stark disregard for the skilled professionals serving America’s vast range of enterprises really serve the purpose? Time will tell.

The push back against the Interim Final Rule

The decision to increase the minimumwages of overseas professionals was passed as an Interim Final Rule. This was challenged by US colleges and a group of trade organizations by filing a lawsuit in the Northern District of California court. The plaintiffs included:

  • US Chamber of Commerce
  • National Association of Manufacturers
  • American Association of International Healthcare Recruitment
  • California Institute of Technology
  • Stanford Junior University
  • Cornell University
The odds are against industries and immigrants! The increased minimum wages for foreigners arriving on non-immigrant USA work permit is impacting American businesses in a big way. The immigrants are also finding it hard to enter the US enterprises to work in USA, as the recruitments stall owing to increased overheads.

Even the not-for-profit sponsors for H-1B visa holders are feeling the adverse impact of the new visa decision. These include hospitals and some general business sponsors.

Smaller towns will have a bigger problem! Going by the new wage rates, a pediatrician’s wage will increase by 177% in Wichita, Kansas. In parts of Michigan, this will be 153%. This is a daunting situation for such smaller regions.

In places where DoL (Department of Labor) have not enough data in hand, a $100 hourly wage has been made mandatory. This will raise the annual pay of medical residents in teaching hospitals from $50,000 – $70,000 to 208,000. This will also be the case with Minneapolis, where the prevailing wage rate for a pediatrician is $115,000. The rural clinics in smaller towns will be hit hard with this hike.

Obviously, concerns are mounting! The employers in the US could be forced to violate the new wage rule in desperation, risking fines of up to $100,000 per violation.

In view of common interest on both sides, the US could well be reconsidering its decisions in time. This is especially a relevant possibility as the USA’s northern neighbor Canada is doing much better.

If you are looking to Study, Work, Visit, Invest or Migrate to USA, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No.1 Immigration & Visa Company.

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Anshul Singhal

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