The RAISE Act on Employment Visas


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If the Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act (RAISE Act) goes into effect, the current employment visas would then be merit based. It would be a points system in which applicants must first be able to obtain at least 30 points in order to be considered for the employment visa.

Currently, the employment-based system in place is driven by demand. The employer gets to sponsor an applicant they deem essential to their work force. However, if the RAISE Act is implemented, this model would be changed to a points based system in which applicants do not need to be requested by an employer. However, applicants will be required to score at least 30 points in order to qualify.

Things to Consider: The points-based system looks at the applicant’s salary and English-language ability, education, age, extraordinary achievements, and entrepreneurial initiatives.

Applicants would need at least 30 points, which are decided on the following:

1) Education qualification: (13 points max)

  • 13 points for a U.S. doctorate or professional degree;

  • U.S. bachelor's degree 6 points;

  • 1 point for a U.S. or foreign high school diploma

2) Age (10 points max):

  • People over 50 receive no points

  • Ages 26-30 get 10 points

3) Future salary/job offers (13 points max):

  • 13 points for an employment offer that has 300% of the median household income in their state of employment

4) Investments (12 points max):

  • 12 points for a $1.8 million investment in an American business

5) Extraordinary Achievements (40 points max):

  • 15 points for an Olympic medal;

  • 25 points for a Nobel Laureate

Under the RAISE Act, new green card holders will be ineligible to receive any federal benefits for five years after arriving to the U.S.

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