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USCIS Announced Eligible Countries for H-2A and H-2B Visa Programs for 2020

By January 16, 2020March 31st, 2021Immigration, News
Creative Commons photo by Wilerson S. Andrade - labeled for reuse. https://www.flickr.com/photos/will_spark/8603567984

USCIS has announced today the countries that are eligible to participate in the H-2A and H-2B visa programs effective January 19, 2020. The H-2A program allows U.S. employers or U.S. agents who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary agricultural jobs. The H-2B program allows U.S. employers or U.S. agents who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary nonagricultural jobs.

Typically, USCIS approves H-2A and H-2B petitions only for nationals of countries that the secretary of Homeland Security has designated as eligible to participate in the programs. However, USCIS may approve H-2A and H-2B petitions, including those that were pending as of the date of the Federal Register notice, for nationals of countries not on the list on a case-by-case basis only if doing so is determined to be in the interest of the United States.

The countries eligible for 2020 are the following:

Andorra Finland Malta Serbia
Argentina France Moldova* Singapore
Australia Germany Mozambique Slovakia
Austria Greece Mexico Slovenia
Barbados Grenada Monaco Solomon Islands
Belgium Guatemala Mongolia South Africa
Brazil Honduras Montenegro South Korea
Brunei Hungary Nauru Spain
Bulgaria Iceland The Netherlands St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Canada Ireland Nicaragua Sweden
Chile Israel New Zealand Switzerland
Colombia Italy Norway Taiwan
Costa Rica Jamaica Panama Thailand
Croatia Japan Paraguay* Timor-Leste
Czech Republic Kiribati Papua New Guinea Tonga
Denmark Latvia Peru Turkey
Dominican Republic* Liechtenstein Poland Tuvalu
Ecuador Lithuania Portugal Ukraine
El Salvador Luxembourg Romania United Kingdom
Estonia North Macedonia Samoa Uruguay
Fiji Madagascar San Marino Vanuatu

*Moldova, Paraguay, and the Dominican Republic are eligible to participate in the H-2A program, but they are not eligible to participate in the H-2B program.

This notice does not affect the status of H-2 beneficiaries who currently are in the United States unless they apply to extend their status. It does apply to nonimmigrants changing status in the United States to H-2A or B.

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