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The H-1B denial rate remains higher than in prior years

Companies continue to be denied H-1B visas at much higher rates than in the years prior to new policies established by the Trump Administration, according to research released by the National Foundation for American Policy, a nonpartisan research organization.

A report released by the group, which analyzed data from the US Citizenship and Immigration Services’ H-1B Employer Data Hub, found denial rates for new H-1B petitions for “initial” employment rose to 29% through the second quarter of fiscal year 2020 from 6% in fiscal year 2015.

H-1B petitions for “initial” employment are primarily for new employment, typically a case that would count against the H-1B annual limit. USCIS did not make available data for H-1B petitions for “continuing” employment — which are usually extensions for existing employees at the same company or an H-1B visa holder changing to a new employer — for the second quarter of fiscal 2020.

All top 25 employers of new H-1B professionals experienced higher denial rates for H-1B petitions for initial employment through the second quarter than in fiscal year 2015. Global IT services and outsourcing provider Infosys led the group with a denial rate of 59%, followed by IT services giant Cognizant at 52% and Deloitte — which also contracts out H-1B workers to other firms — at 41%.

In June 2020, the Trump administration suspended the entry [1] of foreign nationals on H-1B, L-1 and other temporary visas, citing the economic contraction due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Additional findings from the report include:

Denial rates for H-1B petitions for initial employment by fiscal year:

The full report [2] is available online.