February 18, 2009Client Alert

Restrictive H-1B Provision Incorporated into Final Stimulus Bill Signed by President Obama

The $787 million Stimulus Bill recently signed into law by President Obama includes a provision intended to require financial services companies receiving federal bailout funds to give hiring priority to U.S. workers over foreign workers holding H-1B status. The provision requires that a company that receives money under the federal Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) comply with special hiring rules normally applicable only to "H-1B dependent" employers, regardless of whether the company is considered to be H-1B dependent under the H-1B regulations. These special rules for H-1B dependent employers include compliance with a number of measures before an H-1B worker may be hired, including an attestation that the company actively recruited U.S. workers and is not displacing or replacing U.S. workers with foreign workers.

The provision does not apply to independent contractors providing services to the financial services company through separate contracting agencies. Only direct employees of companies receiving TARP funding are included within the scope of the provision.

This client alert is one of a series designed to provide summaries of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 ("The Act") and information and guidance regarding opportunities and relief made available through The Act. All of The Act client alerts are available on Michael Best's Stimulus and Economic Recovery Team publications page. For additional information on this topic, please feel free to contact the authors of this alert, José A. Olivieri at 414.225.4967, or, or Kelly M. Fortier at 414.277.3460, or, or your Michael Best attorney.

If you are interested in learning about other provisions included in the Act, the Michael Best Stimulus and Economic Recovery Team is prepared to assist you in understanding the implications and in developing and implementing a strategy to secure the benefits of this unprecedented legislation. Specifically, we will assist you to identify opportunities, prepare appropriate proposals and make targeted contacts to secure funds. We will also work with you to ensure that your applications are tailored to meet your needs and that your funded projects proceed in compliance with award requirements and applicable laws.

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