This week we are pleased to have a guest post from Jennifer L. Shanley, a member of Robinson+Cole’s Immigration Group. Her preparation of temporary and permanent immigration petitions allow manufacturing, chemical, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology companies, including some Fortune 100 companies, to retain key business people, scientists, researchers, and other professionals.

President Trump signed a proclamation temporarily suspending the entry of certain H-1B, L-1, H-2B and J-1 foreign national workers and their dependents who are currently outside of the U.S. and do not have a valid visa or other valid travel document. The order will take effect on June 24, 2020 and will be in effect through December 31, 2020, though it could be extended, if the president determines it is necessary.

By way of background, foreign nationals can work in the U.S. in a variety of work authorized categories, some of the most prominent being H-1B and L-1. Those in H-1B status are working for an employer in a specialty occupation; those working pursuant to L-1 status are intracompany transferees who worked for the U.S. company’s related entity abroad in either a managerial or executive role or one that requires specialized knowledge and are working for a U.S. employer in that same capacity. Other significant categories include the J-1, which is an exchange visitor status to participate in an intern, trainee, teacher, camp counselor, au pair, or summer work travel program and the H-2B program allows for temporary nonagricultural labor or services.
Continue Reading Trump Proclamation Curtails the Ability of Manufacturers to Bring Workers in From Outside USA

This is the second of two posts dedicated to reopening plans for manufacturers.  In the first post on May 26, I addressed the first two questions which every manufacturer may wish to ask as it forms its reopening plans.  Manufacturing;  Back to Business (Part One) (May 26, 2020).  Here, I address the next four questions.

The disruption created by the COVID-19 pandemic stressed the entire manufacturing sector.  For the most part, manufacturers responded to those challenges quickly and responsibly.  Now that every state has begun reopening, the manufacturing sector will once again be called on to lead.  Manufacturers which respond well to those challenges will thrive in the months ahead.

The patchwork of federal, state and local laws addressing leaves of absence, protections of people with disabilities and a manufacturer’s general obligation to provide a safe workplace come head-to-head with public reports of an evolving situation.  Right now, the CDC admits that “[m]uch is unknown about how the virus that causes COVID-19 spreads.”  Manufacturers should

Our tradition includes using our first January post to make predictions about “what’s to come” in the year ahead. But first, let’s see how I did over the last year. “Time for 2019 Manufacturing Law Predictions: Drum Roll Please!” (Jan. 9, 2019).

I boldly predicted that on the federal level the government would

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation released its Fiscal Year 2019 Annual Report and, you guessed it, it was “un-good” (a legal term I think).  The Multiemployer Insurance Program recorded a record-breaking deficit of $65.2 billion.  The PBGC warned that the Multiemployer fund will likely be insolvent by 2025, within 6 years from today.  Without the

A few months back, I posted some thoughts about recent efforts to legalize medical and recreational marijuana, with an emphasis on the potential issues such laws would have on manufacturers – particularly manufacturers in a space requiring a heightened concern for employee safety.  See Legal Pot = Manufacturing Storm Clouds” (May 29, 2019). 

I have posted a few times here about using post-employment restrictions to preserve a manufacturer’s competitive advantage.  See  “Non-Compete Cautionary Tale” (Nov, 2, 2018); “I’m New – And It’s No [Trade] Secret” (Oct. 27, 2014) and “Even More Reason for Manufacturers to Update Their Employment Agreements” (June 15, 2015). 

[With apologies to the great Yogi Berra!]

Over the last three years, I have spent a good bit of space on this blog keeping manufacturers informed of the Department of Labor’s efforts to raise the wages of lower and middle level managerial employees and supervisors by raising the “salary threshold”.  See Blog posts of March