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Posted on June 24 2020

Canada gets more attractive as US temporarily freezes immigration

By  Editor
Updated January 12 2024

As per an Executive Order issued on June 22, 2020, US President Donald Trump has suspended employment-based immigration to the US for the rest of 2020 in order to allow the US economy to recover during the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the Executive Order, this has been done “given the lack of sufficient alternative means to protect unemployed Americans from the threat of competition for scarce jobs from new lawful permanent residents”.

The proclamation is effective from 12:01 am EDT on June 24, 2020. It shall remain in effect until December 31, 2020, and maybe continued as necessary.

For the rest of 2020, the US will not be issuing any new employment-based visas – H-1B, H-2B, J, and L. As per Section 2 of the Proclamation, this includes “any alien accompanying or following to join such alien”.

Which US visas will not be issued for the rest of 2020?


For non-immigrants wishing to work in a specialty occupation, services of exceptional merit and ability related to cooperative research and development project under a Department of Defence [DOD], or provide services as a fashion model with distinguished ability or merit.


Through the H-2B program, US employers or US agents meeting specific regulatory requirements can bring foreign nationals to the US for the purposes of filling temporary non-agricultural jobs.


J-1 visas are for those wishing to participate in work and study-based exchange and visitor programs in the US. The J-1 is for students requiring practical training unavailable to them in their home country. The training must be directly related to their specific academic program.

J-2 visas are issued for spouses and dependents of J-1 exchange visitors that will be accompanying or later joining the J-1 visa holder in the US.


L-1A enables a US employer to transfer a manager or executive from any of its affiliated foreign offices to one of its US offices.

L-1B enables a US employer to transfer a professional employee – that has specialized knowledge related to the interest of the organization – from one of its affiliated foreign offices to one of its US offices.

The suspension will be applicable to people that are currently outside the US and do not have a valid US work visa.

Flexibility is provided to the US government to exempt certain individuals from the suspension.

The Executive Order also extends the earlier freezing on new green cards till the end of 2020.

While the US freezes immigration as one of its measures for combating the impact of COVID-19 on the US economy, Canada Continues to Welcome Immigrants. Both provincial and federal draws are being held.

Often, Indian H-1B holders facing challenges in securing US Green Cards look towards Canada for Permanent Residence. A significant number of successful Express Entry candidates are those Indian citizens that had submitted their Canadian immigration applications while living in the US.

With the proper work authorization, Canadians can work in the US.

If you are looking to Study, Work, Visit, Invest or Migrate Overseas, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No. 1 Immigration & Visa Company.

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