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Naples Employers Reaching to Jamaica for Seasonal Employees

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Florida employers in Naples are looking to Jamaica to fill temporary and seasonal jobs, according to an article by the Naples Daily News. Specifically, the hospitality industry is taking advantage of the skill set and experience offered by Jamaican employees.

To bring Jamaican workers to the U.S. legally, Florida employers are leveraging the federal H-2B program. The H-2B program is designed to help non-agricultural foreign workers gain legal entry into the United States to perform temporary job functions.

As outlined by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the H-2B program is restrictive and only available under certain conditions. A U.S. employer can petition on behalf of a worker foreign worker if:

  • There is a shortage of U.S. workers willing and able to perform the job functions in question;
  • The use of foreign H-2B workers does not and will not lead to a negative impact on the working conditions or wages of U.S. workers; and
  • The foreign worker will be employed in a temporary capacity only, even if the employer plans to fill the position permanently at some point.

The USCIS provides four situations under which a job can be considered temporary:

  • One-time occurrence – A temporary situation creates a one-time need for workers. The employer did not in the past and will not in the future need to employ workers in this capacity.
  • Seasonal need – A regular and recurring situation that requires additional capacity to fulfill customer needs. The employer must be able to predict seasonal need. And the employer cannot claim a seasonal need to cover for permanent workers on vacation.
  • Peakload need – A situation where permanent workers normally fulfill all customer needs. But due to extenuating circumstances, permanent staff are unable to fulfill all customer needs. Temporary workers can pick up the slack, so long as the employer does not foresee an increase to permanent staff.
  • Intermittent need – An occasional situation where the employer does not normally need workers to perform a set of duties. But in certain circumstances, the employer needs temporary employees to perform these duties for a limited amount of time.

Congress maintains a limit on the number of H-2B workers who enter the United States each year. The annual limit on H-2B workers is 66,000. During the first half of the fiscal year (October 1 to March 31), the United States allows 33,000 H-2B workers. During the second half of the fiscal year (April 1 to September 30), the United States allows 33,000 H-2B workers.

Do You Need Legal Help from a Knowledgeable Employment Lawyer? 

Whether you are dealing with temporary foreign workers or other aspects of employment law, it can be a challenge to align with various local, state and federal regulations. Thankfully a knowledgeable employment attorney can make a real difference, explaining your rights and duties under the law.

Featuring headquarters Miami, Florida, Penichet Law has wide-ranging experience in matters of labor and employment law. If you have questions about labor and employment law, please feel free to contact us at your earliest convenience. We will be happy to walk through all of the necessary considerations with you.

Resources:

naplesnews.com/story/money/business/local/2017/08/24/when-hiring-foreign-workers-naples-employers-look-jamaica/572803001/

uscis.gov/working-united-states/temporary-workers/h-2b-temporary-non-agricultural-workers