Foreign trainees and interns
The Department of State has issued an interim final rule which will affect the Trainees and Interns section of the Exchange Visitor Program regulations. The new regulations are aimed to prevent sponsors from misusing trainees as employees. The new regulations have discarded the distinction between "specialized" and "non-specialized" occupations, opting to focus on the amount of prior experience the trainee has received rather than the type of training. The new regulations also create a new intern program for foreign nationals who are current students at or recent graduates of degree- or certificate-granting post-secondary academic institutions. Additionally, the new regulations create requirements for sponsors and third parties that sponsors contract to assist them in acquiring foreign nationals. Specifically, the regulations mandate sponsors enter into a written agreement with third parties outlining the full relationship between the parties on all matters involving the Exchange Visitor Program. Finally, the new regulations prohibit sponsors from placing trainees or interns in unskilled or casual labor positions, in positions that involve child care or elder care, or in any kind of position that involves patient care or contact. The new regulations are effective July 19, 2007, and the Department of State will accept comments up to 30 days from June 19, 2007.
72 Fed. Reg. 33,669 (June 19, 2007)
[Interim final regulation]