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NRF files suit against administration's restrictions on visas

The National Retail Federation and several prominent business organizations including

the National Association of Manufacturers, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, TechNet and

Intrax filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in San Francisco today opposing President

Trump’s proclamation suspending new nonimmigrant visas.

According to the NRF Chief Administrative Officer and General Counsel Stephanie

Martz “This proclamation is meant to protect American jobs but instead it threatens the

millions of rank-and-file workers whose jobs rely on experts coming up with the latest

technology to keep retail moving forward. Advanced computer and IT jobs are already

hard to fill, and retailers need to be able to bring in talent from wherever they can find it.

This sweeping measure could have a significant negative impact on their ability to do


The lawsuit claims that the proclamation goes beyond Trump’s authority, is inconsistent

with federal law on labor market protections in connection with nonimmigrant visas, is

not “rationally related” to its stated purpose of addressing a temporary spike in

unemployment, and violates the federal Administrative Procedures Act. The suit seeks

an injunction prohibiting the proclamation from being carried out and asks that the

proclamation be set aside.

Signed on June 22, the proclamation affects a number of visas, including H1-B visas for

highly skilled workers, H-4 visas for their spouses, H2-B guest worker visas, L visas

companies use to bring international workers to the United States and most “cultural

exchange” J visas.

NAM Senior Vice President and General Counsel Linda Kelly mentioned that the

unlawful restrictions don’t just limit visas but also restrains economic recovery at a time

when the very future of our country hangs in the balance.

The lawsuit aims to overturn the sweeping and unlawful immigration restrictions, which,

according to Chamber CEO Thomas J. Donohue, is an “unequivocal ‘not welcome’ sign

to the engineers, executives, IT experts, doctors, nurses and other critical workers who

help drive the American economy.”

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