USCIS and DOJ to Collaborate on Visa Fraud Enforcement 

USCIS’s Fraud Detection and National Security Directorate (FDNS) and the Department of Justice’s Immigrant Employee Rights Division (IER) recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to facilitate collaboration in detecting and eliminating fraud and abuse of employment-based visa programs. These efforts are in furtherance of the Trump administration’s “Buy American, Hire American” executive order.

FDNS was created to support USCIS’s mission of removing fraud from the adjudication process, with a chief focus on administrative investigations. The IER, in turn, prosecutes civil rights violations and is responsible for enforcing the anti-discrimination provisions of the INA, which prohibit employers from discriminating on the basis of citizenship or national origin. In furtherance of these goals, the MOU establishes the agencies’ plan to share information in identifying “potential misuse of the employment-based immigrant and [non-immigrant] visa programs [that] discriminate against available and qualified U.S. workers.”

The MOU is in keeping with the Trump administration’s increased scrutiny of current visa programs and its preference for promoting the hiring of American workers. This will likely increase investigations, worksite audits, and the level of scrutiny across all visa adjudications.