News Release
May 11, 2023
ALF Urges Supreme Court To Review Foreign-Student Guest Worker Case

Question Presented:

Whether Foreign-Student Visa Holders Can Stay In The
United States After Receiving Their STEM Degrees
& Compete For Technology-Sector Work

"The validity of DHS's Optional Practical Training (OPT) program is enormously important to the tens of thousands of foreign-student visa holders who seek to work in the United States after receiving their degrees, to the many U.S. technology-sector employers who depend on their availability, and to the highly educated American professionals who compete against them for STEM-related employment."  
-- Atlantic Legal Foundation
The Atlantic Legal Foundation has filed an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to decide whether the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has authority under the Immigration and Nationality Act ("INA") to allow “F-1” student visa holders to stay in the United States and work for computer or other technology-sector companies up to 3 years after receiving a Science, Technology, Engineering, or Mathematics (“STEM”) degree. 

ALF’s brief supporting the recently filed certiorari petition in Washington Alliance of Technology Workers v. DHS, No. 22-1071, takes no position on this important statutory interpretation question, but argues that its resolution will directly affect, one way or another, the size, composition, and permanence of the nation’s crucial, high-technology workforce, and thus, the national, and even global, economy. The brief also explains that given the intense, technology-related competition that the United States continuously faces from foreign adversaries, robust employment in the technology sector is a matter of long-term national security.

In a 2 to 1 decision, a D.C. Circuit panel held that the INA vests DHS with broad authority to set the duration of F-1 students' and other types of nonimmigrant visa holders’ stays in the United States, and the conditions under which they may work. Strong dissenting opinions were filed when the panel majority issued its decision, and again, when the court of appeals denied rehearing en banc.

ALF's amicus brief argues that the Supreme Court should review the case “given the broad practical importance of the question presented, the breadth and potential ramifications of the majority opinion’s interpretation of the INA nonimmigrant alien provisions, the dissenting judges’ contrary views, and the major policy-related decisions underlying the STEM OPT program.”

Please read the Case Summary on ALF's website for additional information.
Media Contact: Larry Ebner | Tel: 202-349-1421
About the Atlantic Legal Foundation

For more than 45 years, the Atlantic Legal Foundation, a national, nonprofit, nonpartisan, public interest law firm, has advocated in the Supreme Court, federal courts of appeals, and state appellate courts for individual liberty, free enterprise, property rights, limited & responsible government, sound science in judicial & regulatory proceedings, and effective education, including parental rights and school choice.
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