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Legislative Committee
 Legislative Committee Updates

SHRM Jacksonville’s Legislative Committee is tasked with keeping Chapter membership and the First Coast community at large abreast of changes in federal, state, and local labor and employment laws.  Given that labor and employment law is created and changed by statutes, ordinances, agency rules and decisions, and rulings from federal and state courts, compliance for HR professionals is more difficult than ever.  Let your SHRM Jacksonville Legislative Committee serve as a resource to help guide you through the maze of today’s labor and employment laws.

Articles below:

  • "Local State and Federal Legislative Updates" - provided by Lindsay Dennis Swiger, Holland & Knight, LLP
  • "H-1B Visas Going... Going… Gone! Now What? Alternative Work Visa Options to Consider" - provided by Giselle Carson, Marks Gray, P.A.
 Legal Matters

Lindsay Dennis Swiger



Holland & Knight, LLP

50 North Laura Street
Suite 3900
Jacksonville, Florida 32202
Tel. 904.798.5413

Click here for Lindsay's bio


Local, State and Federal Legislative Updates

by Lindsay Dennis Swiger, Holland & Knight, LLP

The Jacksonville City Council, Florida Legislature and U.S. Congress have been quite active in the area of workplace regulation so far this year. Many bills, covering a broad spectrum of employment issues, have been introduced and debated within these legislative bodies, achieving varying degrees of success. A few areas that are ripe for legislative action this year and in the near future are highlighted below.

Jacksonville’s Human Rights Ordinance

The debate over whether to expand the City of Jacksonville’s Human Rights Ordinance (HRO) to specifically include anti-discrimination protections based on sexual orientation and gender identity ended on February 14, 2017, when the Jacksonville City Council voted to expand the HRO. Read more

Florida Legislature Continues Discussion in Key Areas

The Florida Legislature has joined the national debate by introducing bills that have significant impacts on pay, hiring, benefits and anti-discrimination laws. While no new workplace laws have been enacted so far this year, the Florida Legislature continues to debate and discuss several important employment-related bills. A few key areas to watch over the next few years are.... Read more

At the Federal Level

The administration under President Trump promised aggressive action. A few subjects of the administration’s focus are of particular importance to employers, including healthcare, immigration, tax reform, and employee leave and workplace flexibility. It is too early to tell what may ultimately be achieved on these issues.

In an effort to shape the conversation, SHRM has taken a leadership role in preparing proposed legislation on paid leave and flexible work options. Read more


H-1B Visas Going... Going… Gone! Now What?
Alternative Work Visa Options to Consider

by Giselle Carson, Business Immigration Attorney with Marks Gray, P.A.

The cap of 85,000 new H-1B visas for FY2018 was met on April 7, 2017.

With the option of obtaining a cap-subject H-1B visa for 2018 off the table, you may wonder: what options are available to employers seeking work visas for skilled foreign nationals? What should the plan of action be for professionals seeking an employment visa?

Unfortunately, some employers must wait until April 2018, when the H-1B quota re-opens and employers can file petitions for the 2019 fiscal year. Early planning will be essential next year and changes are expected, so be sure to consult with an immigration attorney to help plan for your successful workforce strategy.

In the meantime, employers using and seeking global talent should look into other options available to them. Below are some alternative work visa options to consider:

  • Cap-exempt H-1B Visas
  • F-1 Visas for Students - Maximize Use of OPT or Return to School and Seek CPT
  • Green Cards in Extraordinary Ability or National Interest Waiver (NIW) Categories
  • Green Cards under the PERM Track
  • O-1 Visas for Individuals with Extraordinary Ability
  • L-1 Visas for Intra-company Transferees
  • H-1B1 Visas for Citizens of Singapore and Chile
  • E-3 Visas for Citizens of Australia
  • TN Visas for Canadian and Mexican Citizens
  • H-3 Visas for Trainees

Changes to the H-1B process are expected from the Trump Administration before the next filing season.

Giselle Carson, Business Immigration and Compliance Attorney and Past President of the Jacksonville Bar Association, provides regular updates at and on her LinkedIn page.

For additional information, click here.


Giselle Carson, Esq.


Marks Gray, P. A

1200 Riverplace Boulevard
Suite 800
Jacksonville, Florida 32207
Tel: 904.398.0900

Click here for Giselle’s bio.










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