Christopher Thorn

Christopher Thorn

Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC

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2018 Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Program Announced

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has announced the opening of the registration period for the 2018 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program. The Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery Program enables foreign nationals to apply for permanent...more

9/20/2016 - Diversity Lottery Green Cards Immigrants US Department of State Visas

Company Fined $100,000 for Export Violation Involving H-1B Employee

Microwave Engineering Corp., a Massachusetts-based microwave components company, has agreed to pay a $100,000 penalty to the U.S. Department of State’s Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) for allowing an H-1B...more

6/28/2016 - DDTC Export Administration Regulations Exports H-1B ITAR

Lengthy Delays for Nonimmigrant Visas at U.S. Consulates in India

Applicants for nonimmigrant visas in India are currently experiencing increased wait times for interview appointments at the U.S. Consular Posts. The Consulates in India are dealing with an extraordinary backlog that is not...more

6/17/2016 - Delays Non-Immigrant Visas US Department of State Visas

DHS Publishes Final New STEM OPT Rule

On Friday, March 11, 2016, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published the long-awaited final rule relating to Optical Practical Training (OPT) extensions for foreign students with science, technology,...more

3/16/2016 - DHS Final Rules Foreign Students OPT STEM

Time to Get Ready for the H-1B Season

The most common H work visa is the H-1B which is for “specialty occupations.” A specialty occupation is one that requires at least a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent in a specific field of study as a minimum for entry into...more

1/22/2016 - H-1B Labor Condition Applications USCIS Work Visas

DHS Proposes Rule Affecting Certain Employment-Based Immigrant and Nonimmigrant Applications

On December 31, 2015, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a proposed rule in the Federal Register, entitled “Retention of EB-1, EB-2 and EB-3 Immigrant Workers and Program Improvements Affecting High-Skilled...more

1/5/2016 - ACWIA Corporate Counsel DHS Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) USCIS Visas

DOL Refuses to Forgive Clerical Error on PERM Application

The permanent labor certification process (also referred to as PERM) allows an employer to hire a foreign national to work permanently in the United States. Prior to filing a PERM application for a foreign worker with the...more

10/8/2015 - BALCA DOL Hiring & Firing PERM Prevailing Wages Recruitment Policies

2017 Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Program Announced

The U.S. Department of State has announced the opening of the registration period for the DV-2017 Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery Program. The DV Lottery Program enables foreign nationals to apply for permanent residence in the...more

10/2/2015 - Diversity Lottery Electronic Filing Estate Tax Foreign Nationals Gift Tax Green Cards Income Taxes US Department of State Visas

USCIS Announces New Process for Determining Eligibility to File for Adjustment of Status in Backlogged Preference Categories

On September 9, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced a major overhaul of its system for determining adjustment of status eligibility for individuals with family-based or employment-based petitions...more

9/11/2015 - Foreign Nationals Time Extensions USCIS Visa Bulletins Visas

USCIS Finalizes New Guidance on L-1B Specialized Knowledge Petitions

On August 17, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a final Policy Memorandum on L-1B visa adjudications (L-1B Memo). The L-1 (intracompany transferee) nonimmigrant visa classification permits...more

8/27/2015 - Intracompany Transferees L-1B New Guidance USCIS Visas

Corporation Pleads Guilty and Forfeits $1 Million for Hiring Unauthorized Workers

On July 14, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney’s Office, announced that a corporation domiciled in Pennsylvania pled guilty to a one-count Bill of Information charging the company with harboring unauthorized...more

7/17/2015 - Audits Criminal Prosecution DHS Government Investigations Guilty Pleas Hiring & Firing I-9 Immigration Enforcement Unlawful Aliens

BALCA on Lawful Reasons for Rejecting U.S. Applicants in PERM Cases

The permanent labor certification process (also referred to as PERM) allows an employer to hire a foreign national to work permanently in the United States. Prior to filing a PERM application for a foreign worker with the...more

6/2/2015 - BALCA Burden of Proof DOL Foreign Nationals Hiring & Firing PERM Recruitment Policies

USCIS Temporarily Suspends Premium Processing for H-1B Extensions of Stay

On May 19, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that, starting May 26, 2015, it will temporarily suspend premium processing for all H-1B Extension of Stay petitions until July 27, 2015. During...more

5/20/2015 - H-1B Human Resources Professionals Immigration Procedures Popular USCIS

PERM Denial Upheld for Failure to Submit Signed Recruitment Report

The permanent labor certification process (also referred to as PERM) allows an employer to hire a foreign national to work permanently in the United States. Prior to filing a PERM application for a foreign worker with the...more

5/19/2015 - BALCA DOL Foreign Nationals Hiring & Firing PERM

DHS and DOL Issue H-2B Rules

The H-2B program allows U.S. employers or U.S. agents who meet specific regulatory requirements to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary nonagricultural jobs....more

5/5/2015 - DHS Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) H-2B Temporary Protected Status USCIS Visas

USCIS Issues Draft Guidance on L-1B Specialized Knowledge Visas

The L-1 (“intracompany transferee”) nonimmigrant visa classification permits multinational companies to transfer certain categories of employees from their foreign operations to their operations in the United States....more

3/27/2015 - Guidance Update Hiring & Firing L-1B USCIS Visas

DHS and DOL to Issue Joint Interim Final Rule on H-2B Petitions

As previously-reported, on March 4, 2015, the federal district court in the Northern District of Florida vacated the Department of Labor’s (DOL) 2008 H-2B regulations on the ground that DOL lacks authority under the...more

3/18/2015 - DHS DOL H-2B Interim Guidance

H-4 Spouses of Certain H-1B Workers May Apply for Work Authorization Beginning on May 2015

On February 24, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director León Rodríguez announced that effective May 26, 2015, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will extend employment authorization to H-4...more

2/25/2015 - DHS Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) H-1B H-4 Spouses Spouses USCIS

H-1B Season Is Fast Approaching

Employers are reminded that, beginning April 1, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting new H-1B temporary worker petitions for foreign nationals requesting an employment start date on or...more

2/6/2015 - Foreign Nationals H-1B OPT Temporary Employees USCIS

Major Immigration Changes

On Thursday evening, November 20, 2014, President Obama summarized his Immigration Accountability Executive Actions. This will signal the beginning of contentious political debate that should go on for at least the next few...more

11/24/2014 - Barack Obama Customs and Border Protection DACA DAPA Deportation DHS Employer Liability Issues Enforcement Executive Orders Immigration Reform STEM USCIS

2016 Diversity Immigrant Visa Lottery Program Announced

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has announced the opening of the registration period for the DV-2016 Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery Program. The DV Lottery Program enables foreign nationals to apply for permanent residence in...more

10/3/2014 - Diversity Lottery Immigrants US Department of State Visas

Data Entry Completed for Fiscal Year 2015 H-1B Cap Cases

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that data entry of all FY15 H-1B cap petitions has been completed. USCIS will now begin returning all H-1B cap petitions that were not selected in the lottery....more

5/5/2014 - H-1B Lottery USCIS Visa Caps Visas

H-1B Cap for Fiscal Year 2015 Has Been Reached

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on Monday, April 7, 2014 that it had received enough H-1B petitions to meet the cap for fiscal year 2015 (which is the period October 1, 2014 to September 30, 2015)....more

4/14/2014 - H-1B Highly-Skilled Workers Visa Immigration Reform USCIS Visa Caps

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