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Muslim-Country Travel Ban Upheld in Part

The U.S. Supreme Court decided that the United States can ban entry by persons from Muslim countries, partially and temporarily upholding the Executive Order travel ban. Travelers from Iran, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, and...more

But Officer, I Only Had One Joint, and It Was Legal!

Adult consumption of marijuana for medical or recreational purposes is legal in many states, including Washington State. Consumption also effectively is decriminalized (but still illegal) in British Columbia, Amsterdam, and...more

Executive Order on Immigration and Travel Restrictions – Suspended

UPDATE: In a landmark decision on February 9, 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals halted the Executive Order travel ban imposed on persons from predominantly-Muslim countries. The Court upheld the temporary restraining...more

USCIS Revises Immigration Forms on Dec. 23, 2016 (Without Notice) and Increases Filing Fees (With Notice)

With no advance warning, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) revised more than 40 forms on the Friday of the 2016 December long holiday weekend. The forms all have an effective date the same day the notice was...more

12/29/2016  /  Filing Fees , Green Cards , Immigration , USCIS

H-1B Quota for October 1: Prepare Labor Condition Applications by March 16

The U.S. government’s H-1B temporary professional worker program allows U.S. employers to hire foreign nationals in “specialty occupation” positions that require a bachelor's degree or the equivalent. Under current law, the...more

Safe Harbor Period for H-1B Petitions Following Job Site Changes Ends January 15

Employers who have moved H-1B workers from one location to another may need to file new H-1B petitions, rather than rely on a prior approval. For moves that already occurred, the employer must file within the “safe harbor...more

H-1B Quota for October 1: Prepare Labor Condition Applications by March 16

The U.S. government’s H-1B temporary professional worker program allows U.S. employers to hire foreign nationals in “specialty occupation” positions that require a bachelor's degree or the equivalent. Under current law, the...more

Obama Immigration Executive Action: How It Affects Business and Employment

In a bold move, on November 20, 2014, President Barack Obama announced his Immigration Accountability Executive Actions to address flaws in the current immigration system. The plan contains three parts: 1) Enhanced...more

Obama Immigration Executive Action: Impact on Business and Employment

In a bold move, on November 20, 2014, President Obama announced his Immigration Accountability Executive Actions to address flaws in the current immigration system. The plan contains three parts...more

U.S. Expands Visas to Chinese Citizens to 10 Years

Chinese citizens who would like to travel to the United States now can have a visa valid for up to 10 years. Previously, the limit was one year. During President Obama’s November 2014 visit to China, the two countries...more

11/11/2014  /  China , Popular , Visas

Banks and the EB-5 Program: Look Before You Leap

Many Washington banks have been asked to serve either as lender for an EB-5 project or as escrow holder to receive EB-5 customer deposits. While the benefits of serving in such roles, especially for a large real estate...more

Commuting to the United States as a Permanent Resident: ‘Alien Commuters’ or ‘Green Card Commuters’

Generally, a foreign national who is a permanent resident of the United States must reside permanently in the United States or else risk losing permanent resident status. However, persons who have been granted U.S. permanent...more

H-1B Lottery: How Will it Work if the Quota is Filled?

April 1, 2014, is the first day USCIS will accept H-1B petitions for quota/cap-subject cases for FY 2015, commencing October 1, 2014. Only 65,000 H-1Bs are available nationwide per year for new jobs for foreign workers...more

3/27/2014  /  H-1B , Quotas , USCIS , Visa Caps , Visas

Government October 2013 Shutdown to Haunt H-1B and other Foreign Workers

Effective October 1, 2013, U.S. federal government operations are experiencing a lapse in appropriations due to the inability of Congress to pass a funding bill. The shutdown is preventing employers from filing H-1B...more

Government Shutdown and Employment-Related Immigration Implications

Effective October 1, 2013, U.S. federal government operations are experiencing a lapse in appropriations due to the inability of Congress to pass a funding bill. Following are implications on immigration-related government...more

Immigration Reform Passes Senate Judiciary Earlier than Expected

A congressional immigration reform proposal passed its first test and was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee on May 21, 2013. Action on the bill had been expected before the Memorial Day break, but not so much sooner...more

I-9 Employer Verification Form – Use New Version Starting May 7, 2013

Employers must begin using the new version of Form I-9 on May 7, 2013. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) under the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced publication of the revised Form I-9 for...more

Senate Releases Sweeping Immigration Reform Bill

Following are some highlights for the comprehensive bipartisan immigration reform bill introduced in the Senate on April 17, 2013. H-1B Cap Raised, but New Restrictions on Temporary H-1B Workers. In an effort promote...more

Newly Revised Form I-9

Employers must begin using the new version of Form I-9. On March 7, 2013, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) under the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced publication of a revised Form I-9 for...more

3/11/2013  /  Eligibility , Hiring & Firing , I-9 , USCIS

Immigration Reform: Comparing the Senate Proposal with the White House Proposal

This week, both President Obama and the Senate announced frameworks for comprehensive immigration reform. The following is a comparison of key elements in each of the plans....more

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