A recent federal court ruling has created uncertainty and speculation about the STEM OPT program. This summary is provided to inform employers and F-1 STEM students of the facts about the effect of this decision....more
Visa Delays World Wide -
The Department of State (DOS) has announced that due to a central computer hardware problem, visa issuance has temporarily stopped.
Applicants interviewed after June 9 will experience...more
As promised since President Obama’s Executive Action of November 20, 2014, USCIS is amending its rules to allow work authorization for H-4 spouses in certain instances effective May 26, 2015.
H-4 spouses (spouse...more
We reviewed the outlines of the President's plan on immigration that he announced last week. These are broad outlines gained from a meeting with the White House that included staff of the American Immigration Lawyers...more
The news is abuzz with speculation about executive action by President Obama in the coming days. Despite these “leaks” no one really knows whether action will be taken or what any plan may contain.
The Fraud Detection and National Security (FDNS) unit of USCIS has begun inspecting L-1 visa holders as planned. FDNS has inspected (and likely is continuing to inspect) H-1B holders for several years. L-1s are the latest...more
The U.S. Department of State issued a statement yesterday regarding the continuing technical problem that is causing delays in both passport and visa issuance. Although they are working on the problem, which was first...more
Today the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it is publishing two proposed rules that are meant to help “attract and retain highly skilled workers”. Proposed rules do not go into effect until notice and...more
Most people who immigrate through family sponsorship (and a few that immigrate through employment sponsorship) must have a sponsor that agrees to make sure they do not rely on public benefits. This sponsorship is...more
With April 1 fast approaching, it is time to take a breath and make sure we have not overlooked anything in the rush to file the “cap” H-1Bs. Our office has made our list and is checking it twice – or three times (Santa has...more
In an update that addresses one glaring gap in E-Verify, USCIS has announced that Social Security numbers that are used fraudulently (stolen, borrowed or purchased from someone else) will be “locked” in the system, generating...more
The December Visa Bulletin (the infamous “waiting line”) shows forward movement or at least no backward movement for all family-based categories. The continued short waiting line for spouses and minor children for permanent...more
In our final note on the CBP/AILA liaison minutes published this week, we are providing a caution regarding CBP’s interpretation of the automatic visa revalidation rules that could be yet another trap for the unwary, albeit...more
In the CBP/AILA liaison meeting, the minutes of which were published this week (see previous posts for more info), we note another (and even more) disturbing interpretation of immigration law by CBP that could take people by...more
The recent CBP/AILA liaison (referenced in earlier posts) highlights a disturbing interpretation of Canadian entry rules. Although CBP is not always the ultimate arbiter of this issue, it is a development to watch....more
In the recent CBP/AILA liaison meeting (see part 1 of this series for definition of these terms), CBP confirmed that it will be transitioning from the Inspectors Field Manual to an Officer’s Reference Tool to provide guidance...more
The immigrant visa numbers are out for November and fortunately no “retrogression” in the major categories will be seen. (“Retrogression” is when the waiting line moves backward – not a good thing.) Instead many categories...more
President Obama signed into law on October 4, 2013, an extension of the visa program for certain Iraqi nationals to obtain “special immigrant visas”.
To qualify, you must have worked for or on behalf of the U.S....more
While the government shut-down is a big distraction from other issues, the push for immigration reform continues. A new bill has been introduced in the House of Representatives, H.R. 15, "The Border Security, Economic...more
In our view, yes. But in the federal government world, only parts of the immigration process are considered “essential” enough to proceed despite the lack of an approved budget. Even so, many immigration services continue to...more
The Visa Bulletin for September advances many categories and does not “retrogress” the gains from August....more
Department of State and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services have taken active steps to prepare their agencies to receive applications relating to same-sex couples based on the Windsor decision....more
Congress takes a holiday in August. But the members do not go fishing – at least not the whole month! They are conducting town hall meetings, in-person visits with constituents, and in all ways reconnecting with their...more
On June 26, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court found Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional. On the immigration front, this means that a U.S. citizen same-sex spouse who is married to a non-citizen may now...more
If you are an E-Verify user, you know what a “TNC” is. It is a “tentative non-confirmation” provided when information entered in E-Verify cannot immediately be verified in the USCIS/SSA databases....more