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New U.S. Electronic Visa Update System (EVUS) required for Certain Chinese Nationals beginning November 29, 2016

On October 20, 2016, the Department of Homeland Security issued a final rule requiring travelers holding People’s Republic of China (PRC) passports with B-1, B-2, or 10-year B-1/B-2 visas to enroll in the Electronic Visa...more

11/3/2016  /  China , DHS , EVUS , Final Rules , Passports , Visas

DHS Issues Final Rule: USCIS Filing Fees to Increase Effective December 23, 2016

On October 24, 2016, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a final rule increasing filing fees associated with a significant number of immigration applications. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)...more

10/26/2016  /  DHS , Filing Fees , Final Rules , USCIS

U.S. Diversity Visa Lottery Offers Alternative Immigration Path for Employees Subject to Backlogs

The U.S. Department of State opened the Diversity Visa (DV) lottery registration for FY 2017 at noon eastern standard time (EST) on October 1, 2015. It will close on Tuesday, November 3, 2015, at noon (EST). The DV program...more

USCIS Halts Processing of Employment-Based Adjustment Applications Until October 1

The U.S. Department of State reports that the statutory cap for employment-based preference categories for fiscal year (FY) 2015 has been reached. The federal government’s fiscal year runs from October 1 to September 30....more

EB Filing Dates Pushed Back in Revised October 2015 Visa Bulletin

On September 25, 2015, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) issued a revised Visa Bulletin for October 2015 that supersedes the original Bulletin dated September 9, 2015. In the current Bulletin, the dates for certain...more

Unanticipated Retrogression of Visa Numbers for China and India in September 2015

The U.S. Department of State recently released its September 2015 Visa Bulletin, reflecting a significant retrogression for China and India in the employment-based Second Preference category (EB-2). The EB-2 category for...more

Court Finds STEM OPT Extension Rule to Be Deficient: Vacatur Stayed Temporarily to Allow DHS to Cure

On August 12, 2015, in Washington Alliance of Technology Workers v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security et al., No. 14-529 (August 12, 2015), Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia...more

8/17/2015  /  DHS , Form F-1 , H-1B , Notice and Comment , OPT , Popular , STEM

USCIS Issues Final Guidance on Recent AAO Decision in Simeio

On Tuesday, July 21, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued its final guidance on the recent Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) decision in Matter of Simeio Solutions, LLC. Under Simeio, employers...more

Who’s That Knocking at Your Door? USCIS Plans House Calls to Retrieve Erroneous EADs

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is taking extreme measures to get back all the three-year Employment Authorization Document (EAD) cards erroneously issued to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)...more

USCIS Resumes Premium Processing for H-1B Extension Petitions

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it will resume accepting Requests for Premium Processing for all H-1B extension petitions effective July 13, 2015. Premium processing for H-1B extensions had...more

Retailers Should Review I-9 Processes in Light of Recent DOJ Settlement

Late last month, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) reached a settlement agreement with a large clothing retailer to resolve claims that the company discriminated against a non-U.S. citizen in violation of the federal...more

USCIS Completes Return of H-1B Petitions Not Selected in the Lottery

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on July 14, 2015, that it completed processing the return of fiscal year 2016 H-1B cap-subject petitions that were not selected in its “computer-generated random...more

7/21/2015  /  H-1B , USCIS , Visa Caps , Visas

Fifth Circuit Hears Arguments on the Proposed Reversal of the Block on Executive Actions

A three-judge panel in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, hearing arguments in State of Texas v. United States of America, questioned the attorneys for the U.S. Department of Justice and 26 states about whether the block on...more

H-1B Cap Case Filing Receipt Deadline Set For April 1, 2015: Retailers Should Start Planning Now for FY 2016

Retailers that utilize the H-1B visa for employees in their information technology, design, marketing, buying, and planning departments should start considering their FY 2016 immigration needs now that the H-1B cap filing...more

11/12/2014  /  H-1B , Hiring & Firing , USCIS , Visa Caps

New U.S.-Russia Visa Agreement Facilitates Travel For Business and Tourism

Under the terms of an agreement simplifying the U.S.-Russia bilateral visa program, American and Russian travelers for business or tourism are now eligible to receive three-year, multiple-entry visas authorizing stays for up...more

11/1/2012  /  Business Visas , Visas

Stricter Scrutiny Of Labor Certifications—Increase In Audits And Supervised Recruitment By The DOL

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has indicated that it will further expand its use of “integrity” measures in the permanent labor certification program. These measures include the conduct of audit investigations and...more

11/1/2012  /  Audits , DOL , Enforcement , PERM , Visas

Reminder: Diversity Visa (“Green Card”) Lottery Deadline

The application period for the Department of State’s (DOS) Diversity Visa (DV) (“green card”) lottery for Fiscal Year 2014 began on October 2, 2012. Interested persons have until 12:00 noon Eastern Daylight Time on November...more

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