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New STEM OPT Extension Rules: Critical Takeaways, Part 1

In this short series on the new STEM OPT rules, Susan Cohen, Chair of Mintz Levin’s Immigration Section will examine the top takeaways for students and their employers. The first post will focus on the timing rules related to...more

New STEM OPT Rule Goes Into Effect May 10: Good news and challenges

Both F-1 students and employers have been following the litigation over the F-1 OPT (optional practical training) program. The government was sued by tech workers in Washington, D.C. regarding a part of this program, the...more

DHS Extends STEM Optional Practical Training to 24 Months

Foreign nationals who wish to pursue an advanced degree in the United States obtain an F-1 student visa to do so. After F-1 students obtain their degrees, they may be authorized to participate in post-completion optional...more

DHS Releases Published F-1 Visa STEM OPT Regulation

On March 11, 2016, the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published the final regulation for F-1 nonimmigrant students on optional practical training (OPT) with degrees in science, technology, engineering, or...more

New STEM OPT Rules: More than Just an Extra Seven Months of Work Authorization

On March 11, 2016, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published its final rule on enhancements to the Optional Practical Training (OPT) program for F-1 international students in science, technology, engineering...more

Department of Homeland Security issues final rule for international students with F-1 visas and Optional Practical Training

On Friday, March 11, 2016, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) amended its regulations and issued a final rule for international students with F-1 visas and Optional Practical Training (OPT) who obtain degrees from U.S....more

DHS Issues STEM OPT Final Rule

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security ("DHS") recently issued its long-awaited F–1 nonimmigrant student visa regulations on optional practical training (“OPT”) for certain students with degrees in science, technology,...more

Converting 17-Month STEM OPT to 24-Month STEM OPT Under New Regulations Commencing May 10, 2016

Starting May 10, 2016, a new regulation published last month by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) takes effect which increases the work authorization extension period from 17 to 24 months for F-1 students holding...more

STEM OPT Extension Will Increase To 24 Months, But Imposes New Obligations On Employers

On March 11, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security published a new rule reauthorizing Optional Practical Training for F-1 nonimmigrant students with qualifying degrees in science, technology, engineering or mathematics...more

Availability of New STEM OPT Extensions Limited to Certain Students

Students with existing OPT grants must have at least 150 days of this grant remaining before seeking a further extension under the new rule....more

DHS Publishes Final Stem OPT Rule

On Thursday, March 10, the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) published the long-anticipated final STEM Optional Practical Training (“OPT”) rule in the Federal Register. The final rule will take effect on May 10, 2016. ...more

New Rules for Employers of F-1 STEM OPT Graduates

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the release of a new rule governing the STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT) program. Under the rule, qualifying F-1 graduates of Science, Technology, Engineering and...more

New 24-month F-1 STEM OPT Rule Effective May 10, 2016

On March 9, 2016, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) posted to the Federal Register an advance copy of its final rule regarding certain F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT) extensions. The new rule replaces the...more

DHS Announces Final Rule on STEM OPT Employment Authorization

The final rule adds employer obligations to the STEM OPT program. The US Department of Homeland Security has released an advance version of its long-anticipated final rule that expands employment authorization for...more

The Department of Homeland Security Previews Final Rule Governing STEM OPT

Yesterday, March 9, 2016, the Department of Homeland Security previewed the final rule governing STEM OPT, to be released on Friday. This rule is effective May 10, 2016, except the addition of 8 CFR 214.16, which is effective...more

H-1B Cap Season, Denial of STEM OPT Rule, Amendments to Visa Waiver Program, March Visa Bulletin

A foreign national qualifies for H-1B status if he/she holds at least a U.S. Bachelor's Degree (or equivalent) relevant to the field in which he/she will be working, and the position normally requires at least a Bachelor's...more

Decision on STEM OPT Program is Delayed Until May 10, 2016

On January 23, 2016, Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle of the U.S. District Court for the District of Colombia granted the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s motion to extend the stay of the vacatur of the STEM OPT rule from...more

A Preview of Business Immigration in 2016: OPT (Part 2/6)

From proposals to overhaul OPT to decreasing the number of H-1Bs, 2016 is already proving to be an interesting year for business immigration. In a series of posts, the Mintz Levin team will provide an overview of the cases,...more

Emergency Action Taken to Extend STEM OPT Program Rule Through May 2016

As reported in our November 2, 2015 blog post, the present STEM OPT rule which allows F-1 students with U.S. degrees in science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) to extend their optional practical training (OPT)...more

Obama’s Executive Actions on Immigration: An Update to Two Key Initiatives Designed to Enhance the Employment of Highly Skilled...

In November 2014, President Obama issued a number of executive actions designed to make significant changes to the U.S. immigration system. The most controversial initiatives were the deferred action policies aimed at...more

DHS’s Deadline to Promulgate Final STEM OPT Regulations Extended to May 10, 2016

On January 23, 2016, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia granted the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) request to extend the deadline to finalize the new set of Optional Practical Training (OPT)...more

STEM OPT Update: Program Remains Valid Through May 10, 2016

On January 23, 2016, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia granted a motion to extend the stay of vacatur of the current STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT) program until May 10, 2016, providing the...more

Court Allows DHS Until May 10, 2016, to Issue New STEM OPT Rule

The U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia gave the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) until May 10, 2016, to correct the procedural defects to its STEM OPT rule. The prior deadline had been February 12, 2016, to...more

April 1, 2016 - H-1B “Lottery” Begins Again!

USCIS to accept new H-1B filings beginning April 1, 2016. Filing by April 7th will be critical: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will start accepting filings of new H-1B petitions on April 1st for the fiscal year...more

DHS is granted an extension of existing STEM OPT rule through May 12, 2016

To the relief of thousands of foreign nationals and many U.S. businesses and higher education institutions, on January 23, 2016, the federal district court in Washington D.C. presiding over Washington Alliance of Technology...more

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