Immigration Education

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Immigration issues written by leading professionals.
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A Review of the Supreme Court’s 2015 - 2016 Term

Last week, the Supreme Court ended its 2015-2016 session under a cloud of uncertainty. On February 22, 2016, Justice Antonin Scalia, the stalwart of the Court’s conservative wing for 30 years, passed away. Justice Scalia’s...more

Work and Travel Guidance for F-1 Students with Pending H-1B “Change of Status” Applications and “Cap-Gap” Employment Authorization...

This advisory summarizes key travel and employment issues if you are an F-1 student with Optional Practical Training (OPT) employment eligibility and an H-1B change of status filing on your behalf has been accepted by US...more

When Rolling the Dice Didn’t Lead to Success: Visa Options After the H-1B Cap Lottery

Employers seek predictability when hiring employees. You don’t need to be a mathematician (although that might help qualify you as an outstanding researcher) to know that the odds of being selected in U.S. Citizenship and...more

SEVP Issues STEM Designated Degree Program List

The Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) has created a STEM Designated Degree Program list, which includes the fields of study that the Department of Homeland Security considers to be science, technology, engineering...more

DHS Extends Time Period for STEM OPT Employment Authorization

As of May 2016, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has expanded the time period during which a foreign student with a degree from a U.S. university in a science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) field may...more

American Immigration Lawyers Association shares online resources to help understand new DHS final rule

On May 10, 2016, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) published the following announcement about online resources following the Department of Homeland Security’s new final rule affecting international students...more

Immigration Update: Rule Changes for International Student Workers

Many of our clients employ international students in a status known as "F-1/OPT," which is "Optional Practical Training," a program similar to an internship that allows international students to get practical work experience...more

Ready or not, the new STEM OPT rule is in play!

As higher education institutions with international students should already be aware, the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) recently published a new regulation that provides eligible F-1 graduates from STEM programs in...more

Major Modifications to Immigration Programs May Cause Major Headaches

Today, I’m delighted to bring you what I hope will be the first of several updates for employers from the immigration law perspective. One of my newest colleagues, Ashley Mendoza, along with my law partner Brenda Eckert,...more

New STEM OPT Extension Program Requirements

The new 24-month STEM (Science Technology, Engineering, and Math) Optional Practical Training (OPT) program will take effect on May 10, 2016. The substantially revised STEM OPT program expands total OPT time to 36 months for...more

Approaching the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s New STEM OPT Extension Regulations with Caution

On Tuesday, May 10, 2016, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) will implement major modifications to Optional Practical Training (“OPT”) extensions for students on F-1 visas enrolled in science, technology,...more

U.S. Government Expands Job Opportunities for Foreign STEM Students

As HR Legalist has reported, the H-1B Cap has been met for FY2017. USCIS received over 236,000 petitions. From among this number were selected the congressionally mandated limit of 65,000 regular cap H-1B petitions, and an...more

H-1B Cap FY2017 and Aftermath

The USCIS received over 236,000 H-1B petitions during this year’s FY2017 filing period for the annual supply of 85,000 new H-1B visas (65,000 for regular cap plus an additional 20,000 for workers with a U.S. Master’s degree)....more

DHS Increases Period of STEM Optional Practical Training to 24 months: Imposes Additional Requirements on Employers and F-1...

The U.S. government never gives without getting something in return, and the same is true with the new STEM 24-month, Optional Practical Training (OPT) Program. On March 11, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published...more

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 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

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