News & Analysis as of

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

New 24-Month F-1 STEM OPT Extension Rule Now Effective; Employers Required to Implement Training Plan for Eligible F-1 STEM OPT...

The long-awaited final rule on the F-1 STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math education) Optional Practical Training (OPT) Extension, authorizing a new 24-month STEM extension for qualified foreign students, took...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

Immigration Laws Stifle US Business

US immigration laws have not been created with the growing global economy’s need for foreign talent in mind, and should be reformed to promote hiring the best minds for the US economy. With globalization of the modern...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

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 2

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 second post will focus on the expansion of the...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 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

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

Information about H-1B Filings FY2017

The H-1B “cap” petition filing deadline is quickly approaching. As a reminder, this is the national deadline for submitted petitions to sponsor workers in “specialty occupations” for those positions that are subject to the...more

STEM OPT Period Extended to Three Years

Department of Homeland Security has issued a final rule, effective May 10, 2016, allowing foreign students with science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) degrees to extend their optional practical training or "OPT"...more

New STEM OPT Extension Rule Brings Welcomed Relief to Employers and International Students

On March 9, 2016, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released an advance copy of the final rule pertaining to optional practical training (OPT) for certain students with degrees in science, technology, engineering, or...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

Breaking Immigration News: F-1 OPT STEM Decision Extended Until May 10, 2016; Gives DHS Additional Time to Implement Final Rule

On January 23, 2016, Judge Huvelle of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia granted a motion to extend the current stay of her prior order which will allow the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to utilize...more

Good News for F-1 International Students: STEM OPT Authorization Allowed Beyond February 12

Federal court rules to allow limited relief of court’s order to May 10, 2016. On January 23, Federal Court Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle granted a request by the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to delay the possible...more

Immigration Law Updates - January 5, 2016

Following are recent and/or anticipated changes to United States immigration laws, which may impact our clients: Proposed Changes to the Visa Waiver Program Following Terror Concerns - In the aftermath of the Paris...more

F-1 Optional Practical Training Proposed Rule Released; Work Authorization Expanded for STEM Students

The long-awaited proposed rule on F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT) was published in the Federal Register on October 19, 2015, by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The proposed rule is titled “Improving and...more

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