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USCIS is the agency charged with administering and providing immigration benefits to foreign nationals.  Naturalization, green cards, work authorization, H-1B visas, asylum, family-based immigration, investment visas, cultural exchange programs, foreign doctors, NAFTA professionals, victims of crimes and domestic violence, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, and many ...

Feature
The Immigration Nerds Talk to AAJC About Influencing Immigration and Advocating to Congress
July 18, 2019

In this week's Immigration Nerds podcast, we talk to Megan Essaheb, the Director of Immigration Advocacy at Asian Americans Advancing Justice. Megan shares AAJC's advocacy and legislative work, including their long-term efforts to introduce and influence policy. She also explains their partnerships and outreach response ...

Alerts
Congress Holds Hearing on USCIS Processing Delays
July 18, 2019

USCIS is the agency charged with administering and providing immigration benefits to foreign nationals.  Naturalization, green cards, work authorization, H-1B visas, asylum, family-based immigration, investment visas, cultural exchange programs, foreign doctors, NAFTA professionals, victims of crimes and domestic violence, Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, and many ...

EIG Dispatch
Russia | Changes to Expand the E-Visa Program Announced
July 17, 2019

Under a draft plan reportedly approved by President Vladimir Putin, Russia plans to expand its e-visa program starting on January 1, 2021. The list of countries whose citizens will be eligible to apply for the e-visa will be confirmed by the government separately. The list most likely will include ...

EIG Dispatch
U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia Issues Opinion that IT Job Ineligible for H-1B
July 17, 2019

On July 15, the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia issued an opinion in the case of Sagarwala vs. Cissna.  Usha Sagarwala, beneficiary of an H-1B petition filed by HSK Technologies, Inc., sued the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) after  USCIS denied the ...

EIG Dispatch
Trump Administration Moves to Limit Asylum Protections
July 17, 2019

On July 15, the Trump Administration published a new rule, Asylum Eligibility and Procedural Modifications, requiring individuals who pass through a third party country seeking to apply for asylum in the U.S. to apply for asylum in that third party country rather. Under the new rules, ...

EIG Dispatch
H.R. 1044 Update: Bill Aims to End Decades-Long Waits for Highly-Skilled Immigrants
July 17, 2019

On July 10th, the House of Representatives passed the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, which intends to eliminate the per-country cap for employment-based green cards. The bill will now be considered by the Senate. If the bill is approved, the first-come, first-served system would give every immigrant ...

Alerts
August 2019 Visa Bulletin
July 16, 2019

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) released the August 2019 Visa Bulletin. Cut-off dates remain effective for the EB-1 categories with retrogression for all locations. The Department of State stated in Section D of the August visa bulletin that due to the increased volume of adjustment of status cases filed, it ...

Feature
Immigration Nerds Talk About Job Seeking Strategies for International Students in the US
July 12, 2019

In this week's Immigration Nerds podcast, we talk to Marcelo Barros, an international student career expert and the founder of the International Advantage. Throughout our conversation, Marcelo shares his insights and the advice he relays to students to help them achieve their professional goals with ...

US News
H-1B Pre-Registration Proposal Moves to Public Comment Period
July 3, 2019

Last fall, the federal government proposed a pre-registration plan that would change and, in theory, streamline the application process for the H-1B visa, of which 85,000 are allocated annually. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration (USCIS) announced in the federal register that the pre-registration plan was moving forward ...

US News
Trump Administration Issues Fines to Individuals in the U.S. Illegally
July 3, 2019

This week, NPR obtained government documents showing that the Trump administration has fined some immigrants who are in the United States illegally, after "failing to depart the U.S. as previously agreed." The Department of Homeland Security sent out notices to targeted individuals with fines up to ...

EIG Dispatch
UK | New Immigration and Borders System
July 2, 2019

The Home Office published details on the new immigration and border system it will likely implement at the beginning of 2021. Some of the proposals include eliminating the annual cap of visas issued for skilled workers and the Resident Labor Market Test for high-skilled workers.  This new ...

EIG Dispatch
Decrease in Processing Times for Naturalization and Green Card
July 2, 2019

On June 17, 2019, USCIS announced that it plans on decreasing processing times for Naturalization and Green Card processing. USCIS plans to distribute Naturalization and Green Card adjudication more evenly among the field offices to address issues caused by the disparate adjudication burden on different field offices ...

EIG Dispatch
USCIS Introduces First Digital FOIA System
July 2, 2019

On June 25, 2019, USCIS announced that it will expand its digital Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Immigration Records System (FIRST) allowing FOIA requesters who have a USCIS online account to submit online requests for their own records. USCIS has indicated that “the FIRST system is the only system ...

EIG Dispatch
House Approves $4.5 Billion in Border Aid
July 2, 2019

The U.S.  House of Representatives passed a bill that will send 4.5 billion dollars in humanitarian aid to crisis-stricken migrants at the border. The aid will fund overcrowded shelter facilities to improve living conditions for women and children who are detained. It will also go toward U.S. ...

Feature
Immigration Nerds Talk to Rachel Levitan of HIAS
June 27, 2019

In this week's Immigration Nerds podcast, we talk to Rachel Levitan the Vice President, International Programs at HIAS. Rachel shares HIAS's history, their efforts to support the current immigrant and refugee experience, and how individuals can help, too.

US News
Acting CBP Commissioner Resigns
June 27, 2019

On Tuesday, the Acting Customs and Border Protection Commissioner John Sanders announced his resignation. His message to agency employees follows a dramatic increase in undocumented migrants crossing the southern border. His resignation is effective July 5. Sanders filled the acting role in the spring following other personnel ...

US News
USCIS Expands Digital FOIA
June 27, 2019

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced they would be expanding the digital Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Immigration Records System (FIRST). The FIRST system allows users to submit and track FOIA requests and receive information digitally. This move is meant to improve efficiency. Individuals with ...

Alerts
Citizenship Question Blocked for Now, SCOTUS Says
June 27, 2019

On Thursday morning, the Supreme Court ruled against adding the citizenship question to the 2020 Census. The majority stated, they "cannot ignore the disconnect between the decision made and the explanation given" by the Trump administration. The proposal to add the citizenship question, "Is this person ...

Global News
A Possible H-1B Cap in Response to Data Rules
June 26, 2019

In advance of U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's visit to New Delhi, there are reports of a possible cap on H-1B visas for nations that force foreign companies to store data locally. Such a restriction would directly impact Indian H-1B applicants to the United ...

Feature
Immigration Nerds Talk About the 2020 Census
June 21, 2019

In this week's Immigration Nerds Podcast, we sit down with EIG attorney Jeremy Dumetz and talk about the hotly debated "citizenship" question the Trump administration is pushing for in the 2020 Census. Jeremy and EIG Media Producer Ian Gaines talk about the history of the ...

EIG Dispatch
Philippines | Tax Identification Number (TIN) is Now Required for All Foreign Nationals Applying for a Work Permit
June 18, 2019

On May 31, 2019, the Philippines Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) released Memorandum Order No. 28-2019, which prescribes the policies and guidelines relevant to the registration requirements of foreign nationals. All foreign nationals working in the Philippines are now required to obtain a tax identification number (TIN) with ...

EIG Dispatch
Mitt Romney Introduces Bill to Make E-Verify Permanent, Still Optional
June 18, 2019

On Wednesday, June 12, Senator Mitt Romney (R-Utah) introduced a bill in the Senate that would make the E-Verify program permanent. E-Verify, the online tool that allows employers to input a new hire’s driver’s license and Social Security information to verify whether the person is eligible to ...

EIG Dispatch
Cyber-attack Hacks Thousands of Travelers’ Images at the Border
June 18, 2019

On May 31, the Customs and Border Protection agency was made aware that up to 100,000 images of travelers and license plates were hacked in a cyber attack. For security purposes, the agency collects and stores personal data of all travelers who cross the US border. Federal ...

EIG in the News
Erickson in the News: Mexicans have a special route to the US job market. Trade wars could close it off
June 17, 2019

Melia Russell | June 16, 2019   As a candidate, Donald Trump began his campaign by attacking Mexicans. Now, some here legally fear they’ll be collateral damage in his trade wars. For a quarter century, skilled Mexican citizens have been able to get three-year work permits under a ...

Alerts
July 2019 Visa Bulletin
June 14, 2019

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) released the July 2019 Visa Bulletin. Cut-off dates remain effective for the EB-1 categories with no movement forward in any of the categories. The Department of State stated in Section G of the July visa bulletin that due to the increased demand, the ...

Feature
Immigration Nerds Talk About the Brexit Summer Calendar
June 14, 2019

In this week's Immigration Nerds podcast, EIG legal writer Kahn T. Branch previews the summer of Brexit.  We discuss Theresa May's resignation and the election of a new prime minister, the deal or no deal Brexit options, and the EU Summit.

Feature
The Challenging Climate for the H-1B Program
June 13, 2019

USCIS is currently being sued in two separate cases over their Notice of Intent to Revoke (NOIR) process and policy. USCIS may revoke a petition if the terms of employment and the original petition differ, in cases of fraud, misrepresentation, or inaccurate information, in cases ...

Alerts
White House Uses Executive Privilege for Census Question Inquiry
June 12, 2019

“Is this person a citizen of the United States?” With the 2020 census looming and the issue of a new question on citizenship to be added, the Trump Administration is blocking Congress' access to background documents about how the new question came to be with executive ...

Alerts
Kenneth Cuccinelli Named as Acting Director of USCIS
June 11, 2019

On Monday, June 10, Department of Homeland Security Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan announced that President Trump named Kenneth Cuccinelli II as Acting Director of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Mr. Cuccinelli assumed the role on the same day. While Cuccinelli has been a strong ...

US News
Government Accountability Office to Investigate USCIS Processing Delays
June 10, 2019

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services' (USCIS) processing delays have been steadily increasing for many years, but the backlog has reached new highs under the Trump Administration. Earlier this year, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) issued a report on the USCIS long-delayed processing times. ...