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Tag: Nonimmigrant Visa Services

Nonimmigrant Visa Services
November 2019 Visa Bulletin Released
October 23, 2019

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) released the November 2019 Visa Bulletin. All employment-based categories see little to no movement for the month of November. The cut-off date for the EB-2 category for persons born in China has advanced since October 2019 but has continued to remain retrogressed since July 2019. The cut-off ...

CEOs and Deans From Top Business Schools Urge President Trump and Congress to Reform U.S. Immigration System
October 23, 2019

On October 15, CEOs and Deans from the top business schools in the country wrote a letter addressed to the President and members of Congress, asking them to reform the U.S. Immigration system to meet the country’s need for highly skilled employees in the STEM field. The ...

Update: Courts Block Public Charge Rule
October 14, 2019

On Friday, three federal courts in California, New York, and Washington issued judgments that will block the implementation of the Trump Administration's public charge rule. As previously reported, the rule was to go in to effect on Tuesday, October 15. The public charge rule would evaluate ...

USCIS Public Charge Rule to go Into Effect on October 15
October 9, 2019

USCIS has announced that, as a result of the Department of Homeland Security’s Public Charge rule, several forms for applications of immigration benefits, including form I-485 applications for adjustment of status and form I-129 petitions for nonimmigrant workers, will be updated as of October 15. USCIS will ...

Report from the H4 EAD Oral Arguments in the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit
September 27, 2019

Today, the US Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit heard arguments for Save Jobs USA v. the Department of Homeland Security. Originating in the US District Court in DC, Judge Tatel (Clinton appointee) heard the case with Judge Griffin (Bush) and Senior Judge Silberman (Reagan). The ...

Insight From the Department of Homeland Security Regarding the Future of the H-4 EAD Program
September 25, 2019

In a letter to a U.S. Court of Appeals on September 16, the Department of Homeland Security indicated that the earliest possible publication date for a proposed rule to rescind H-4 employment authorization would be in Spring 2020. Until such a time that a new rule goes ...

October 2019 Visa Bulletin Released
September 18, 2019

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) released the October 2019 Visa Bulletin. EB-2 and EB-3 categories for the worldwide quota have become current once again. Cut-off dates for the EB-2 and EB-3 categories for persons born in China have remained retrogressed since July 2019. For persons ...

Department of Homeland Security Proposes Expansion of Social Media Disclosure Requirements
September 11, 2019

On September 4, 2019, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a proposal to collect social media user identifications in order to “assess an alien’s eligibility to travel to or be admitted to the United States or to receive an immigration-related benefit from DHS.” This change would ...

USCIS Proposed a $10 Fee for H-1B Visa Applications
September 3, 2019

In a new Department of Homeland Security proposal released on September 3, employers who are applying for H-1B visas in next year's lottery would be required to pay an additional $10. This fee would go toward the electronic preregistration process used for the lottery. The fee ...

USCIS Confirms all Notices for FY 2020 H-1B Cap Petitions Have Been Issued
August 28, 2019

On August 15, 2019, USCIS announced that it has issued return notices for all H-1B Cap Petitions that were not selected in the FY 2020 lottery. The lottery for successful H-1B Cap Petitions was completed by May 17, 2019, and USCIS has since taken steps to ...

September 2019 Visa Bulletin Released
August 20, 2019

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) released the September 2019 Visa Bulletin. Several Employment-Based preference categories have retrogressed or have become unavailable for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2019. For EB-1 categories, cut-off dates have advanced for persons born in Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, the Philippines, Vietnam, ...

Immigration, Trade, and Commerce Organizations Petition USCIS for Greater Review of Proposed H-1B Registration System
August 20, 2019

Last fall, USCIS announced that changes would be forthcoming for the H-1B program, as soon as this year. The new plan would require companies who seek an H-1B visa for a foreign worker to first submit a free online registration form instead of an initial ...

UPDATE: USCIS to Close its Overseas Offices
August 14, 2019

In March 2019, USCIS announced its plan to close all of its overseas offices.However, on August 9, 2019, USCIS updated its plans and announced thatseven of the international offices will remain open. The field offices in Monterrey, Mexico and Seoul, South Korea will be the first ...

U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia Clarifies H-1B Degree Requirement
August 14, 2019

On August 6, 2019, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that USCIS acted arbitrarily, capriciously, and abused its discretion in denying an H-1B work visa to a Data Analyst on the grounds that Data Analysts do not require a bachelor’s degree in ...

Trump Administration Introduces Final “Public Charge” Rule
August 12, 2019

On Monday, August 12, the Trump Administration said it would move forward with new regulations that would deny green cards and visas to immigrants who use or are expected to use a wide range of government benefits, including food stamps, housing vouchers, and Medicaid. This ...

USCIS Annouces Significant Changes to the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program
July 24, 2019

On Wednesday, July 24, USCIS announced significant changes that would be forthcoming for the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. From USCIS, the new rule would include the following: Raising the minimum investment amounts from $1 million to $1.8 million, with an automatic adjustment for inflation every ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 first. Under the new rules, ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

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. ...

Premium Processing for Remaining FY2020 H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions to Begin on June 10, 2019
June 7, 2019

Update: At 3:24 pm EST on June 7, 2019, the USCIS announced that premium processing for all remaining FY2020 H-1B cap-subject petitions will begin on June 10, 2019. This commences phase two of the two-phase approach offered by USCIS in an effort to best manage premium processing ...