Immigration Blog

Ongoing Instability for International Students

For the first time in many, many years, the number of international students and scholars at US universities declined. This decline is attributed to various factors. Uncertainty about visa policies. Instability about OPT and CPT options. And yes, the United States being a less welcoming place to foreign students under the Trump presidency. Many new immigration policies make it difficult to recruit talented students and scholars to American campuses. This is also impacting US employers’ […]

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Want to Know What to Expect for Your H-1Bs in 2019?

A reversed lottery. Massive registration pre-filing. Visas for the highest paid. Be aware! The Department of Homeland Security’s latest regulatory agenda includes some big potential changes for H-1B visas. And they didn’t stop with those mentioned above. There may be changes to work authorization for certain spouses. New definitions for “specialty occupation” and other key terms. Restricted access to court. And more! The lottery may no longer be random. And we don’t know what it […]

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Expect More Form I-9 Audits: Are You Ready?

A client who received an ICE visit recently said to me, “Giselle, I don’t want to see them here again. How can we best prepare?” As promised in October of 2017, throughout this year employers have experienced a ramping up of I-9 audits and ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) visits. These audits have been carried out against employers both large and small. ICE has stated that it wants employers to expect I-9 audits to be […]

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An Arbitrary, Capricious, and Unlawful H-1B Extension Denial

Despite significant evidence that an Assistant Project Manager was a specialty occupation which required at a minimum a bachelor’s degree and sophisticated knowledge of construction systems, advanced project scheduling, cost estimation and analysis, information systems, and supply chain management, USCIS arbitrarily and unlawfully denied an employer’s H-1B extension petition. The employer is a major commercial construction company attempting to maintain its US-based workforce to continue to deliver projects of vital importance in the transportation, health, […]

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Green Card EB-1 Filing Backlogged until October 2018 – and Beyond

The Department of State (DOS) recently announced that it reached the cap for green card filings in the EB-1 category, which affects all extraordinary ability workers, including managers, executives, athletes, and researchers. This backlog for EB-1 visas is expected to continue beyond October 2018 (the beginning of the new fiscal year) and potentially into 2019. As a result, it is possible that new applications for permanent resident status will no longer be accepted for EB-1 […]

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Suspension of H-1B Premium Processing Extended and Increased Fee

As we approach October 1 – the date when adjudication of H-1B cap petitions should have been completed – USCIS announced it is extending the suspension of premium processing for H-1B cap petitions until Feb. 19, 2019. It is also expanding the suspension to include most H-1B petitions and raising the premium processing fee for all Forms I-129 and Forms I-140. The fee will increase from $1,225 to $1,410. These unparalleled changes are affecting US […]

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