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Jan 19, 2018

The Weekly Round-Up: H-1B Visa Applications Expected to Surge, DACA Fight Continues Potentially Forcing Government Shutdown, and States and Federal Government at Odds Over Immigration Enforcement

H-1B Visas

The number of applications for H-1B visas – reserved for foreign professionals seeking to work in skilled positions in the United States – is expected to rise this year, and employers need to prepare accordingly.

The law caps the number of available visas at 85,000 (with 20,000 reserved for those with a master’s degree), and the 85,000 recipients are chosen at random through a lottery system. … Read More

Jan 15, 2018

Is DACA Really Back? Yes, DACA is Back! Immediate Action is Necessary to Preserve DACA Privileges. 

Following last week’s temporary federal court order stopping the Trump Administration from ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) pending the outcome of the underlying litigation, United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that the DACA program “will be operated on the terms in place before it was rescinded on September 5, 2017,” until further notice.  This means: DACA is back…at least for now.… Read More

Dec 08, 2017

Immigration Weekly Round-Up: Immigration Arrests Rise, Senate Bill Ties DACA to Increased Border Enforcement, and Higher Scrutiny for Skilled Labor Visas

Immigration Arrests Increase While Deportations Decrease

On Tuesday, December 5, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released their year-end immigration enforcement numbers.  Immigrations and Customs Enforcement officers made just over 143,000 arrests of noncitizens within the United States, a 25% increase from 2016.  The arrests did not focus solely on those with criminal records, as the arrests of non-criminals nearly doubled from 2016 to 2017, from under 20,000 to approximately 38,000. … Read More

Dec 04, 2017

EB-5 Regional Center Alert: USCIS Annual Certification Submission Deadline Quickly Approaching

The Norris McLaughlin & Marcus Immigration Practice Group reminds all EB-5 Regional Centers that the annual regional center certification submission deadline for 2017 is December 29.

United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) requires all EB-5 Regional Centers to submit a Form I-924A Supplement to Form I-924 at the close of each fiscal year.  The filing serves to demonstrate that the EB-5 Regional Center remains eligible for the regional center designation.  Read More

Nov 21, 2017

Employers: Beware of Form I-9 Email Scam

In a statement released yesterday, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) warned that employers across the United States have been receiving scam emails requesting information from and copies of the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification.  The scam emails have been sent to employers using various email addresses with the sender’s name masked to reflect the name of the DHS’s application support agency, United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS). … Read More

Nov 17, 2017

Immigration Weekly Round-Up: Reconsideration of DACA Applications, Immigration Status in Court, and ICE Enforcement in Disaster Zones

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to Reconsider Delayed DACA Applications

When the Trump Administration announced in September that DACA would be ending, and that the final applications would be accepted no later October 5, 2017, many DACA recipients and their attorneys quickly worked to send out renewal applications.  Recently, the New York Times reported that a little over 100 DACA recipients had mailed their applications well in advance of the October 5 deadline, but their applications had arrived after that date and had been rejected by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. … Read More

Oct 03, 2017

USCIS: H-1B Premium Processing for Certain H-1B Visa Petitions Accepted and Pending Under 2018 Cap Resumes

Following the Administration’s March 2017 halt to premium processing for H1-B Premium Processing services, United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the premium processing halt on certain H-1B petitions would resume again for another group of H-1B petitions:  (1) when the visa petition has been accepted under the Fiscal Year 2018 cap (during the five business days in April of 2017); and (2) is still pending. … Read More

Jul 28, 2017

USCIS: H-1B Premium Processing for Certain Research Organizations, Colleges, Universities, Hospitals, and Other Cap-Exempt Petitioners Resumes

Following the Administration’s March 2017 halt to premium processing for H1-B Premium Processing services, United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that, effective immediately, premium processing would resume for certain petitions that may be exempt from the H-1B annual cap of 65,000 visas each fiscal year.… Read More

Jul 05, 2017

Venezuelan Asylum Applicants in the United States Double Amid Venezuela’s Political and Economic Chaos

Venezuela’s ongoing political turmoil and near economic collapse have caused thousands of Venezuelans to flee to the United States to seek asylum protection.  United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) reported that in the first three months of 2017, 8,301 Venezuelans sought asylum protection in the United States, compared to 3,507 asylum applicants in the same three months of 2016.  Based on those numbered, USCIS projects that this year’s applications will surpass last year’s 18,155 requests, when Venezuela surpassed China as the country with the most US asylum applicants.… Read More

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