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DV-2019 Diversity Visa (Green Card) Lottery Opens October 3, 2017

The Department of State will open the DV-2019 Diversity Visa (a.k.a. “green card”) lottery on Tuesday, October 3, 2017.   The entries for this year’s lottery must be submitted electronically between noon, Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (GMT-4), Tuesday, October 3, 2017, and noon, Eastern Standard Time (EST) (GMT-5), on Tuesday, November 7,  [...]

By | 2017-10-04T11:02:26+00:00 October 4th, 2017|Articles, DOS, News, News Alert|

Premium Processing Reinstated for All H-1B Cases as of October 3

USCIS has just officially confirmed as of today, October 3, 2017, they have reinstated the premium processing service for all types of H-1B petitions.    Petitions filed under the premium processing service are given a response by USCIS within 15 calendar days.  Similarly, pending "regular processing" H-1B petitions can be "upgraded" to premium processing service. [...]

By | 2017-10-03T12:34:49+00:00 September 28th, 2017|Articles, Employers, H-1B, News, News Alert|

Nonimmigrant Status 30/60 Day Rule Amended to Impose Stricter Requirements for “Inconsistent Conduct”

The U.S. Department of State ("DOS") has amended a section of the Field Adjudicators Manual ("FAM") which pertains to government officials' determinations of misrepresentation by applicants and specifically with respect to activities permitted in the U.S. on nonimmigrant visas. 9 FAM 302.9-4(B)(3) has been amended to include a section called "Inconsistent Conduct Within 90 Days [...]

By | 2017-09-21T10:54:40+00:00 September 21st, 2017|Articles, ESTA, F-1, News, News Alert, Travel|

Premium Processing for Pending H-1B Cap Cases Reinstated

USCIS continues to add types of H-1B petitions for which the premium processing service is being reinstated.  On September 18, 2017, USCIS announced that they are reinstating premium processing for pending H-1B cap petitions. Background of the H-1B Premium Processing Service Suspension Effective April 3, 2017, USCIS suspended the premium processing service for all H-1B [...]

By | 2017-09-19T13:34:07+00:00 September 18th, 2017|Articles, Employers, H-1B, News, News Alert|

October 2017 Visa Bulletin – EB-1 and EB-2 ROW Current Again; First Bulletin for New Fiscal Year

The U.S. State Department has just released the October 2017 Visa Bulletin which is the first Visa Bulletin for the FY2018 fiscal year. The headline in the upcoming month’s Visa Bulletin is fact that this is the first bulletin for the new fiscal year.   EB-1 and EB-2 ROW are current again while [...]

By | 2017-09-12T09:31:57+00:00 September 12th, 2017|AC21, Articles, EB-2, EB-3, I-485, News, News Alert, Visa Bulletin|

How to Handle Wage Level I H-1B RFEs?

Our readers and clients who have been involved in the H-1B program over the last few months (and especially those participating in the H-1B cap filing season) must have experienced or at least heard about the Wage Level I requests for evidence (RFE) which have been and continue to be issued by USCIS.   Our [...]

By | 2017-10-06T14:57:54+00:00 September 11th, 2017|Articles, Employers, H-1B, News, News Alert|

Trump Administration to End DACA – What Does That Mean for Employers?

On September 5, 2017, the Trump administration announced that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals ("DACA") program will end. DACA will remain in place until March 5, 2018 and the program will be phased out over the next two years. DACA Revocation Details The Department of Homeland Security ("DHS") has released details and clarifications regarding [...]

By | 2017-09-07T12:16:22+00:00 September 7th, 2017|Articles, DACA, Employers, News, News Alert|

USCIS to Start Requiring In-Person Interviews for Employment I-485 Applications

USCIS has just announced that they are expanding the requirements for interviews to employment-based I-485 adjustment of status applicants. Effective October 1, 2017, USCIS will phase-in interviews for (1) employment-based I-485 adjustment of status applications and (2) refugee/asylee I-730 applications who are in the United States and petitioning to join a principal applicant.   Under [...]

By | 2017-08-28T20:59:16+00:00 August 28th, 2017|Articles, I-485, News, News Alert, USCIS|

Pending I-131 Advance Parole Applications Being Denied Due to International Travel

Our office has recently learned that USCIS is changing their long-standing practice and have started denying Form I-131 Advance Parole applications due to abandonment in cases where the applicant has left the United States while the I-131 Advance Parole application was pending.      USCIS has confirmed that this is their actual current policy going [...]

By | 2017-08-24T10:03:36+00:00 August 24th, 2017|AOS, Articles, I-131, I-485, News, News Alert, Travel|

Nonimmigrant Visa Services Suspended at US Consulates in Russia

The U.S. Embassy in Russia has announced that starting August 23, 2017, all nonimmigrant visa (NIV) operations across Russia will be suspended. Beginning September 1, 2017, nonimmigrant visa interviews will be conducted only at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow and interviews at the St. Petersburg, Yekaterininburg and Vladivostok will be cancelled. What is the Reason [...]

By | 2017-08-23T13:14:35+00:00 August 23rd, 2017|Articles, News, News Alert, Students, Travel, Visa Processing|