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The U.S. State Department has just released the July 2017 Visa Bulletin which is the tenth Visa Bulletin for the FY2017 fiscal year. The headline in the upcoming month’s Visa Bulletin is the significant 33-month retrogression in EB-3 China, the continued cutoff date for EB-1 India and EB-1 China and the notable forward movement in EB-3 India.
In our office, and in the broader H-1B community, we are seeing instances and reports of H-1B petition RFEs aimed at ensuring compliance with the Simeio-line of guidance issued by USCIS in 2015. Specifically, we are seeing RFEs on H-1B petitions (amendments, mostly, but also for extensions) where USCIS is questioning the timeliness or the lack of the H-1B amendment filings. Our office has handled a number of such RFEs and we share our experience and thoughts on how to best handle them.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has issued a memorandum adopting the AAO decision in Matter of A-T-, Inc. and establishing policy guidance which will apply to and bind all USCIS adjudicators. USCIS clarifies that in order to be able to qualify for an H-1B cap exemption based on a U.S. master’s or higher degree, the institution which has awarded such degree must have qualified as a “United States institution of higher education”, or to be accredited, at the time the beneficiary’s degree was earned and not at the time of adjudication […]
Employment-Based Preference Categories. Increased demand across the employment based preferences, including EB-4 and EB-5, has significantly decreased the “otherwise unused numbers” which have traditionally trickled up to EB-1 and potentially down to EB-2. For example, in FY 2016, Special Immigrant Juvenile cases used more than 50% of the entire EB-4 annual limit, thus preventing many of those 5,200 numbers to potentially become available for use by EB-1 applicants. This, together with high EB-1 Worldwide demand, has contributed to a situation where EB-1 India and EB-1 China now have a final action cut-off date, and in […]