Posts in Business Immigration.
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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State in collaboration with US Citizenship and Immigration Services.  The Bulletin is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the May Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates. (Spoiler alert: there are no changes from April.)

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the April Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the March Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the February Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the November Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the September Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 2 Minute Read

Starting in 2024, US citizens traveling to 30 European countries (most of western Europe except for the UK, see list below), will need to get pre-approval from the EU authorities before traveling.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the June Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes (or not) from the previous month.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the April Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the March Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes (or not) from the previous month. 

Time 3 Minute Read

Seasoned business immigration attorneys recall “visa revalidation” with great fondness.  It is hard to imagine now, with visa appointment backlogs of months and even years at U.S. consulates all over the world, but it was once possible to send a passport to the Department of State’s Revalidation Division in St. Louis, Missouri, along with a few simple supporting documents, and within 10 to 12 weeks, get the passport back with a renewed visa in it.  Those were the days!

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If Punxsutawney Phil checks the Visa Bulletin on Groundhog Day next month, he’s likely to scurry back into his hole from sheer boredom.

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the December Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.  

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

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UPDATE – Phase 3 of Stage 1 will begin on August 1, 2022 and include pending I-140 petitions in the EB-1C Multinational Executive/Manager category that were filed with USCIS on or before July 1, 2021 and pending I-140 petitions in the EB-2 National Interest Waiver (NIW) category that were filed with USCIS on or before August 1, 2021

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Stage 1 of USCIS’s previously announced Premium Processing Expansion program is set to begin on June 1, 2022. Stage 1 will focus on I-140 petitions and will be rolled out in phases, with only long-pending cases eligible to upgrade to premium processing in the coming months. 

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the March Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

China:  EB-1 remains current; EB-2 freezes at March 1, 2019; and EB-3 remains stalled at March 22, 2018

India:   EB-1 remains current; EB-2 moves forward four months to May 1, 2013; and EB-3 remains frozen at January 15, 2012.

All Other Countries:  ...

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 5 Minute Read

On November 12, 2021, in settling a federal lawsuit pending since March, US Citizenship & Immigration Services agreed to two significant changes that will have a major impact on the lives of nonimmigrant workers and their families in the US.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the September Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the August Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the July Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

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We are pleased to announce that the Labor and Employment team at Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP has been recognized as practice leaders in Immigration and Labor and Employment Disputes (Including Collective Actions): Defense by The Legal 500. Fourteen individual lawyers on HuntonAK’s Labor and Employment and Immigration Team also were acknowledged.

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HuntonAK’s Labor and Employment practice has been recognized as leaders by Chambers USA 2021 rankings. Chambers USA ranks leading firms and lawyers in an extensive range of practice areas throughout America. The research is in-depth, and client-focused and the guide is read by industry-leading companies and organizations throughout the US and worldwide.

Read the full post on the Hunton Employment & Labor Perspectives blog.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the June Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the April Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 2 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the February Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 2 Minute Read

In a move reflective of the agency’s current approach to rulemaking and policy changes, US Citizenship and Immigration Services has provided less than one business day’s notice that it is almost doubling the popular “premium processing” fee that allows US employers to receive decisions on their petitions to sponsor foreign workers in a matter of days, instead of waiting the many months these petitions currently take to be processed at USCIS without the premium fee.

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UPDATE - In October, USCIS will accept I-485 applications based on the Department of State’s more favorable Dates for Filing chart. If the applicant’s priority date is before the date listed in the Dates for Filing chart for the applicable preference category and country of birth, an I-485 application can be filed.  However, the case will not be adjudicated until the applicant’s priority date is current based on the Final Action Dates chart.

Time 3 Minute Read

In the 10 weeks since we last wrote about international travel, some countries have moved to allow more fluid international travel.  For example, the United Kingdom has introduced a set of quarantine exceptions and the United States clarified who is eligible for exemptions to the Presidential Proclamations limiting visa issuance and travel.

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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

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Foreign nationals are experiencing delays of more than a month in receiving approved work permits and green cards that are normally issued and mailed within days of approval.  Applicants are also experiencing extended delays in the time it takes USCIS to adjudicate these applications.  These delays have a major impact on foreign nationals and their US employers.

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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

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As we explained on May 4 and March 12, the Department of Homeland Security has relaxed normal in-person verification requirements for Form I-9 during the pandemic.

Time 7 Minute Read

UPDATES as of July 1, 2020:  Please see our new piece, Entry Ban Update, for additional information that has become available about how the proclamation is being enforced for Canadians, visa renewals, and exceptions.


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We last wrote about international travel during COVID-19 in March, with a general overview and a separate article about travel in North America.  Since then, many changes have occurred (for example, those traveling to Canada and the United Kingdom must now quarantine for 14 days after arrival), while other elements of travel have remained the same (U.S. consulates around the world remain closed). As of June 18, 2020, countries are continuing to respond with travel warnings, travel restrictions, health screenings, quarantines, and extensions of immigration status for affected ...

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We are pleased to announce that the Labor and Employment team at Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP has been recognized as practice leaders in Immigration and Labor and Employment Disputes (Including Collective Actions): Defense by The Legal 500. Eleven individual lawyers on HuntonAK’s Labor and Employment and Immigration Team also were acknowledged.

Continue Reading

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Time 8 Minute Read

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, US immigration agencies have continued offering minor, but welcome, accommodations to individuals affected by COVID-19 who rely on immigration programs. While there are no groundbreaking changes, here is a roundup of the most notable changes in the last two months.

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After suspending all “premium processing” for more than two months during the COVID-19 pandemic, USCIS today announced it will again accept premium fees (currently, $1,440 per form) and requests for expedited adjudication (currently, 15 calendar days) for Forms I-129 (Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker) and I‑140 (Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker).

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On May 24, 2020, the White House added Brazil to the list of countries triggering denial of admission to the US if travelers have been physically present in those countries for the preceding 14 days.  The presidential action cited “widespread, ongoing person-to-person transmission of SARS-CoV-2” as the reason for the ban, listing the WHO’s ranking of Brazil with the “third highest number of confirmed cases in the world.”

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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

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On March 12, we recommended that employers designate authorized representatives to complete and reverify Forms I-9 in person during COVID-19 closures and furloughs.  On March 24, we updated our guidance in detail because, in response to COVID-19, USCIS began allowing employers and employees to complete Forms I-9 remotely.  The agency has now further relaxed I-9 verification requirements.

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Since 1990, the United States has granted up to 50,000 green cards each year to immigrants selected through the “Diversity Visa Lottery.”  Recently, the US Department of State announced delays in processing these cases due to COVID-19.  This development further exacerbates challenges caused by COVID-19, including the temporary suspension of visa appointments and USCIS in-person services, which we reported on last month, and the April 22 Executive Order halting immigrant visa admissions for 60 days.  See our analysis of the Order here.

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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the May Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

China: EB-1 advances five weeks to July 15, 2017; EB-2 moves ahead one month to October 1 2015; and EB-3 advances one month to May 15, 2016

India: EB-1 jumps ahead three months to August 1, 2015; EB-2 continues to creep forward, advancing eight days ...

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On the night of Monday, April 20, 2020, the President tweeted that he would “protect” American jobs during the COVID-19 crisis by issuing an Executive Order that would “temporarily suspend immigration.”  After several uncertain days of conflicting information, reported in the media, about how sweeping the scope of the order would be, it turns out to affect a very small subset of intending US immigrants:  those who are outside the United States and will immigrate here by obtaining an immigrant visa.

On April 22, 2020, the White House issued the order, entitled “Proclamation ...

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On March 23, 2020, we wrote about the impact of the global pandemic on travel between the United States and neighboring countries, in COVID-19: How Does the Outbreak Affect Travel Between the United States and Mexico or Canada?  We explained that the US, Mexican and Canadian governments had agreed to close their contiguous borders between March 20 and April 20, 2020, and then reassess whether borders should be reopened depending on the progress of the pandemic.

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On March 30, 2020, we wrote about “satisfactory departure” in COVID-19:  How Does the Outbreak Affect Visa Waiver (ESTA) Travelers?  As we explained, visitors to the US who arrive under the Visa Waiver program who cannot depart within 90 days due to the pandemic may request a 30-day “satisfactory departure” period from US Customs & Border Protection by email.

On April 13, 2020, US Citizenship & Immigration Services announced it would begin taking requests for satisfactory departure by phone while its local field offices remain closed during COVID-19.  Visa Waiver travelers ...

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Unemployment insurance, as described in a recent blog post by our Labor and Employment colleagues, is a “joint federal-state program, administered separately by each state following guidelines established by federal law.”  While the requirements of these programs vary from state to state, eligibility criteria generally exclude nonimmigrants whose work authorization is tied to a specific position with a specific employer (e.g., TN, H-1B, and L-1 workers).

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The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted travel across the globe.  Many US travelers who entered under the Visa Waiver Program (commonly called “ESTA,” the acronym for the online pre‑authorization system) now find themselves on the horns of a dilemma:  leave at the end of their 90-day authorized stay and thus endanger their own health and potentially that of others, or overstay due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

Time 7 Minute Read

In response to the COVID-19 crisis, US authorities are announcing a number of significant changes that impact everyone who relies on immigration programs to operate businesses or to live and work in the United States. Companies and their sponsored employees should be aware of the following changes announced within the past week:

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UPDATE: Law360 posted a version of this article as Expert Analysis on March 31, 2020.

As employers throughout the United States increasingly move to remote work arrangements for employees, they are confronted with challenges in completing Form I-9.  An employer must inspect an employee’s original identity and employment authorization documents in the physical presence of the employee within 3 business days after employment begins.  For remote hires, and for reverification of current employees working remotely, government agencies have relaxed some I-9 requirements and companies are developing temporary procedures to ensure compliance during the COVID-19 crisis.

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UPDATE – Thursday March 20 – Department of State Officially Announces the Suspension of ALL Routine Visa Appointments WORLDWIDE

Effective today, Friday March 20, the US Department of State is suspending routine visa services at all embassies and consulates worldwide. All routine (non-emergency) visa appointments will be cancelled until normal operations resume.  If applicants whose appointments are cancelled have already paid the MRV application fee, that fee will remain valid for a future appointment within one year.

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Employers face many urgent issues in responding to the US outbreak of the novel coronavirus, COVID‑19.  The disease has forced employers to develop and implement workplace safety, mitigation, and business continuity plans.  These may include allowing employees to work from home or from alternate unaffected worksites, as well as outsourcing I-9 document reviews to agents in remote locations. Economic slowdowns have occurred in some sectors due to the global pandemic, requiring some companies to consider or implement temporary employee furloughs or even reductions in force.

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Overview

As of mid-March 2020, countries are responding in various ways to the outbreak of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Concerning immigration and movement of people around the world, these responses generally fall into a few categories, including travel warnings, travel restrictions, health screenings and quarantines, and extensions of immigration status for impacted individuals.

This article addresses the impact of the outbreak on international travel, with specific information from several countries. In a separate article, we addressed how the outbreak affects immigration workplace compliance. All of our COVID-19 articles will be updated as new information becomes available.

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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the March Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

China: EB-1 advances ten days to June 1, 2017; EB-2 jumps ahead one month to August 15, 2015; and EB-3 advances nearly three months to March 22, 2016

India: EB-1 leaps forward two months to March 1, 2015; EB-2 continues to creep forward, advancing ...

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On January 31, 2020, President Trump issued a Presidential Proclamation amending Presidential Proclamation 9723, commonly called the “Travel Ban.”  This new proclamation imposes travel restrictions on certain nationals of countries the administration has determined to have inadequate identity-management practices, national security and public safety information practices, and otherwise pose a national security or public-safety risk.

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the February Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

China: EB-1 stalls at May 22, 2017; EB-2 advances two weeks to July 15, 2015; and EB-3 leaps ahead one month to January 1, 2016

India: EB-1 remains stalled at January 1, 2015; EB-2 creeps forward one day to May 19, 2009; and EB-3 advances one week ...

Time 4 Minute Read

In 2019, the large policy and enforcement shifts signposted in 2017 and 2018 continued to play out with stricter immigration enforcement across the board. While we don’t expect to see seismic shifts in the coming year, there are a few issues to watch for in 2020.

(1) H-1B “Specialty Occupation” Definition Change Likely to Stall in Court

USCIS has indicated it will be announcing an official change to the definition of “specialty occupation.” While we have already seen a detrimental shift in the H-1B adjudication process, this would be an official regulatory change. We expect that any attempt to re-interpret the H-1B statute as narrowly as possible will face a lengthy court battle.

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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the January Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

China: EB-1 moves ahead just one week to May 22, 2017; EB-2 creeps forward eight days to July 1, 2015; and EB-3 advances one month to December 1, 2015

India: EB-1 remains stalled at January 1, 2015; EB-2 crawls ahead three days to May 18, 2009; and ...

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When traveling abroad for business, there are many things to remember – meeting schedules, presentation materials, business cards, dress clothes, etc. While immigration requirements can get lost in the shuffle, immigration documents should be on any business traveler’s pre-trip checklist. Forgetting required documentation can result in experiences that range from slightly inconvenient to potentially disastrous, including:

  • Missed flights;
  • Refusal of entry;
  • Long periods waiting in secondary inspection; and/or
  • Canceled trips.
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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the December Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.  The December Visa Bulletin includes a warning that all employment-based second and third preference categories for all countries could retrogress in January.

China: EB-1 leaps forward three and a half months to May 15, 2017; EB-2 moves ...

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While many of the most common Canadian business immigration options have close US equivalents, there are some options that are uniquely Canadian.

This is intended as informational only. If you have a question about a particular scenario, contact one of our immigration attorneys for guidance.

Francophone Mobility - Mobilité Francophone

To “promote Francophone immigration in Francophone minority communities”, Canada has a special immigration option for French speakers with job offers outside of Quebec. The offered position must be in a managerial, professional ...

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The government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau remains in power following last week’s Canadian federal elections. Despite losing a clear majority, Trudeau’s Liberals are still the largest party in Parliament with enough seats to form a minority government. With what is largely a continuation of the status quo, immigration priorities are likely to remain unchanged, with Canada continuing a policy of encouraging employment-based immigration.

Similar to the US, Canada has entry and work authorization requirements that vary based on several factors including

  • the reason for ...
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Most frequent business travelers and the teams that support them are familiar with the usual immigration options of visas, visa-free business travel, and work permits. These can be frustrating, time consuming, and not always a good fit for schedules or travel purposes. Thankfully for those headed to Asia, many countries have immigration options that lack the issues of more traditional routes.

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During the 2019 Women’s Soccer World Cup, those searching for immigration stories had to look to the sidelines. At the 2019 Rugby World Cup, happening right now in Japan, you find similar stories about itinerant coaches and countries bringing in top coaches from overseas to give them an edge. But at this event, the sidelines are not the only place where interesting immigration tales can be found.

Just look to the stands – and the scrum.

The Stands

When the Women’s Soccer World Cup kicked off in France earlier this year, many teams could expect loyal turnout from France’s large ...

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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the October Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

China: EB-1 advances more than two years to November 1, 2016; EB-2 retrogresses two years to January 1, 2015; and EB-3 advances twenty-two months to November 1, 2015

India: EB-1 returns to January 1, 2015; EB-2 creeps forward four days to May ...

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The UK could leave the EU in 6 weeks, or there may be another delay like the one we saw in April. Brexit watchers have likened the UK to a cat that can’t decide if it wants to be in or out and just sits in the doorway. This has an impact on EU citizens living in the UK who are waiting to see exactly what their status will be post-Brexit. The UK has announced a set of policies that will apply starting on October 31, but much still depends on whether the UK and EU reach a deal. A lot is still up in the air.

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In 2018, the US received approximately 740,000 visitors a week. While that number looks big, when compared to the US population of 372 million, it is relatively small, equal to only .2 percent of the population. In stark contrast, last week Saudi Arabia, a country of about 33 million people, hosted about 140,000 international visitors for the annual Hajj pilgrimage, temporarily increasing its population by 4 percent.

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The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process, or if already pending, when the final step can be adjudicated.

Below is a summary of the September Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

  • China: EB-1 retrogresses more than two years to January 1, 2014; EB-2 stalls at January 1, 2017; and EB-3 falls back more than two years to January 1, 2014
  • India: EB-1 becomes unavailable for the first time ever (excluding the aftermath of the visa fiasco of August 2007); EB-2 creeps forward six days to May 8, 2009; and EB-3 falls back six months to July 1, 2005
  • All Other Countries (including the Philippines): EB-1 remains backlogged, but advances over one year to October 1, 2017; EB-2 moves forward one year to January 1, 2018; and EB-3 stalls at July 1, 2016
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On Tuesday, July 30, 2019, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced a settlement agreement with United General Bakery, Inc. based in Phoenix, Arizona. The agreement resolved a DOJ investigation into whether the company discriminated against authorized workers based on their citizenship status when verifying their work authorization in violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

Time 4 Minute Read

In 1985, near the village of Schengen in Luxembourg, five European countries signed an agreement to gradually eliminate border controls between their countries. Since then, the Schengen agreement has become the basis for the elimination of border controls between 26 European countries facilitating the flow of people and goods throughout Europe. Visitors are subject to immigration inspection when entering the Schengen area, but not when traveling between Schengen states.

Time 4 Minute Read

Are you frustrated with the increasing level of documentation required to support employment-based immigration filings? You are not alone.

Gone are the days when a company letter and organizational chart were enough to support an L-1A manager case or just quoting the Occupational Outlook Handbook was enough to demonstrate specialty occupation status for an H-1B petition. US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) now requires pages and pages of supporting evidence for all employment-based filings, including I-129 nonimmigrant petitions for L-1 or H-1B status and I-140 ...

Time 1 Minute Read
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Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process. The complete visa bulletin can be found here.

Below is a summary of the August Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

  • China: EB-1 retrogresses to July 1, 2016; EB-2 advances two months to January 1, 2017; and EB-3 moves forward six months to July 1, 2016
  • India: EB-1 remains stalled at January 1, 2015; EB-2 crawls ahead eight days to May 2, 2009; and EB-3 falls back more than three ...
Time 3 Minute Read

Sunday as the country watched the US women cruise to victory over the Dutch, some immigration lawyers were wondering:

How many of the players are immigrants?

We know soccer teams draw their stars from around the world. For example:

  • the current Manchester United F.C. first-team squad features players from 14 different countries,
  • the current D.C. United MLS team features players from 10 countries, and
  • the Washington Spirit, DC’s local women’s professional team that includes Rose Lavelle who scored a beautiful goal in the World Cup Final, features players from 3 countries.

This ...

Time 3 Minute Read

While TSA pre-check may get you through US security faster, expediting departure, there are also benefits available on the other end of the trip through a variety of other programs that expedite international arrival processes.

Collectively known as Trusted Traveler Programs, most of these programs feature:

  • Fast-track lanes and streamlined entry processes
  • Facial recognition software and other technologies used to screen passengers
  • Eligibility limited to a specific list of nationalities that vary by program
  • A pre-approval process that includes a background check and ...
Time 3 Minute Read

In October 2017, the Department of Homeland Security implemented Trump’s Executive Order, “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry,” by requiring all applicants sponsored for green cards by their employers to be interviewed in person at a US Citizenship & Immigration Services office.  The first batch of interviews were scheduled quickly, but over the last year, wait times have skyrocketed, now reaching 1 to 2 years in large metro areas.  Waits for family-based applicants (who have always been interviewed) have steadily climbed also, as a result of the growing ...

Time 1 Minute Read

The Visa Bulletin is released monthly by the Department of State and is used to determine when a sponsored foreign national can submit the final step of the green card process. The complete visa bulletin can be found here.

Below is a summary of the July Visa Bulletin, including Final Action Dates and changes from the previous month.

  • China: After four months of non-activity, EB-1 leaps forward more than ten weeks to May 8, 2017; EB-2 advances three months to November 1, 2016; and EB-3 jumps ahead three and a half months to January 1, 2016
  • India: EB-1 freezes at January 1, 2015; EB-2 creeps ...
Time 3 Minute Read

With H-1B Cap premium processing winding down, employers will soon start to get back petitions that were not selected in the lottery. Employees who have other statuses, such as F-1 OPT or L-1, can just keep working and their employers can try again next year. For others, however, if the FY2020 cap was their only option until FY2021, employers may need to make other plans. Before you part ways with a stellar nonimmigrant employee, give a thought to global options.

Return Home: Having your employee work remotely from their home country is the easiest option from an immigration perspective ...

Time 3 Minute Read

Now that the Fiscal Year 2020 H-1B cap season is over, it is a good time for an internal review and update of public access files (PAFs).

What is a Public Access File?

U.S. employers who sponsor H-1B employees must make certain records available, on request, to government auditors, members of the public, and the H-1B employee.  The PAF must establish that the employer is paying the higher of: (a) the prevailing wage; or (b) the actual wage paid to other employees in similar positions who have similar qualifications.

Why does PAF compliance matter?

Failure to comply with PAF requirements, if ...

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