Immigration Blog

Insight, News, and Strategy on Immigration Matters Around the World

The uncertainty regarding the rescission of the H-4 EAD Rule continues to drag on and the plaintiffs in Save Jobs USA v. United States Department of Homeland Security are getting tired of waiting. Save Jobs, a group of technology workers who claim to have been displaced by foreign nationals, initially challenged the H-4 EAD Rule in 2015 after it was instituted by the Obama Administration. The H-4 EAD Rule provides work authorization for spouses of…
While I-9 compliance is important, companies cannot forget about other labor and employment laws. In May 2018, a meatpacking company in Illinois was caught between ICE and the National Labor Relations Board. ICE conducted an audit of the company’s I-9s. Upon notice of the audit, the company began implementing E-Verify. An NLRB judge ruled that the company violated the National Labor Relations Act by: Transferring work to temporary staffing agency workers without first notifying the…
Beginning September 11, 2018, USCIS immigration officers will have more discretion to issue petition and application denials without first issuing Requests for Evidence (RFEs) or Notices of Intent to Deny (NOIDs). On September 6, 2018, the Ombudsman’s Office provided further details on the new policy change. The following was noted: The new policy takes effect on September 11, 2018, and will apply to applications received by USCIS on or after September 12, 2018. Adjudicators have full…
On October 1, 2018 the premium processing fee for all Forms I-129 (Non-Immigrant Worker) and Forms I-140 (Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker) will be raised from $1,225 to $1,410.  USCIS announced this almost 15% increase on August 31, 2018. According to USCIS, this is the first adjustment in premium processing fees since 2010.  The agency noted that there has been a significant increase in demand for premium processing and that this has hindered its ability…
While the hope was that the temporary suspension of premium processing for cap-subject H-1B petitions would end on September 11, 2018, USCIS announced on August 28, 2018, that the suspension will continue and be expanded to include other H-1B petitions. As of September 11, 2018, the suspension will apply to the following H-1B petitions: All H-1B petitions filed at the Vermont and California Service Centers. Any H-1B petitions filed with premium processing before September 11,…
The Trump Administration is continuing its assault on outsourcing and staffing firms. The latest Administration focus is on the STEM OPT program. In April 2018, without notice, USCIS made certain changes to its website. It declared, among other things, that a STEM OPT employer “may not assign, or otherwise delegate, its training responsibilities to a non-employer third party (e.g., a client/customer of the employer, employees of the client/customer, or contractors of the client/customer).”  The surprise…
Temporary Protected Status (TPS) may be an endangered species.  Having terminated TPS for Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone during the past year, the Trump Administration has turned its attention elsewhere.  There are currently ten remaining countries whose citizens are eligible for TPS.  Of those, six will be terminated over the next 18 months. The Trump Administration has announced the termination of TPS status for Haiti, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Nepal, Honduras and…
The IRS is reminding taxpayers to pay their taxes or face possible loss of their U.S. passports. In partnership with the IRS, the Department of State (DOS) may deny passport applications, renewals, or even revoke passports of individuals with “seriously delinquent tax debts.” This is based on a section of an infrastructure bill, the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, signed into law in 2015. The IRS began sending certifications of unpaid taxes to
ICE enforcement continues to hit record highs. The Agency has announced that it has served more than 5,200 I-9 audit notices to business owners across the country since January 2018. This was accomplished in two phases. From January to March, 2,540 notices were served, leading to 61 arrests. Then, in the five-day period from July 16 to July 20, 2,738 notices were served and 32 arrests were made. Overall, since the beginning of the fiscal…
USCIS will be issuing Notices of Continued Evidence of Work Authorization for certain Haitian TPS beneficiaries who applied for new EADs, but still have not received them. In November 2017, DHS announced that Haitian Temporary Protected Status would terminate on July 22, 2019. At that time, individuals with TPS EADs that expired on January 22, 2018, were entitled to automatic extensions of their EADs for 180 days until July 21, 2018. Haitian TPS beneficiaries with…