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    Published on 08-13-2018 02:21 PM

    PERM Book Practice Tip - Maintenance of Status in PERM Cases


    Before beginning a PERM case, an employer must always check the immigration history of the foreign national to confirm that he or she is eligible to receive permanent ...

    Published on 08-13-2018 11:22 AM

    When’s the best time to file the I-129F petition?


    Believe or not, there are differences between how many I-129F petitions are filed throughout the year. The USCIS actually receives more Fiance(e) K1 visa petitions in the summer than the winter months. In fact, more than 10% higher on average.

    There are also variations of the amount of petitions approved during the year. Normally, the USCIS approves more petitions in the winter than summer months.Notice this means more approvals happen, not necessarily that it’s easier to get approved.

    Here’s a look at what this means for those engaged couples looking to get their petitions over with fast.

    The USCIS gives data about petitions

    The USCIS publishes statistics on immigration petitions and approval .

    uscis statistics 3

    Statistics are listed for petitions and approvals of all types of visas. The K-1 fiance(e) I-129F is included. For every year it shows how many cases are received, approved, denied, pending, etc.

    First off, I was very concerned to see that only 80% of I-129F petitions received are approved in 2018. Read about

    Published on 08-10-2018 01:47 PM

    California Can Revive the Immigrant Worker Protection Act by Challenging the Authority of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ “FDNS” Enforcement Officers


    The State of California won and lost bigly last July 4th. But what if the state’s biggest loss could be salvaged because the primary federal immigration enforcement agency performing worksite visits – the Fraud Detection and National Security Directorate (FDNS) in U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) – has never been lawfully authorized to conduct such investigations?

    Three Clear Victories for California

    In the wins column, as I recently reported , Federal Judge John A. Mendez in U.S. v. California refused to enjoin two California laws and part of another — all enacted by the state to inhibit cooperation with U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions and the Justice Department in their mission to apprehend and deport thousands of undocumented California residents.

    Still in full force and effect are:

    Senate Bill (SB) 54 , which prohibits California law enforcement authorities from sharing with federal immigration authorities a wide variety of information on all but the most dangerous or felonious noncitizens in state custody (including the detainee’s release date), and

    AB 103 which directs the California Attorney General to review county, local, or private locked detention facilities housing noncitizens who are held within the state for civil violations of federal immigration laws, and report on the conditions of confinement at each facility, the due process and care accorded to detainees, and the circumstances leading to their apprehension and placement in the facility to the California legislature, Governor and the public by March 1, 2019.

    Part of AB 450 , the “Immigrant Worker Protection Act” (IWPA), also escaped the federal court’s preliminary injunction, viz., those involving required employee-notification provisions. IWPA requires employers served with a Notice of Inspection (NOI) of Forms I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verifications):

    (A) to disclose in writing, within 72 hours, to each current employee at the worksite and any labor union representing members there that U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) will be conducting I-9 inspection, and

    (B) to follow-up any affected employee or authorized union rep – also within 72 hours of receiving any subsequent immigration enforcement agent’s notices – “of the obligations of the employer and the affected employee arising from the results of the inspection of I-9 . . . forms or other employment records”

    A Partial California Loss?

    California appeared, however, to have suffered bigly with the Federal Court’s preliminary injunction barring much of IWPA. The temporarily stricken portions reflect the state’s attempt to make California workplaces mandatory safe zones, free of federal immigration intrusions, except where judicial warrants authorize entry to nonpublic worksite areas, or judicial or administrative subpoenas mandate access to employee records.

    Unless the injunction is lifted, IWPA may no longer operate to bar employers in California from:

    • reverifying the employment eligibility of any current employee (unless required by federal law); and
    • voluntarily (a) granting immigration enforcement agents entry to any non-public areas of a worksite (unless the agents present a judicial warrant), or (b) allowing the agents to access, review, or obtain any employee records (unless the agents present an NOI, an administrative or judicial subpoena, or a judicial warrant requiring compliance)(the no-voluntary-access provisions).

    Practical Effects on Employers in California. In real-world practice, however, IWPA’s enjoined sections have had little impact on federal immigration enforcement activities – except for one immigration enforcement agency, FDNS, whose unlawful provenance and frequent misbehavior have been little reported.

    IWPA’s Reverification Ban. The ban on employer reverification of a current employee’s right to work in the U.S. could never have operated as the state intended because the exception (unless required by federal law) always

    Federal Law Requires Reverification. The only practical and ...

    Published on 08-09-2018 10:40 AM

    Facing the Fear of Deportation


    Published on 08-09-2018 10:25 AM

    7 New Things to Know about EB-5 Visa Waiting Lines (Chinese, Vietnamese and Korean Translation)


    On April 23, 2018, Mr. Charlie Oppenheim, Chief, Immigrant Visa Control and Reporting, Department of State (“DOS”) spoke at an EB-5 Industry Conference regarding visa waiting lines for EB-5 investors. He indicated that applicants chargeable to mainland China and Vietnam now face visa backlogs for the foreseeable future, and that visa backlogs for nationals of India, Brazil, South Korea, and Taiwan are expected by the summer of 2019.

    Mr. Oppenheim’s estimates, as he always carefully indicates, are based on the “best available information.” He also bases his estimates on “known facts” and not what could happen in the future. When predicting beyond what is clearly visible, Mr. Oppenheim cannot and does not speculate based on legislative, administrative, or other factors and variables which often impact the waiting lines. For this reason, Mr. Oppenheim ...

    Published on 08-08-2018 10:09 AM

    New Study Finds Taking In Refugees Strengthens U.s. At Home And Abroad


    In June, about 3,000 children and family members joined a class action lawsuit against the Trump administration over the “ highly erratic and unexplained termination ” of a special program that offered them conditional status in the United States. The plaintiffs all received conditional approval for the now-defunct Central American Minors (CAM) program, which offered a lifeline to certain Central American minors with lawfully-present parents in the United States. The program was launched in 2014 as a way to stem the rising flow of unaccompanied children at the Southwestern border who were seeking asylum.

    As solutions to the issue of Central American migration and asylum continue to vex onlookers, thoughtful lawmakers ought to re-examine the CAM program as a narrow ...

    Published on 08-08-2018 09:56 AM

    Brown Around Town: Moving the Goal Posts


    Published on 08-07-2018 11:22 AM

    Greentarget Survey: Content Curation is the Key to Law Firm Marketing


    Despite the media facing both financial and political headwinds, most C-suite executives find traditional media more valuable than social media, according to a study from agency Greentarget released this week.

    "I think curation is key," John Corey, founding partner of Greentarget said. "[They are saying] ‘I'm trusting ...

    Published on 08-06-2018 03:16 PM

    Introduction to EB-5 for Indian Nationals: Steps of the EB-5 Process


    As detailed in our podcasts as well as articles and blogs written by Karuna Chandani-Simbeck and Ron Klasko , with a 10+ year visa backlog for China EB-5 and the resulting slow-down of EB-5 investors from China, Regional Centers and Developers have considered India the new EB-5 frontier over the past few years. Although this was initially met with lukewarm interest and heavy skepticism by the Indian community, recent changes ...

    Published on 08-03-2018 02:29 PM

    I-9 Inspections Surging – What Employers Need to Know


    U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) unit announced this week that it has served over 2,700 Notice of Inspection (NOI) to U.S. employers in a five day span from July 16 to July 20, 2018. HSI has indicated its commitment to increase the number of I-9 inspections in the future “in an effort to create a culture of compliance among employers.”

    A NOI informs business owners that HSI will be auditing their hiring records (I-9s) to determine whether they are complying with existing U.S. immigration laws. After receiving a NOI, U.S. employers ...

    Published on 08-02-2018 10:24 AM

    Specialty Occupation and Wage Level H1B RFE Assistance


    Last year, the Level 1 Wages RFE shocked computer programmers and their employers and lawyers. This year, we're seeing RFEs that effect beneficiaries of all wage levels, and this tends to be combined with questions about the specialization of the job in question.

    Here's how it works: if the wage is set at a level CIS feels does not meet the H1B job, they will ...

    Published on 08-01-2018 10:21 AM

    Interpol Red Notices and the Deportation of Mexican and Central American Nationals


    The purpose of this paper is to examine the Interpol Red Notice process and its potential for abuse by Mexican and Central American authorities under the influence of drug cartels or gangs. There is evidence that cartels and gangs have used the Interpol Red Notice system to falsely arrest persons of interest in the United States, ultimately having them removed by the U.S. immigration system back to their country of origin. Once repatriated, these person become targets of retribution by cartels and gangs. The abuse of the Red Notices system has been highlighted recently in the cases of Azerbaijan, China, Russia, Turkey and Venezuela—all authoritarian or quasi-authoritarian governments who use the Interpol system to punish political dissidents. Less noted or discussed are these Central American and Mexican cases where the law enforcement arm has been infiltrated by transnational criminal organizations (TCO) such as cartels and gangs. Here the abuse of the Red Notice system is as much a concern as in China or Russia. ...

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