Robinson Kirlew & Associates, P.C. https://rkalawfirm.com Attorneys At Law Thu, 12 Apr 2018 21:27:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.5 USCIS Completes the H-1B Cap Random Selection Process for FY 2019 https://rkalawfirm.com/uscis-completes-the-h-1b-cap-random-selection-process-for-fy-2019/ Thu, 12 Apr 2018 21:25:04 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1599 The USCIS announced that on  April 11, 2018, a computer-generated random selection process was conducted to select enough H-1B petitions to meet the congressionally-mandated cap and the U.S. advanced degree exemption, known as the master’s cap, for fiscal year (FY) 2019.  Between April 2 and April 6, the USCIS received 190,098 H-1B petitions.  In an announcement on April 6, the USCIS confirmed that it had received enough H-1B petitions to reach the statutory cap of 65,000 and the master’s cap of 20,000. USCIS will reject and return all eligible unselected petitions with their filing fees.

The USCIS conducted the selection process for the master’s cap first and then all unselected master’s cap petitions became part of the random selection process for the 65,000 cap.  Additional information on H1B cap cases is available from the US Citizenship and Immigration Service.

 

 

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Who can sign Immigration forms? https://rkalawfirm.com/1585-2/ Mon, 19 Feb 2018 21:34:51 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1585 The USICS issued a final policy memorandum clarifying who can sign immigration forms.  The February 15, 2018 memo, confirmed that “petitioners and applicants who seek immigration benefits must provide a valid signature on forms submitted.”    The USCIS will no longer accept Power of Attorney signatures.  For applications filed by corporations or other legal entity, they must be signed by an authorized person.  The memo provides a list of individuals authorized to sign on behalf of corporations.

There are limited exceptions to this new regulation such as when the applicant/petitioner is disabled or younger than 14 years of age.

Otherwise, the USCIS will no longer accept forms signed by attorneys or representatives based on a signed G 28 Notice of Entry of Appearance.

 

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Federal Government Shutdown https://rkalawfirm.com/federal-government-shutdown/ Mon, 22 Jan 2018 14:59:20 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1572 The majority of USCIS services will continue to operate during the Federal Government Shutdown. Please be sure to keep your scheduled appointments as all USCIS offices remain open.

From the USCIS “…several USCIS programs will either expire or suspend operations, or be otherwise affected until they receive appropriated funds or are reauthorized by Congress. These include:

  • EB-5 Immigrant Investor Regional Center Program. Regional centers are a public or private economic unit in the United States that promote economic growth. USCIS designates regional centers for participation in the Immigrant Investor Program.
  • E-Verify. This free internet-based system allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States.
  • Conrad 30 J-1 doctors. This program allows J-1 doctors to apply for a waiver of the two-year residence requirement after completing the J-1 exchange visitor program. The expiration only affects the date by which the J-1 doctor must have entered the United States; it is not a shutdown of the Conrad 30 program entirely.
  • Non-minister religious workers. This special immigrant category allows non-ministers in religious vocations and occupations to immigrate or adjust status in the United States to perform religious work in a full-time, compensated position.”

The Department of Labor website is not being updated and icert is not available during the shutdown.  This may preclude the filing of H1B petitions which require a certified Labor Condition Application from the Department of Labor prior to filing.

Although there is no official announcement from EOIR, the Immigration Courts may be affected.   Personnel at the Baltimore and Arlington Immigration Courts have been advised to appear for work but the Court will only be handling hearings for detained respondents.  It is expected that non-detained hearings will not go forward.

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USCIS resumes processing of DACA https://rkalawfirm.com/uscis-resumes-processing-of-daca/ Tue, 16 Jan 2018 18:06:33 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1562 “Due to a federal court order, USCIS has resumed accepting requests to renew a grant of deferred action under DACA.  Until further notice, and unless otherwise provided in this guidance, the DACA policy will be operated on the terms in place before it was rescinded on Sept. 5, 2017. ”  Information on DACA eligibility is available here.

 

 

 

 

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USCIS Resumes H-1B Premium Processing https://rkalawfirm.com/uscis-resumes-h-1b-premium-processing-2/ Mon, 18 Sep 2017 20:47:39 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1511 In a press release issued today, September 18th, 2017, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced effective immediately, it has resumed Premium Processing for certain H-1B Visa Categories for Fiscal Year (FY) 2018.  H1B cases filed on April 1, 2017 with a start date of October 1, 2017 are eligible for Premium processing at this time.

 

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Trump Administration Announces end of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) https://rkalawfirm.com/trump-administration-announces-end-of-deferred-action-for-childhood-arrivals-daca/ Wed, 13 Sep 2017 14:40:12 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1509 On September 5th, 2017 Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that President Trump would end President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Over 800,000 individuals who were brought to the United States as children benefited from this Deferred Action.  During this period of Deferred action, they were granted employment authorization and were eligible to apply for Advance Parole which allowed them to return to the United States after foreign travel.
With this announcement, the following actions will take place.
  • EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY: No new DACA Applications will be accepted or processed by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
  • If you gained status via DACA, your employment authorization will remain valid until its expiration date.
    • This can be found on your I-795 Approval Notice.
  • All work permits or DACA Issuances expiring between (September 5, 2017) and March 5, 2018, MUST be submitted for renewal by October 5, 2017.
  • The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will no longer grant DACA recipients permission to travel abroad through Advance Parole.
  • Pending I-131 Applications for Advance Parole will no longer be processed and any fees associated with this application will be refunded.
In the week since the announcement several States have indicated a willingness to challenge this decision in court.
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Immigration Help Available to Those Affected by Hurricane Irma https://rkalawfirm.com/immigration-help-available-to-those-affected-by-hurricane-irma/ Wed, 13 Sep 2017 14:28:23 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1507 In light of the devastating effects of Hurricane Irma, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has offered the following services on a case-by-case basis upon request:

  • Changing a nonimmigrant status or extending a nonimmigrant stay for an individual currently in the United States. Failure to apply for the extension or change before expiration of your authorized period of admission may be excused if the delay was due to extraordinary circumstances beyond your control;
  • Re-parole of individuals previously granted parole by USCIS;
  • Expedited processing of advance parole requests;
  • Expedited adjudication of requests for off-campus employment authorization for F-1 students experiencing severe economic hardship;
  • Expedited adjudication of employment authorization applications, where appropriate;
  • Consideration of fee waivers due to an inability to pay;
  • Assistance for those who received a Request for Evidence or a Notice of Intent to Deny but were unable to submit evidence or otherwise respond in a timely manner;
  • Assistance if you were unable to appear for a scheduled interview with USCIS;
  • Expedited replacement of lost or damaged immigration or travel documents issued by USCIS, such as a Permanent Resident Card (Green Card); and
  • Rescheduling a biometrics appointment.

Note: When making a request, please explain how the impact of Hurricane Irma created a need for the requested relief.

To learn how to request these measures or determine if an office is open, call the National Customer Service Center at 800-375-5283 (TDD for the deaf and hard of hearing: 800-767-1833) or visit our USCIS Office Closings webpage.

If your InfoPass appointment was affected by this storm, you can reschedule your appointment online or by calling the National Customer Service Center at 800-375-5283 (TDD for the deaf and hard of hearing: 800-767-1833).

All Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, requirements remain in place. Those affected by Hurricane Irma should review Form I-9 acceptable documents and receipts for more information on how to complete the Form I-9 if an employee’s documents are lost, stolen, or damaged. Visit I-9 Central for more information.

For more information about how we provide assistance to individuals affected by unforeseen circumstances, visit our Special Situations webpage or call the National Customer Service Center.

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Form I-90 Application to Replace Permanent Residence Card available to submit via Mobile Device! https://rkalawfirm.com/form-i-90-application-to-replace-permanent-residence-card-available-to-submit-via-mobile-device/ Wed, 26 Jul 2017 15:18:49 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1463 USCIS announced on July 25 that Lawful Permanent Residents who submit Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Residence Card without the assistance from an accredited representative or attorney, may now submit the application entirely via a mobile device. This includes uploading evidence and completing forms.

If you are interested in submitting through a mobile device, you must create an online account at https://myaccount.uscis.dhs.gov/. There is no cost to set up an account which also allows you to track the status of an application and to communicate with USCIS through a secure inbox.

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USCIS Resumes H-1B Premium Processing! https://rkalawfirm.com/uscis-resumes-h-1b-premium-processing/ Mon, 24 Jul 2017 15:37:38 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1461 Take Note! USCIS announced, effective July 24, 2017 that it will resume Premium Processing for petitions that are, or may be exempt from the annual cap. This includes:

  • Institutions of higher learning;
  • Nonprofits related and/or affiliated with an institution of higher learning;
  • Research based nonprofits or governmental based organizations.

To complete this Premium Processing request, eligible petitioners must file a Form I-907: Request for Premium Processing Service, in addition to Form I-129: Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker. These forms can be filed concurrently.

This addition of Premium Processing for potentially exempt H-1B cases follows USCIS’s previous action of resuming Premium Processing petitions filed on behalf of physicians.

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Are you preparing for the naturalization test? https://rkalawfirm.com/are-you-preparing-for-the-naturalization-test/ Wed, 01 Feb 2017 15:46:30 +0000 http://rkalawfirm.com/?p=1447

Are you preparing for the naturalization test?

As you study for the U.S. history and government (civics) test, make sure that you know the most current answers to these questions.  Periodically, answers change to reflect the results of federal and state elections and appointments or to clarify content and ensure consistency in terminology. The revised answers to the questions below are effective immediately.

20.  Who is one of your state’s U.S. senators now?

The answer to this question may have changed on January 3, 2017, when the 115th Congress began to meet. Give the name of one of your state’s current U.S. senators. For a list of current members of the U.S. Senate, please visit www.senate.gov.

23.   Name your U.S. representative.

The answer to this question may have changed on January 3, 2017, when the 115th Congress began to meet. Give the name of your current U.S. representative. For a list of current members of the U.S. House of Representatives, please visit www.house.gov.

28.  What is the name of the President of the United States now?

·        Donald J. Trump

·        Donald Trump

·        Trump

29.  What is the name of the Vice President of the United States now?

·        Michael R. Pence

·        Mike Pence

·        Pence

43.  Who is the governor of your state now?

The answer to this question may have changed depending on inauguration dates. Give the name of your state’s current governor. For a list of current governors, please visit http://www.usa.gov/Agencies/State_and_Territories.shtml.

46.  What is the political party of the President now?

  • Republican (Party)

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