News Updates

LAC ranked First Tier in San Diego, CA

15:07 11 November in News Updates by Larrabee

Larrabee Albi Coker LLP is ranked First Tier in San Diego, California in Immigration Law for 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.  The U.S. News and World Report - Best Lawyers "Best Law Firms" rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their field, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process....

Registration Period for the 2016 Diversity Visa Lottery to Begin October 1, 2014

12:04 03 October in News Updates by Larrabee

The 2016 Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery online entry period will begin at Noon ET on October 1, 2014, and will end at Noon ET on November 3, 2014. Applicants may access the eligibility requirements, instructions for application, and FAQs for the 2016 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program at: http://travel.state.gov/content/dam/visas/DV-2016-Instructions-Translations/DV_2016_Instructions_English.pdf. The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (also known as the Green Card Lottery) provides immigrant visas each fiscal year for persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. Essentially, this program provides certain nationalities with the opportunity to win the chance to apply for a green card, without having to qualify...

DOMA – Update on the Implementation of the Supreme Court’s Decision

14:59 02 October in News Updates by Larrabee

As we continue to follow the historic U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and the impact of that decision on U.S. immigration, we wanted to advise our clients of recent guidance issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and by the U.S. Department of State (DOS) on this topic. The USCIS recently released updated FAQs -- http://www.uscis.gov/family/same-sex-marriages. We would like to highlight the following Q&A present within the USCIS FAQs which indicates that in addition to immigrant filings for same-sex spouses, nonimmigrant dependent filings (e.g., H-4, L-2, etc.) are...

Comprehensive Immigration Reform Passes the Senate!

14:51 02 October in News Updates by Larrabee

On Thursday, June 27, 2013 the United States Senate passed S. 744, the "Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act," (Comprehensive Immigration Reform) with a vote of 68-32. With the passage of this bill, the Senate has moved the United States in the direction of immigration reform that is vital to businesses, the economy, and immigrant families. In response to the vote, President Obama issued a statement, lauding the Senate's action: Today, the Senate did its job. It's now up to the House to do the same. As this process moves forward, I urge everyone who cares about this issue to keep...

Defense of Marriage Act – How Does the Supreme Court’s Decision Impact Immigration?

14:48 02 October in News Updates by Larrabee

On June 26, 2013 the U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision that struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). Section 3 defines marriage as between a man and a woman. The Supreme Court's decision affirmed that the federal government does not have any legitimate reason to discriminate against married couples based on their sexual orientation. Department of Homeland Security's Secretary Janet Napolitano issued a press release stating "Today's historic decision means that our immigration system must stop treating gay and lesbian families differently than other families. "I applaud today's Supreme Court decision in...

Trusted Traveler Programs Can Reduce Your Travel Stress

14:46 02 October in News Updates by Larrabee

If you are a frequent international traveler, you may benefit from enrollment in one of U.S. Customs and Border Protection's Trusted Traveler programs. The Trusted Traveler programs allow CBP to pre-screen the traveler resulting in expedited admission for the traveler and allowing CBP to focus its time and attention on higher-risk travelers. Each of the Trusted Traveler programs require a thorough background check and an application fee, and exclude anyone with even a minor criminal, immigration or customs violation. For those enrolled, participation can significantly reduce a person's travel time. For example, at the San Ysidro, California land border port of...

Lottery Completed – 172,000 H-1B Petitions Received

08:04 02 October in News Updates by Larrabee

SCIS Announces 172,000 Cap Subject H-1B Petitions were received in the first week filing was permitted.  Lottery Completed. Cases selected in the lottery:  LAC will forward the receipt notice for any petitions selected in the lottery to the employee (via the employer) as soon as it is received. Cases not selected in the lottery:  H-1B petitions that are not selected in the lottery will be returned to counsel with the government filing fees.  We will notify impacted clients upon receipt of the returned petitions, and promptly refund the USCIS filing fees to the employer. Timeline for lottery notifications:  USCIS has not provided a...

USCIS will begin accepting H-1B petitions for the 2015

08:02 02 October in News Updates by Larrabee

April 1, 2014 marks the opening date of the filing window for H-1B petitions seeking a FY2015 cap or quota number.  USCIS will begin accepting H-1B petitions for the 2015 H-1B cap starting Tuesday, April 1, 2014. The H-1B quota limitations are as follows: Regular cap (Bachelor's degree):    58,200 Regular cap, Citizen of Chile:           1,400 Regular cap, Citizen of Singapore:   5,400 Master's cap (Master's degree or higher from a U.S. University):   20,000 Background: You may recall that on the first day the filing window opened for 2013 (FY2014), the H-1B quota limitations were met which triggered the lottery provision.  This provision requires the USCIS to allow employers...

CBP rolls out automation of Form I-94 Arrival/Departure Record

22:49 01 October in News Updates by Larrabee

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will cease issuing paper I-94 admission/departure records beginning April 30, 2013. Beginning April 30, 2013, U.S Customs and Border Protection will begin automating the I-94 process. Form I-94 provides nonimmigrants with proof that they have been lawfully admitted to the U.S. As part of the automation process, individuals traveling to the U.S. by air or sea will no longer complete or receive a paper I-94 document. Despite this change, USCIS will continue to require applicants to submit a paper copy of Form I-94 when requesting certain benefits. In addition, other government agencies such as State...