News Updates

2021 DIVERSITY VISA LOTTERY – ONLINE ENTRY PERIOD

14:03 01 October in News Updates by Larrabee

Begins at Noon EST on Wednesday, October 2, 2019 Ends at Noon EST on Tuesday, November 5, 2019 The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (also known as the Green Card or DV 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 in one of the family-based or employment-based categories. For fiscal year 2021, 55,000 diversity visas will be available. There are various bills pending before Congress which call for the...

Approved and Pending H-1B Cap Petitions as of October 1, 2019

15:08 23 September in News Updates by Larrabee

October 1st marks the date when H-1B petitions filed under the annual cap are set to take effect.  Below are some important reminders for approved H-1B petitions and options for petitions that remain pending. H-1B Petitions Approved as Change of Status versus Consular Notification H-1B petitions reflecting an approved "change of status" will take effect automatically on October 1st.  The I-797 Approval Notice will include an I-94 card at the bottom, which will replace the I-94 admissions record previously issued to the beneficiary. H-1B petitions approved through "consular notification" do not take effect automatically.  The I-797 Approval notice will indicate that notification of...

Important Notice Regarding Eligibility for Visa Waiver Program Following Travel to Certain Countries

14:40 13 September in News Updates by Larrabee

Travelers in the following categories are no longer eligible to travel or be admitted to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP): -  Nationals of VWP countries who have traveled to or been present in Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Somalia and Yemen on or after March 1, 2011 (with limited exceptions for travel for diplomatic or military purposes in the service of a VWP country). -  Nationals of VWP countries who are also nationals of Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Sudan, or Syria. Those ineligible to use the VWP have the option of applying for a B-1/ B-2 visitor...

LAC Welcomes (Back) Attorney Grace Zimmerman

18:17 03 September in News Updates by Larrabee

LARRABEE ALBI COKER LLP Welcomes Attorney GRACE ZIMMERMAN OF COUNSEL Some of you will remember Grace as an early partner of the firm, which evolved from an immigration practice initially established by Attorney Peter Larrabee in 1981.  The immigration practice broke away from Gray Cary Ware & Freidenrich (now DLA Piper), and became Larrabee & Associates, which is today Larrabee Albi Coker LLP.    Grace joined the firm when it was Larrabee & Associates in 1996, and became a partner of the firm in 1999.  In 2006 Grace moved on to lead her own practice, and after some time as of counsel...

Legal Update: Continue to Use Current Version of Form I-9

18:13 03 September in News Updates by Larrabee

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has advised that employers should continue to use the current version of Form I-9, bearing a revision date of July 17, 2017, even after the form expiration date of August 31, 2019 has passed.   The current version of the form and information regarding completion is available on I-9 Central. USCIS has advised it will provide updated information about the new version of the Form I-9 as soon as it becomes available; they have not provided any timeline.   Please note it is not unusual for USCIS to extend the validity of forms in this manner. Note that the...

Visa Bulletin Update & Predictions of Future Visa Availability

18:10 03 September in News Updates by Larrabee

Visa Bulletin Update - Employment-Based Third Preference (EB-3) Immediately Unavailable Through End of Fiscal Year 2019 Each month, the U.S. Department of State publishes its Visa Bulletin, which lists dates of immigrant visa availability based on priority date, visa category, and country of nationality.  The purpose of the Visa Bulletin is to provide applicants for permanent residency an update as to when their priority date may become current so that they may proceed to the last step in the green card process.  As the end of Fiscal Year 2019 (FY2019) approaches on September 30, 2019, visa availability has begun to slow...

LAC Partners selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2020 in the field of Immigration Law

16:36 21 August in News Updates by Larrabee

Fausta Albi and Diana Vellos Coker have been selected by their peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America® 2020 in the field of Immigration Law. Corporate Counsel magazine has called Best Lawyers "the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice."  Both partners have been included on this list since 2009. Best Lawyers is the oldest and most respected attorney ranking service in the world. For more than 30 years, Best Lawyers has assisted those in need of legal services to identify the attorneys best qualified to represent them in distant jurisdictions or unfamiliar specialties. Best Lawyers lists are...

Significant Changes to the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program

16:43 25 July in News Updates by Larrabee

On July 24, 2019, USCIS published the much anticipated final regulation overhauling the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program.  This program was created by Congress in 1990 to promote employment creation in the United States.  Under the EB-5 program, foreign nationals are able to apply for permanent resident status if they make a required minimum investment in a new commercial enterprise which will create 10 full-time jobs in the United States. The regulations published yesterday, which take effect on November 21, 2019, will increase the standard minimum investment amount from $1 million to $1.8 million, and the minimum investment amount in a Targeted...

USCIS UPDATE: PREMIUM PROCESSING FOR H-1B CAP-SUBJECT PETITIONS

19:05 10 June in News Updates by Larrabee

The USCIS issued the below press release, indicating that as of today they will accept premium processing requests for all H-1B Cap-Subject petitions.  A request for premium processing may now be added to an H-1B Cap-Subject petition pending adjudication with USCIS.  The USCIS filing fee is $1,410, for which USCIS will guarantee a response within 15 calendar days.  Note that the response may be an approval, denial, or request for additional evidence. USCIS Press Release June 7, 2019 Premium Processing Begins for Remaining H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions on June 10 On June 10, we will begin premium processing for all remaining FY 2020 H-1B cap-subject...