News Updates

WEEKLY IMMIGRATION UPDATE 8.17.2020

20:55 17 August in News Updates by Larrabee

HEADLINES   GAO Says Appointments of Wolf and Cuccinelli to Acting DHS Leadership[ Roles Were Invalid -- GAO concluded that the appointments of Chad Wolf (as DHS Acting Secretary) and Kenneth Cuccinelli (as Senior Official Performing the Duties of Deputy Secretary) were invalid. Please scroll down to view the full updates.   USCIS Suddenly Begins Selecting New H-1B Lottery Winners -- According to reports, USCIS experienced an unexpected decline in H-1B filings and therefore is selecting additional H-1B lottery winners from previous H-1B submissions.   Reminder:  New I-765 Form Must Be Used If Postmarked On or After August 25, 2020...

State Department Announces Update to National Interest Exceptions to Presidential Proclamation 10052

15:47 12 August in News Updates by Larrabee

LAC advisory: Please note the significant conditions placed on issuance of an H-1B visa to an individual who seeks to return to H-1B employment in the United States.   The below changes to the proclamation do not provide any guarantee of return from international travel if visa renewal (stamping at the consulate) is required.    If an emergency appointment is granted by the consulate, the consular officer will be required to assess a number of factors beyond the current H-1B regulatory criteria.  That means that applicants must build a case demonstrating their merit for a national interest exception (NIE) to the travel ban...

WEEKLY IMMIGRATION UPDATE 8.10.2020

15:37 10 August in News Updates by Larrabee

HEADLINES   Executive Order Heightens Scrutiny of Contractors employing Foreign Workers -- The order instructs the Secretaries of Labor and Homeland Security to take action to protect U.S. workers from "any adverse effects on wages and working conditions caused by the employment of H-1B visa holders at job sites (including third-party job sites)," among other things.  Please see full details below. Court Extends Temporary Restraining Order in Case Challenging EAD Delays -- On August 6, a U.S. District Court extended a temporary restraining order to August 24, 2020, to allow the parties time to negotiate a consent decree to resolve the...

USCIS to Increase Many Filing Fees Effective October 2, 2020

14:02 04 August in News Updates by Larrabee

8/03/20 Background Today USCIS published a final rule that significantly increases certain immigration and naturalization benefit request fees.  The rule, which will be effective October 2, 2020, also removes certain fee exemptions, changes fee waiver requirements, alters premium processing time limits, and modifies intercountry adoption processing.  Any application, petition, or request postmarked on or after October 2, 2020, must be accompanied with the fees set forth in the final rule. The final rule increases USCIS fees by a weighted average of 20 percent, adding new fees for certain immigration benefit requests, establishing individual fees for nonimmigrant worker petition type, and limiting the number...

WEEKLY IMMIGRATION UPDATE 8.03.2020

21:00 03 August in News Updates by Larrabee

HEADLINES DHS to Raise Fees Significantly for Many Immigration Benefits -  Today DHS published final rule which will apply to cases filed with USCIS on or after October 2, 2020.   The rule will significantly increase many immigration fees charged by USCIS, and reduce some others.   It also removes certain fee exemptions; changes fee waiver requirements; establishes multiple fees for nonimmigrant worker petitions; alters premium processing time limits; and makes changes related to setting, collecting, and administering fees, among other things.   Please see some details below, and look for a special LAC legal update specific to the issue later today.   ...

WEEKLY IMMIGRATION UPDATE 7.27.2020

21:08 27 July in News Updates by Larrabee

HEADLINES:  JULY 27, 2020 1. SEVP Issues 'Clarifying' Q&A for Foreign Students re Online-Only Coursework Visa Ban   U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) released new guidance dated July 24, 2020, in the form of "clarifying" questions and answers regarding the Trump administration's shifting policy on foreign students taking online coursework in the fall. The guidance follows the Trump administration's agreement on July 14, 2020, to rescind a new policy to bar all nonimmigrant F-1 and M-1 students taking only online classes, due to the pandemic, for the fall 2020 semester from entering into or remaining in the...

WEEKLY IMMIGRATION UPDATE 7.20.2020

15:01 24 July in News Updates by Larrabee

HEADLINES:  JULY 20, 2020 Headlines: Trump Administration Agrees to Rescind New Foreign Student Online-Only Ban - The Trump administration agreed to rescind its new policy to bar nonimmigrant F-1 and M-1 students taking only online classes for the fall 2020 semester from entering into or remaining in the United States. State Dept. Lists Exceptions Under Recent Presidential Proclamations Suspending Entry of Immigrants and Nonimmigrants -The list includes exceptions for H-1B, H-2B, H-4, L-1, L-2, J-1, and J-2 visas. Phased Resumption of Services Begins for Visa and Passport Processing; MRV Fees Paid During Suspension Remain Valid - The resumption will occur on a...

Presidential Proclamation Suspending Entry on Nonimmigrant Visas Update

21:12 17 July in News Updates by Larrabee

On June 22, 2020 a Presidential Proclamation was issued which suspended the entry of certain nonimmigrants to the U.S. and extended the suspension of new immigrant visas issued abroad. Specifically, the Proclamation suspended the entry of individuals outside the U.S. without a valid visa or travel document in the following nonimmigrant visa categories: - H-1B specialty occupation workers and H-4 family members; - H-2B seasonal non-agricultural workers and H-4 family members; - J-1 exchange visitors in the following sub-categories: intern, trainee, teacher, camp counselor, au pair, or summer work travel program, and J-2 family members; - L-1 intracompany transferees (both L-1A executive/managerial and L-1B specialized knowledge)...