United States Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that it will be creating a program to allow people with U Visas to more easily apply for work permits. This program will enable U Visa holders to legally work in the United States, allowing them to sustain themselves while in the country. It will also help to protect U Visa holders from exploitation, which is significant because they are among the most vulnerable members of the immigrant population. Continue reading “USCIS Set to Grant Work Permits to U Visa Holders”
The United States Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that it is allowing Burmese and Haitian nationals to apply for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). These nationals, if they meet the specified criteria, will be able to legally reside within the United States so long as they have TPS. However, anyone in the U.S. who hails from Myanmar (the modern name for Burma) or Haiti must apply before the 180 day application window ends, or else miss out on their opportunity. Continue reading “DHS Announces TPS Status for Burmese and Haitian Nationals”
United States Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) has instituted a new immigrant visa priority system that will affect how immigrant visas are processed. This new system is intended to help sort through a backlog of immigrant visa applications, which has grown to an extraordinary size due to COVID-19. It is also meant to help those who have been most negatively impacted by the immigration backlog, by ensuring their visa applications are processed more quickly. Continue reading “USCIS Institutes New Immigrant Visa Priority System”
In 2019, United States Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) implemented a rule affecting certain forms, including those used by asylum applicants and victims of certain criminal acts. Now, that rule has been reversed, such that a blank space is no longer automatically disqualifying. This will make it easier for asylum applicants with missing or incomplete documentation to get asylum status. Continue reading “USCIS Reverses “Blank Space” Rule for Asylum Applicants”
American consulates around the world have once again begun issuing H-1B visas, as well as other visas, which will permit people to legally work in the United States. A ban was placed on these visas being issued during the coronavirus pandemic, which was meant to curtail the spread of the virus and limit the economic impact on American workers. By resuming the issuing of these visas, however, more people will be able to seek employment with American companies. Continue reading “U.S. Resumes Issuing Visas for Foreign Workers”
The Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas, recently announced that Venezuelans living in the U.S. continuously since March 18, 2021, will be eligible for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). This will enable them to apply for Employment Authorization, and will allow them to remain in the U.S. for eighteen (18) months- until September 2022.
Each applicant must submit the application for TPS on Form I-821 with supporting documents such as: Continue reading “Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Venezuelan Nationals”
The U.S. Citizenship Act – Part 1
The U.S. Citizenship Act has been proposed by President Biden and introduced in the House of Representatives and Senate. The legislation provides for an:
Earned Path to Citizenship- Creates a new designation called Lawful Prospective Immigrant (LPI) status.
Criteria to qualify:
1. Must be physically present in the U.S. on or before January 1, 2021
2. Must pass criminal & security checks
3. Pay the requisite filing fee, and submit application
After one and a half years, President Obama finally decided that “enough is enough” and pulled the trigger on enacting immigration reforms. While the measures taken by President Obama fall short of the bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform bill that unanimously passed the Senate in June, 2013, they are certainly expansive in nature, and provide some relief to the millions of undocumented Americans living in this country. The president does not have authority to provide a pathway to citizenship without the cooperation of the Senate and the House of Representatives. We are very happy with these changes, and applaud President Obama for taking this action.
The attached article, published on November 13, 2014 in the New York Times, reveals President Obama’s likely plans for immigration reform via an executive order. We are hopeful that in addition to granting deferred action for the parents of U.S. citizen children, lawful permanent residents, and DACA recipients, the President goes a step further, and allows certain immigrants, who have been living in the U.S. for a long period of time, to Parole in Place. The Parole in Place doctrine will allow those eligible, to receive their Lawful Permanent Residence (green card) in the United States.
With comprehensive immigration reform stalled in the House of Representatives, and President Obama inundated with complaints from the Latino activists, the President recently ordered his Department of Homeland Security Secretary, Jeh C. Johnson, to conduct an evaluation of all deportations of illegal immigrants.
When it is predictably confirmed by DHS Secretary Johnson that the far majority of those immigrants removed from this country are not dangerous criminals, but are rather hard working people trying to make a better life for their family, President Obama will have a few options at his disposal besides sitting back and waiting for the House to act on immigration reform. Continue reading “Immigration Reform has Stalled…Now What?”