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USCIS Aims to Improve H-1B Filing Process

USCIS is preparing to roll out a significant change in the process for filing new H-1B petitions in 2020 in an attempt to reduce some of the uncertainty and inefficiency that the current lottery process has created.  The H-1B program allows companies in the United States to temporarily...

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USCIS Proposes Fee Increases

USCIS has announced a plan to significantly increase filing fees for nearly every type of immigration petitioner -- another step toward making legal immigration exceedingly difficult.

The majority (about 96%) of USCIS operations are funded by filing fees supplied by applicants. While it is...

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Filing Green Card Applications Online

USCIS recently announced that a new form -- Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative -- can now be filed online. When filing online, petitioners can submit all required forms and supporting evidence electronically and can track their case and receive notices through their online USCIS account.

...

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USCIS Announces New Security-Enhanced Travel Documents

USCIS announced that as of October 24, 2019 they are beginning to produce a new travel document that will look similar to a US Passport for some lawful permanent residents (green card holder) and those with refugee or asylum status.  The new travel document is a booklet with several...

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USCIS Adjusting Premium Processing Fee

USCIS announced that as of December 2, 2019, it is increasing the Premium Processing fee to $1440 from the current fee of $1410.  USCIS said that the $30 fee increase is due to inflation based on the Consumer Price Index for all Urban Consumers.  Premium Processing was last increased in...

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Update on EB-5 Investor Visa Wait Times

Charles Oppenheim, Chief of the Immigrant Visa Control & Reporting Division of the Department of Status, provided an update about the use of and projected availability of visas for the Employment-Based-5th preference (EB-5).

Overview

The EB-5 visa category is a path to an immigrant visa, or...

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Federal Judge Temporarily Blocks Proposed Health Insurance Requirement

Last month, President Trump announced that, beginning November 3, 2019, all intending immigrants applying for visas at US consulates and embassies abroad will be required to obtain health insurance within 30 days of entering the US. The intention of the new proposed policy is to suspend entry of...

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USCIS Extends TPS Status for Six Countries

Earlier this week, the Trump administration announced that they had reached an agreement with El Salvador and would be extending TPS (Temporary Protected Status) for Salvadorans in the US for one year. TPS is a program that provides temporary legal status and work authorization to foreigners in...

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TPS for Salvadorans Extended

On Monday, October 28th, the Trump administration granted a one year extension to TPS (Temporary Protected Status) to Salvadorans living in the US. The program has been at risk of termination since Trump became president, as he sought to reduce immigration by cancelling TPS status for...

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DACA Recipients Strongly Encouraged to File Renewal Before 2020

The Supreme Court is scheduled to begin hearing arguments for the proposed termination of the DACA program beginning on November 12, 2019. The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program was temporarily paused when the Trump administration announced in 2017 their intention to end the program...

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State Department Opens up Public Charge Rule and New Health Insurance Form for Public Review

Last week, the Department of State announced an update to the interim final rule following the nationwide injunction of proposed new public charge policies. The interim rule aims to align DOS policies with the Department of Homeland Security, and it specifies that, even though the new policies...

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Bill in the US Congress Strives to Cut Employment-Based Visa Backlog

The U.S. House of Representatives took a step to reduce the immigrant visa backlog for certain countries.  H.R.1044 Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019 passed the House in a 365-65 vote in September and is now before the US Senate as bill number S.386. The proposed law increases...

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