Immigration and Firm News

The Trump Administration is cracking down on fraud and misrepresentation. The US Department of State (DOS) has updated its guidelines or policy in the Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM) concerning what activities are inconsistent with visa status that could give rise to a finding of fraud or misrepresentation in light of when those activities occur. Previously, the DOS used the "30/60/90-day rule." This rule said that there would be a presumption of fraud or misrepresentation if a person entered the … [Read more...]

On January 27, 2017, President Trump issued another Executive Orders on immigration. This one, though, entitled “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States” basically bans from entry people "from" seven countries, suspends refugee admissions temporarily, and reduces overall refugee admissions for FY2017.  The Executive Order (EO) also imposes ideological vetting, and provides some exceptions only for non-Muslim refugees.  More Executive Orders are expected to be … [Read more...]

On January 25, 2017, President Trump issued two Executive Orders on immigration, both of which are focused on enforcement at the border and the interior and address some issues concerning visas and refugees. More Executive Orders are expected to be forthcoming addressing legal immigration and other topics. It is important to note that much of this is political in nature and intended to appeal to his voter base. The orders clearly have their origin from the 79 Stroke of a Pen playbook from the … [Read more...]

I previously reported on the new Filing Date v. Final Action Date policy of the US State Department and USCIS concerning the quota, and the debacle resulting from the State Department rolling back some filing dates between September 9 and September 25, 2015 for the October 2015 Visa Bulletin.  On September 28, 2015 a lawsuit was filed against the State Department, Mehta v. DOS, in which the plaintiffs sought declaratory relief from the court.  Plaintiffs ask the court to order the State … [Read more...]

In a prior blog post, I reported on the new State Department and USCIS policy permitting early filing of some adjustment of status and immigrant visa petitions in advance of the quota being current.  However, on September 25, 2015, the State Department revised its October 2015 Visa Bulletin. In particular, it rolled back both Final Adjudication and new Filing Date priority dates for certain applicants from India, China, the Philippines, and Mexico.  (See also the USCIS announcement about the … [Read more...]

On September 9, 2015, the US State Department (DOS) and US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a new joint policy regarding early filing of green card applications for people stuck in the quotas.  All business and family green card categories EXCEPT for "immediate relatives" (spouses and children under 21 and parents of U.S. citizens) are subject to annual category and per country limits.  When demand exceeds supply, there is a backlog or quota, and applications for green cards, … [Read more...]

On June 17, 2015, the U.S. State Department reported that various U.S. consular and embassy posts around the world are experiencing technical problems issuing visas.  It is unclear if the technical glitches are affecting both non-immigrant and immigrant visas.  The State Department says on its web page that the problems are with its Consular Consolidated Database (CCD) and that they have government and private contractors working on fixing a patch.  We have had several clients receive both … [Read more...]

On February 15, 2015, the US State Department issued a cable announcing that starting March 1, 2015, medical exam results will only be valid for six months, or three months depending upon exam results for tuberculosis (TB) or HIV.  These changes actually come from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), which regulates immigrants' medical exams. Previously, medical exams were good for up to a year for non-TB results.  This means applicants for immigrant visas are going to need repeated medical … [Read more...]