USCIS Program Extension Alert

October 19, 2012

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) advises the public that Public Law 112-176, signed by the President on Sept. 28, 2012, extends the following USCIS programs until Sept. 30, 2015:

• E-Verify
• Immigrant Investor (EB-5) Pilot Program
• Special immigrant visa category for non-minister special immigrant religious workers
• The date by which J-1 nonimmigrant exchange visitors must obtain that status in order to qualify for the Conrad 30 program.

Program Details

E-Verify: E-Verify, an Internet-based system operated by USCIS in partnership with the Social Security Administration (SSA), allows participating employers to electronically verify the employment eligibility of their newly hired employees. More than 402,000 participating employers at nearly 1.2 million worksites nationwide currently use the program. Since Oct. 1, 2011, more than 20 million employment verification queries have been run through the system and approximately 98.3 percent of all queries are now automatically confirmed without any need for employee action.

Immigrant Investor (EB-5) Pilot Program: Under the Immigrant Investor Pilot Program, USCIS will continue to receive, process, and adjudicate all Regional Center Proposals, Forms I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur, and Forms I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, affiliated with Regional Centers relying on “indirect” job creation analysis. Currently, there are more than 70 regional centers throughout the United States.

Religious Worker Visa: The special immigrant visa category for non-minister religious workers covers individuals within a religious vocation or occupation and also applies to accompanying or “following-to-join” spouses and children of these religious workers. USCIS will continue to receive and process Forms 1-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant, Forms I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, and Forms I-824, Application for Action on an Approved Application or Petition, that relate to religious workers and their families covered by Public Law 112-176.

Conrad 30: USCIS will continue to adjudicate immigration benefits covered by the Conrad 30 program. The Conrad 30 program allows each state health department to submit a request directly to the Department of State to initiate the waiver process for a foreign medical graduate who obtained J-1 status to change to another status without the required two-year foreign residence. The law previously required the foreign medical graduate to have acquired J-1 status before Sept. 30, 2012; the law now extends the program to cover J-1 admissions before Sept. 30, 2015.

Source of Information: "USCIS.com NEWS (10/05/2012)"

MVP "Immigration Q & A Forum" - This Friday, August 17, 2012

August 13, 2012

We wanted to find a new way to engage our reader base. Every other Friday, we will post the ten (10) best/most frequently asked questions received during the week from our h1bvisalawyerblog, Facebook, and Twitter readers. We will answer those questions and provide the Q&A on our H-1B Visa Lawyer Blog.

If you have a burning question, are seeking assistance with a difficult immigration related case, wish to discuss your views on Comprehensive Immigration Reform, DREAMers, priority dates, the monthly visa bulletin, adjustment applications, etc., please contact us by submitting your question/comment/viewpoint in our comment box provided on our H-1B Visa Lawyer Blog.

Our next “Q & A Forum” will take place this Friday, August 17, 2012. Act now and submit your questions!

THANK YOU!

MVP Law Group, P.A. makes available the information and materials in this forum for informational purposes only. The information is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice or any contractual obligations. Further, the use of this site, and the sending or receipt of this information, does not create an attorney-client relationship between us. Therefore, your communication with us through this forum will not be considered as privileged or confidential.

MVP "Immigration Q & A Forum" - This Friday, March 30, 2012

March 26, 2012

We wanted to find a new way to engage our reader base. Every other Friday, we will post the ten (10) best/most frequently asked questions received during the week from our h1bvisalawyerblog, Facebook, and Twitter readers. We will answer those questions and provide the Q&A on our H-1B Visa Lawyer Blog.

If you have a burning question, are seeking assistance with a difficult immigration related case, wish to discuss your views on Comprehensive Immigration Reform, priority dates, the monthly visa bulletin, adjustment applications or the debate focused on Ending Birthright Citizenship, please contact us by submitting your question/comment/viewpoint in our comment box provided on our H-1B Visa Lawyer Blog.

Our next “Q & A Forum” will take place this Friday, March 30th, 2012. Act now and submit your questions!

THANK YOU!

MVP Law Group, P.A. makes available the information and materials in this forum for informational purposes only. The information is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice or any contractual obligations. Further, the use of this site, and the sending or receipt of this information, does not create an attorney-client relationship between us. Therefore, your communication with us through this forum will not be considered as privileged or confidential.

MVP "Immigration Q & A Forum" - This Friday, February 17, 2012

February 13, 2012

We wanted to find a new way to engage our reader base. Every other Friday, we will post the ten (10) best/most frequently asked questions received during the week from our h1bvisalawyerblog, Facebook, and Twitter readers. We will answer those questions and provide the Q&A on our H-1B Visa Lawyer Blog.

If you have a burning question, are seeking assistance with a difficult immigration related case, wish to discuss your views on Comprehensive Immigration Reform, AZ SB1070, priority dates, the monthly visa bulletin, adjustment applications or the debate focused on Ending Birthright Citizenship, please contact us by submitting your question/comment/viewpoint in our comment box provided on our H-1B Visa Lawyer Blog.

Our next “Q & A Forum” will take place this Friday, February 17th, 2012. Act now and submit your questions!

THANK YOU!

MVP Law Group, P.A. makes available the information and materials in this forum for informational purposes only. The information is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice or any contractual obligations. Further, the use of this site, and the sending or receipt of this information, does not create an attorney-client relationship between us. And, therefore, your communication with us through this forum will not be considered as privileged or confidential.

Updated Service Center Processing Times

January 31, 2012

Processing Time reports for all of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) Service Centers were released on January 25, 2012 with processing dates as of November 30, 2011.

If you filed a petition with one of the Service Centers, please review the links below to determine the applicable processing time associated with your particular case.

California Service Center
National Benefits Center
Nebraska Service Center
Texas Service Center
Vermont Service Center

**Please be aware that the data provided above is approximately 45 days old at the time of posting.

If your petition is out-side of the normal range listed, contact USCIS. (1-800-375-5283)

If you are a client of MVP Law Group and would like our assistance please contact our office.

Department of State introduces "Student Intern" J-1 Visa Category

June 24, 2008

On June 20, 2008, the Department of State (DOS) revised its regulations governing J-1 visas by publishing the final rulein the Federal Register. The rule creates a new “Student Interns” subcategory to the College and University Student J-1 visa category. Foreign students enrolled and pursuing a degree at post-secondary academic institutions outside of the United States may participate in this category for up to 12 months at each degree level. DATES: This Final Rule will be effective July 21, 2008.

This new rule will make it possible for private sector organizations to offer internships to individuals with less training and experience than had previously been required of J-1 ``trainee'' category participants. To be eligible as an intern in a private sector program, foreign nationals must be currently enrolled in and pursuing studies at an academic institution or a recent graduate (i.e., within 12 months) from such institution. As an intern, the intern program participant will enter the United States to pursue a structured and guided work-based internship program in his or her specific academic field. Prior work experience is nor a requirement for participation in this program.

Sponsors of J-1 interns will be required to ensure that host organizations are legitimate entities, are appropriately registered or licensed to conduct their business, and possess and maintain the ability and resources to provide structured and guided work-based experience according to individualized Training and Internship Placement Plans. The Final Rule permits a student intern to engage in full-time employment during the internship program as outlined on the T/IPP, with or without wages or other compensation. Employment is not required for participation in the program. A student intern may be employed, however, only with the approval of the responsible officer and the student's home institution's dean or academic advisor.

These regulations prohibit a sponsor from placing a student intern in an unskilled or casual labor position, in a position that requires or involves child care or elder care, in a position in the field of aviation, or in any kind of position that involves patient care or contact. Finally, a sponsor must not place a student intern in a position that involves more than 20 per cent clerical work.