General Immigration News and Updates

On November 2, 2020, the Department of Homeland Security issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) announcing its plan to drastically change the way USCIS selects the H-1B Cap registrations of U.S. employers.  If the Proposed Rule is finalized in its current form and made effective, this would affect the registration selection process for employers

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced revisions to the naturalization civics test.  The changes will affect those applicants who apply after December 1, 2020.  These applicants will need to take the updated version of the civics test.

Instead of studying 100 questions, applicants must now study 128 possible questions.   The new test is

Just released by USCIS:  The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has announced an interim final rule (IFR) that strengthens the H-1B nonimmigrant visa program to protect U.S. workers, restores integrity to the H-1B program, and better guarantees that H-1B petitions are approved only for qualified beneficiaries and petitioners.

While the H-1B program was intended to

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced that it will not furlough employees as had been previously scheduled to begin on August 30, 2020.  USCIS had previously pushed back the anticipated furlough in August and now has cancelled it altogether, with the expectation of being able to maintain operations through the end of fiscal

The production of certain Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) have been delayed due to to COVID-19.  Today, USCIS announced that due to these production delays, employees may use Form I-797, Notice of Action, with a Notice date on or after December 1, 2019 through and including August 20, 2020 for Form I-9 employment eligibility verification purposes. 

In our continuing series of reports, Charles (“Charlie”) Oppenheim, Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division, U.S. Department of State, shares his most recent analysis of current trends and future projections for the various immigrant preference categories with AILA (the American Immigration Lawyers’ Association).

Below are highlights from the most recent “check-in with Charlie”

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced on July 18th that it will provide a 30-day extension to its temporary policy allowing flexibility in the rules related to Form I-9 for employers operating 100% remotely in light of COVID-19. The new expiration date for these accommodations is August 19, 2020.

On March 19 due to

The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement known as the USMCA is effective July 1, 2020. The USMCA replaces the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) which expired June 30, 2020. As it relates to US immigration, the USMCA includes comparable provisions as found in the NAFTA for Business Visitors, Traders and Investors, Intracompany Transferees, and Professionals. No

In our continuing series of reports, Charles (“Charlie”) Oppenheim, Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division, U.S. Department of State, shares his most recent analysis of current trends and future projections for the various immigrant preference categories with AILA (the American Immigration Lawyers’ Association).

Below are highlights from the most recent “check-in with Charlie”

Yesterday, June 22, 2020, President Trump issued the anticipated Proclamation suspending the entry into the US of certain nonimmigrant visa holders.  Specifically, the following new restrictions are in effect 6/24/2020:

  • The executive order applies to foreign nationals who seek to enter the United States in H1B, H-4, H2B, L-1, or L-2 status (as well as