If you are an international student, planning to graduate soon, and want to take the OPT -> H1B path, be careful about the timing of your graduation and your OPT start/end date. In short, plan your graduation date so that your OPT expires after April 1. Continue reading
Most visa categories and green card categories do not have requirements as to who must pay the fees associated with the application. However, H1B and PERM (EB2 and EB3 categories) are the exceptions. Immigration laws require that the employer (sponsor) pays at least a portion of the fees. This not only increases the burden on employers, but also puts burden on potential employees who are desperately trying to get a job offer. Continue reading
The Visa Bulletin updated every month by the Department of State is an indication of how much longer a Green Card applicant must wait until he can get his green card. Starting from the October 2015 Visa Bulletin, the structure of the Visa Bulletin has changed in a few ways. These changes are great news for those who have a long waiting period, since they can now file I-485 much earlier, which potentially means that they can get their Employment Authorization Document (work permit) and Advance Parole (travel document) much earlier. The new changes will also enable some applicants to continue to stay and work in the U.S., who would have otherwise had to leave the U.S. and wait in their home countries. Continue reading
on July 21, 2015, USCIS published its “Final Guidance on When to File an Amended or New H-1B Petition After Matter of Simeio Solutions, LLC.” Under this new rule, whenever a company wants to relocate its H1B worker(s) to a different metropolitan statistical area (MSA), the company must file not only a new Labor Condition Application (LCA) with the Department of Labor, but also an amended or new H1B petition with the USCIS. This new rule is based on USCIS’ Administrative Appeal Office (AAO)’s recent precedent decision, Matter of Simeio Solutions, LLC on April 9, 2015. Continue reading
On 06/25/2015, the USCIS held a public engagement teleconference regarding its new program creating a parole status for inventors, researchers and founders of start-up enterprises. This program is proposed as part of President Obama’s executive actions on immigration announced on November 20, 2014. The rules of the program are not set yet, and the purpose of the teleconference was for the USCIS to receive comments from stakeholders so that they can create the detailed rules for this parole program. Continue reading
[Update] On July 21, 2015, USCIS published its final guidance regarding this issue. Check the final guidance here.
It had been the rule that whenever a H1B worker changes work location to a different metropolitan statistical area (MSA), the employer had to refile a Labor Condition Application (LCA). Now, the new rule requires that the employer not only refile a LCA with the Department of Labor, but also file an amended H1B petition with the USCIS. This new rule is based on USCIS’ Administrative Appeal Office (AAO)’s recent precedent decision, Matter of Simeio Solutions, LLC on April 9, 2015. Continue reading