U.S. Immigration Updates: H-1B Cap, Prevailing Wage Rule and International Travel Updates

Immigration updates from the end of the Trump administration include USCIS’s final rule modifying the H-1B cap selection process, DOL’s final rule on computation of prevailing wage levels, and executive orders extending immigration restrictions and terminating some travel restrictions — all of which may be changed by litigation or the Biden administration. It is also time to start planning for the FY2022 H-1B cap season.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

November 2020 Visa Bulletin Update: USCIS Will Continue Using ‘Dates for Filing’ Chart

On October 29, 2020, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) issued the November Visa Bulletin. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) confirmed that it will use the “Dates for Filing” chart. For employment-based visa categories, the “Dates for Filing” chart is the same as last month, except for modest advancement in the EB-3 China “other workers” category. Foreign nationals who are eligible to file their employment-based visa applications in October can file their applications in November.

The November “Final Action Dates” chart shows slight forward movement in employment-based visa categories. Notably, EB-1 India and China categories will advance by six months.

For more information on this topic, please see our earlier legal update on the October Visa Bulletin.

Employment-Based Immigration Updates: The October Visa Bulletin and Public Charge Rule

On September 24, 2020, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) issued the highly anticipated October Visa Bulletin. October 1, 2020, marks the beginning of the U.S. government’s new fiscal year. Each year, there is a fixed number of immigrant visas available for employment-based and family-based categories. When the new fiscal year starts on October 1, a new supply of immigrant visas becomes available. Any unused family-based numbers from the prior fiscal year can be added to the employment-based visa allocations (and vice versa). This past year, family-based numbers were exceptionally low. The pandemic constrained consular operations and Presidential Proclamation 10014 suspended the issuance of immigrant visas, with limited exceptions. The DOS announced that it anticipates the FY 2021 employment-based visa numbers will hit an all-time high of 261,500.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

Employment Immigration: Continued Changes From USCIS and the State Department With COVID-19, Travel Bans and Processing

Business immigration in the United States continues the roller coaster ride of the last six months. With the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. immigration has been subjected to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office and consulate closures, travel bans, a three-month suspension of premium processing, and rumors of USCIS furloughs. This short article will address some of the most recent updates.

Continue reading “Employment Immigration: Continued Changes From USCIS and the State Department With COVID-19, Travel Bans and Processing”

New Executive Order Temporarily Suspends Entry of Certain Immigrants

On April 22, 2020, President Trump signed an Executive Order (“Proclamation Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the COVID-19 Outbreak”) temporarily suspending the entry of certain immigrants due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Executive Order, effective April 23, 2020, is valid for an initial 60-day period and may be extended or modified within this period.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

Business Immigration and Coronavirus: Latest Announcements from USCIS and DOL

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the Department of Labor (DOL) sent a flurry of operational updates late last week. These updates include a suspension of premium processing for FY2021 H-1B cap petitions, which was quickly followed by a suspension of premium processing for Form I-129 nonimmigrant visa petitions (H-1B, L-1, TN, O-1 and more work visas) and I-140 immigrant visa petitions. USCIS also sent an announcement relaxing certain “wet” original signatures on forms and an update relaxing some I-9 requirements.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.