Will Remote Work Outlast COVID-19?

In the last eight months, we’ve all become used to working from home, and remote work is likely to remain prevalent for many workers moving forward. The media keeps reporting that some firms have no plans to return to the office. Some companies are planning not to renew their leases and move to full-time remote working.

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New Statement of Changes to U.K. Immigration Rules, Including the New Post-Brexit U.K. Immigration System

On 22 October 2020, the United Kingdom government issued a Statement of Changes to the Immigration Rules that will come into force for visa applications submitted after 9 a.m. on 1 December 2020. Under the new rules, the visa application process for European Union (EU) and non-EU-nationals will be the same. Additionally, four new routes to obtaining a visa have been added, as well as numerous changes to other routes and concessions for the COVID-19 pandemic.

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.

EU Nationals Beware! Time Away From the U.K. Can Jeopardize Your Pre-Settled Status

For most people, the EU Settlement Scheme has largely lived up to the government’s promise of being generous and straightforward, but confusion over permitted absences is likely to cause some trouble. In particular, EU nationals who hold Pre-settled Status should be aware of the absence rules, particularly if they want to remain in the U.K. and plan to apply for Settled Status after five years.

Under current rules, if an EU national with Pre-settled Status is outside the U.K. for more than six months in any 12-month period during the five years it takes to qualify for Settled Status, they will generally have to start the five years all over again. And if they return after 31 December 2020, they may lose the right to upgrade to settled status entirely. Which means that these individuals will need to apply for a visa after 1 January 2021 under the new immigration rules.

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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.

Immigration Updates: Visa Processing, Travel Bans and the New USCIS Fee Schedule

Read on for an overview of updates on immigration and global mobility issues, including those involving visa processing at U.S. embassies and consulates, restrictions on travel and the new U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) fee schedule.

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