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DHS and DOL Issue Joint Temporary Rule Increasing the H-2B Cap

DHS and DOL published a temporary rule in the Federal Register, increasing the H-2B cap for the remainder of FY2017 by an additional 15,000 visas, effective from July 19, 2017, through September 30, 2017. USCIS provided additional information regarding who can petition for these additional visas, how to file an H-2B petition under this one-time increase, filing information, and filing deadlines. Employers will be required to complete a Form ETA 9142-B-CAA, certifying that their business is in danger of suffering irreparable harm due to a lack of available temporary nonagricultural workers.

USCIS Returns Unselected FY2018 H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions

USCIS announced on July 19, 2017, that it has returned all FY2018 H-1B cap-subject petitions that were not selected in the computer-generated random selection process. If an H-1B cap-subject petition was submitted between April 3, 2017, and April 7, 2017, and a receipt notice or a returned petition is not received by July 31, 2017, please contact USCIS.

Washington Post: Democratic State Attorneys General Urge Trump to Keep DACA, Say It Has Boosted Economy

The Washington Post reports that New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas on Friday joined 19 other Democratic attorneys general in urging President Donald Trump to keep the under-threat DACA program. In a letter to the president, the attorneys general said the 800,000 recipients of the DACA program have been a boon to universities and employers. “They are our neighbors, co-workers, students and community and church leaders,” the letter stated. “And they are boosting the economies and communities of our states every day.”

Chasing Down the Rumors: EOIR IJ Benchbook No Longer In Use

The Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) confirmed that the Immigration Judge (IJ) Benchbook has been removed from EOIR’s webpage and is no longer being utilized. According to the agency, use of the IJ Benchbook was discontinued due to challenges in keeping the publication up to date with current case law

USCIS Reminder: Deadline for TPS Re-Registration for Haiti Is Monday, July 24

USCIS issued a reminder that the deadline for eligible Haitian nationals to re-register for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is Monday, July 24, 2017. The limited six-month extension of the TPS designation for Haiti runs from July 23, 2017, through January 22, 2018.

Should I apply for the E-2 or L-1 Business Visa?

 

Question: I have a business and want to either purchase or buy a business in the U.S. but do not know which one of the visas would be better. The choices that I have been given are the E-2 and the L-1. Can you clarify and/or help me make the decision?

 

Answer: Each visa has its advantages and disadvantages. Sometimes the E-2 will be better for somebody, while for another person, the L-1 might be better.   First, you must determine if you are from a country which has a treaty with the United States. Without a treaty, you cannot get the E-2. This would mean that for sure you are required and can only get the L-1.

 

Next, we need to determine if you have a business in your foreign country and whether you have been running the business for at least one year. Without a business, you cannot apply for the L-1 as that is a basic requirement for doing the L-1.

 

Question: How much do I have to invest for each one?

 

Answer: The E-2 generally requires around $75,000 to $100,000 U.S. investment. The L-1 is actually requires much less money. Many L-1’s can do an investment with only $20,000 U.S. Thus, if you do not have the necessary amount of money to invest in the business, then it would be the L-1 that you would apply and not the E-2.

 

Question: Can I just transfer money to my U.S. bank account  and will that be considered an investment?

 

Answer: No. That is just a transfer of money. You can get that money out anytime you want. An investment actually puts the money at risk where you cannot simply withdraw it anytime you like. Thus, if the business you want to begin in the U.S. is one that requires very little investment, or requires only a computer and online work, then the E-2 will not work. It would be better to do the L-1.

 

Question: Speaking of computer work, can I just use a room in my house I will rent there, or the garage for the work?

 

Answer: No. You must have a real ‘brick & mortar’ office. You can certainly rent an inexpensive office that shares the conference room, waiting area and kitchen will other tenants, but you must have a real office in order to have any hope of getting the E-2 or L-1 approved.

 

Question: Where do I file the E-2 or L-1?

 

Answer: The E-2 can be filed directly at the U.S. Consulate. You do not need prior U.S. Immigration approval. Thus, the filing fees, time for approval and review are generally less than with an L-1. The L-1 must get prior U.S. Immigration approval at USCIS. You could file by premium processing with will take much less time, but still it must be filed in the U.S. Once approved, it will be transferred to the Consulate upon which you are going to apply for the actual Visa. Of course, you could also do a change of status to E-2 or L-1 inside the U.S. However, once you leave, you will still need consular approval to re-enter the U.S.

 

 

 

Get Ready! Prosecutorial Discretions are being Revoked.

Question: I was in Immigration Court about 2 years ago and had no relief. However, I did not have any crimes either and my attorney made a motion for prosecutorial discretion. However, last week, I was arrested for DUI. I did not even have to plea as the case was dismissed. There was no evidence and I have no conviction. However, the arrest prompted ICE to revoke my Prosecutorial Discretion. What happens now?

Answer: Under U.S. immigration law, prosecutorial discretion (PD) refers to the power that ICE has to discontinue working on a deportation case. ICE can exercise its PD in many different ways. For example, ICE can join you in asking an immigration judge to close your case. Prosecutorial discretion used to be under Obama one of the most important aspects of Immigration Law. Immigration Prosecutors can choose not to prosecute a crime for which someone is arrested. They can decide to pursue less serious charges. They can basically decide not to issue the Notice to Appear and begin Removal Proceedings.

However, under Trump, this has changed. Prosecutorial Discretion is all but dead. It is very rarely being issued. There are, of course, situations where it is still merited, but nothing like before. Additionally, ICE is revoking grants of PD left and right. Therefore, it becomes necessary for you to know your rights.

You do not have to sign a voluntary deportation;
You can fight your case in front of the Immigration Judge; and
You can still get detained;
You can make a motion to get bonded out.

Therefore, you will note that ICE officials in many cases will not tell you the truth and will lie about what you can and cannot do. You MUST know that you can fight your case and the fact that the Prosecutorial Discretion was denied and/or revoked is no reason to give up. It just means you must fight your case now.

Question: But how can I fight? What should I do?

Answer: First, get a qualified Immigration Attorney. Each case is different. This means that depending on your situation, the particular forms of relief will be different. We might be able to apply for Cancellation of Removal or Adjustment of Status, or Waivers of a variety of different kinds, or Asylum, Withholding of Removal, Convention Against Torture or a number of other forms of relief. What is important is that you can fight your case. Simply because Trump has decided to issue orders revoking Prosecutorial Discretion does not mean your path has ended.

Immigration Attorneys across the country are fighting every order that Trump makes. He cannot simply make the Immigration and Nationality Act disappear, or the Code of Federal Regulations, or the Policy Memos or the Foreign Affairs Manual. We are a country of Laws and one man, even if President of the U.S., cannot simply dictate and make all of that disappear.

We are fighting one case at a time and ultimately, we will prevail and the tides will turn. Trump is already seeing through his Muslim Ban, that he cannot simply sign a paper and think it becomes law.

 

 

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