• Hours & Info

    (562) 495-0554
    M-F: 8:00am - 6:00 p.m.
    Sat: 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
  • Social

  • Past Blog Posts

DOS Issues Update on Court Order Regarding Presidential Proclamation 10052

DOS announced that, due to the injunction in National Association of Manufacturers v. DHS, any J-1, H-1B, H-2B, or L-1 applicant who is either sponsored (as an exchange visitor) by, petitioned by, or whose petitioner is a member of one of the plaintiffs in the suit is no longer subject to Presidential Proclamation 10052’s entry restrictions. Members are reminded that, while individuals may no longer be subject to the proclamation, they may still face difficulty in obtaining a visa appointment because many embassies and consular posts are not currently operating at full capacity.

The Trump administration has extended visa restrictions to nonimmigrant visas.

On June 22, President Trump signed an executive order enacting a temporary ban on many types of nonimmigrant visas. The ban prohibits the issuance of new visas to applicants of H-1B visas, H-2B visas for non agricultural seasonal workers, J-1 visas, and L-1 visas. There will be exemptions for food processing workers as well as some healthcare workers. The new restrictions took effect on June 24.

A federal judge permanently blocked a Trump policy change in how DHS calculates an immigrant’s “unlawful presence.”

Several college presidents sued the Trump administration over a policy change that amended how a foreign national’s “unlawful presence” in the U.S. is calculated to include more time, making it more difficult for many to stay in the U.S. They argued that the change would harm students, scholars, and others who sometimes temporarily lost legal status while switching schools and jobs. On February 6, Judge Biggs ruled that the change “impermissibly conflicted” with immigration law, and issued a permanent injunction against the policy.

Specifics on ‘unlawful presence’ for F-1 and J-1 students

Starting August 9, 2018, a new policy goes into effect for F-1 and J-1 holders. They will start accruing unlawful presence the day after they violate their status, get an order from a Judge they are out of status, or get a ruling from Immigration their status is denied.

Need Training? J1 or H3

The J-1 and H-3 trainee visas are often underutilized and/or forgotten as useful options for employers who want to bring trainees to the United States for brief periods of time.

DOS J-1 Waiver Review Liaison Assistance

Process and guidelines for seeking liaison assistance with respect to 212(e) waivers at the DOS J-1 Waiver Branch.

Title: The Visa with Multiple Faces

 Question: I have tried to come to the United States on different types of visas, but have been denied at each turn. I cannot get a Visitor Visa and do not qualify for an H-1B work visa. I have also been denied the Student Visa. Do you have any suggestions?

Answer: The J Visa is very versatile. One can come in on the J Visa for many types of purposes. For example, the J Visa is available for students, professors and research scholars, short-term scholars, trainees, specialists, foreign medical graduates, international and government visitors, teachers, camp counselors and au pairs.

Question: Can you explain in some more detail what is involved with these categories?

Answer: For the students, a J is available for persons going to colleges that have been approved with a J Program. Students under certain conditions are allowed to work.

A trainee is one of the more popular uses of the J Visa. A trainee as an individual participating in a structured training program conducted by the selecting sponsor. The primary purpose of the trainee category is to enhance the exchange visitor’s skills in his or her specialty or non-specialty occupation through participation in a structured training program and to improve the participant’s knowledge of American techniques, methodologies, or expertise. The following areas are available for issuance of the J-1 Visa. Arts and culture; information media and communications; education, social sciences; library science, counseling and social services; management, business, commerce and finance; health-related occupations; aviation; the sciences, engineering, architecture, mathematics, and industrial occupations; construction and building trades; agriculture, forestry and fishing; public administration and law; and various other occupations as specified by the sponsor.

A J-1 specialist is defined as an individual who is an expert in a field of specialized knowledge or skill coming to the United States for observing, consulting, or demonstrating special skills. This category does not include professors, research scholars, short-term scholars, or foreign physicians in training programs. This type of J-1 can by used in lieu of the H-1B.

The au pair program permits foreign nationals to enter the United States for up to one year to live with a U.S. host family and participate directly in the home life of the family while providing limited child care services and attending a U.S. post-secondary educational institution.

Professors and research scholars may be sponsored as J-1 exchange visitors to engage in research, teaching, lecturing, observing, or consulting at research facilities, museums, libraries, post-secondary accredited educational institutions, or similar institutions.

Foreign medical graduates sponsored by accredited academic institutions with designated exchange visitor programs may come to the United States as exchange visitors for the purposes of observation, consultation, teaching, or research.

Teachers may be sponsored as exchange visitors to teach full-time at accredited primary or secondary educational institutions.

Secondary school students may come to the United States as J exchange visitors for up to one year to study at a U.S. public or private secondary school, while living with a U.S. host family or at an accredited U.S. boarding school.150 Participants must pursue a full course of study at an accredited educational institution for at least one and not more than two academic semesters.

A camp counselor is an individual selected to be a counselor in a summer camp in the United States who imparts skills to American campers and information about his or her country or culture. Participation in camp counselor exchange programs is limited to foreign nationals who are at least 18 years old and are bona fide youth workers, students, teachers, or individuals with special skills.

The summer/student travel work program is a program that authorizes foreign university students to travel and work in the United States during their summer vacations to involve the students directly in daily life in this country through temporary employment opportunities.

As you can see, the J Visa offers many options. While there may be a two-year foreign residency requirement, many times this type of visa offers the only hope for getting into the U.S.

Title: Any new Immigration Laws?

Question: I know that Congress has a ‘lame-duck’ session now. I was wondering if there were any new and recent developments in the immigration laws.

Answer: There has actually been quite a bit that has been recently signed into law by President Bush. Here is the summary of those recent laws.

On November 2, President Bush signed into law the “21st Century Department of Justice Appropriations Authorization Act.” It includes the following.

Waiver of Foreign Country Residence Requirement with Respect International Medical Graduates. Extends until 2004 the “Conrad State 20” program, which allows states to request waivers of the two-year home residence requirement of INA § 212(e) for certain J–1 physicians who agree to work in medically underserved areas for a period of at least three years, and raises the number of visas available per state from 20 to 30.

Posthumous Citizenship for Non-Citizen Veterans.: Extends the deadline for allowing family members to apply for honorary posthumous citizenship for noncitizen veterans who died while honorably serving the U.S. in past wars.

Extension of H-1B Status for Aliens with Lengthy Adjudications.: Recognizing that lengthy processing times by the Department of Labor have precluded some H-1B visa holders from being eligible to apply for a one-year extension of H status pursuant to the American Competitiveness in the 21st Century Act of 2000, this provision is intended to permit aliens who have labor certification applications caught in lengthy agency backlogs to extend status beyond the six-year limitation. As long as 365 days have elapsed since the filing of a labor certification application (that is filed on behalf of or used by the alien) or an immigrant visa petition, H-1B status can be extended in one-year increments. This will be true even if the alien has since changed his or her status or left the country. If an application for a labor certification or adjustment of status or a petition for an immigrant visa petition is denied, the extended H-1B status ends at that point.

Application for Naturalization by Alternative Applicant if Citizen Parent Has Died: Amends the INA to authorize a child’s grandparents or legal guardian to submit an application for naturalization on behalf of the child under section 322 of the INA where the child’s parent, who otherwise would be authorized to submit the petition, died during the preceding five years.

Also on November 2, the President signed the “Border Student Commuter Act of 2002”. The new law amends INA §§ 101(a)(15)(F) and (M) by creating a new border commuter nonimmigrant classification under the F and M visa categories for Canadian and Mexican nationals who maintain residence in their country of nationality and commute to the U.S. for full- or part-time academic or vocational studies. The legislation was triggered by a May 22, 2002, INS proclamation that commuter students residing in contiguous territory would no longer be allowed to enter the U.S. as visitors to attend school on a part-time basis.

President Bush, on October 29, signed the “Persian Gulf POW/MIA War Accountability Act” to provide refugee status to any alien (and his or her spouse or child) who: (1) is a national of Iraq or a nation of the Greater Middle East Region; and (2) personally delivers into the custody of the U.S. government a living American Persian Gulf War prisoner of war or individual missing in action. Excepted from the Act’s benefits are persons who are ineligible for asylum (including terrorists, persecutors, certain criminals, and individuals presenting a danger to the security of the U.S.).

On September 30, President Bush signed the “Foreign Relations Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2003” (H.R. 1646, Pub. L. No. 107–228). The Act contains numerous immigration-related provisions, including authorization for $4.97 billion in appropriations for the administration of foreign affairs in fiscal year 2003.

%d bloggers like this: