On Monday June 22, 2020, President Trump issued an Executive Order suspending entry into the United States of certain temporary foreign workers. The suspension is effective at 12:01 a.m. eastern daylight time on June 24, 2020 and will expire on December 31, 2020 (and may be continued as necessary).
Non-Immigrant Visa Categories the Suspension Applies To: Continue reading
Reddy & Neumann, P.C. invites you to join our Webinar: “PERM Labor Certification – Navigating the Crucial First Step of the Green Card Process” on Wednesday, February 12th, 2020 from 1:00pm to 2:00pm CST. Sign up here today!
PERM Labor Certification is often the first of three steps to the employment based green card process. Properly navigating this first step with your immigration attorney is crucial to a successful green card process for your employees.
For employers seeking to sponsor an employee for permanent residence in the United States, this webinar will provide insight into the maze of the PERM Labor Certification process. Specifically, this webinar will include:
• The importance of properly drafting the PERM job description
• Best practices for setting employer minimum education, experience, and special experience/skill requirements for the sponsored position
• How to properly document employee qualifications
• An overview of PERM recruitment requirements
• A discussion on Department of Labor PERM Audit Triggers
• A look at DOL processing times and what that means for certain employees on temporary work visas
• Also included: Difference between the EB-2 and EB-3 preference category and what that means for your employee, and Ability to Pay analysis
Krystal Alanis: Partner & PERM Practice Manager
Amanda Cardwell: Associate Attorney
Camille Joson: Associate Attorney
This Webinar is made available by Reddy & Neumann, P.C. for educational purposes only. Information provided in this Webinar should not be construed as legal advice for your specific situation nor does it constitute an engagement with Krystal Alanis, Amanda Cardwell, Camille Joson, or Reddy & Neumann, P.C. or establish an attorney-client relationship. For specific advice on your situation, please contact a licensed attorney.
As a result of the final rule on the public charge ground of inadmissibility, effective October 15, 2019, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will no longer accept current editions of the following forms if postmarked on or after October 15, 2019:
The new form editions of the identified forms have been revised to reflect the final rule on Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds. Unless otherwise instructed by USCIS at a later date, expect that the submission of these form editions on or after the specified date will result in rejection or denial of the application or petition.
The major issue now is that USCIS has not yet published the final versions of these revised editions. Although USCIS has published draft versions of these new form editions, we do not know how similar the draft versions will be to the final product. We will be following this closely and updates will be provided once available.
Reddy & Neumann, P.C. invites you to join our free webinar “Know Your Options – Employment Based Green Card in the EB-1 and EB-2 Context” on Thursday, August 8th, 2019 from 1:00pm to 2:00pm CST. The webinar will be presented by me and my colleague, Amanda Cardwell. Sign up here today!
For those seeking permanent residence in the United States based on employment, this webinar will provide insight into the different options available under the EB-1 and EB-2 immigrant visa preference categories. Specifically, this webinar will include:
A discussion of all subcategories within the EB-1 preference category for priority workers, including:
• How to qualify as an individual with Extraordinary Ability;
• How to qualify as an Outstanding Professor or Researcher; and
• How to qualify as a Multinational Manager or Executive.
A discussion of the EB-2 preference category, including:
• How to qualify as a member of the professions holding an Advanced Degree;
• How to qualify as an individual with Exceptional Ability; and
• How to qualify for the National Interest Waiver.
This Webinar is made available by Reddy & Neumann, P.C. for educational purposes only. Information provided in this Webinar should not be construed as legal advice for your specific situation nor does it constitute an engagement with Krystal Alanis, Amanda Cardwell, or Reddy & Neumann, P.C. or establish an attorney-client relationship. For specific advice on your situation, please contact a licensed attorney.
On June 4, 2019, The Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) announced the roll-out of the electronic filing of Prevailing Wage Requests in the Foreign Labor Application Gateway (FLAG) system. The FLAG system is being developed to improve customer service and modernize the administration of foreign labor certification programs. FLAG is designed to replace OFLC’s current iCERT System and will serve as the new application filing and case management system for all foreign labor certification programs.
FLAG System Implementation for Form ETA-9141 – Application for Prevailing Wage Determination
- Beginning Monday, June 10, 2019, OFLC will accept online submissions of the Application for Prevailing Wage Determination in the FLAG System covering all visa programs, including PERM Labor Certification. As of June 10th, stakeholders will no longer be able to submit Prevailing Wage Determination applications using the iCERT System.
- If Prevailing Wage Determination applications were submitted through the iCERT System before 12:00 a.m. Eastern Time June 10, 2019, the OFLC’s National Prevailing Wage Center (NPWC) will continue to process those applications and stakeholders will still be able to access their iCERT System accounts to check the status of applications and obtain Prevailing Wage Determinations.
OFLC has provided instructional videos to help stakeholders create and manage a FLAG System account and to prepare the Prevailing Wage Determination application for submission to the NPWC. To view these instructional videos, please visit the Prevailing Wage Program page on the FLAG System at https://flag.dol.gov/. New videos will be posted Friday, June 7, 2019.
OFLC has also provided an estimated timeline for the ability to file applications electronically in FLAG for H-1B, H-1B1, and E-3 programs (e.g., ETA-9035): https://flag.dol.gov/
USCIS announced today that it has completed data entry for all fiscal year 2020 H-1B cap-subject petitions selected in the computer-generated random selection process (lottery), including those selected under the U.S. advanced degree exemption. USCIS will now begin returning all H-1B cap-subject petitions that were not selected in the lottery and will issue an announcement once all petitioners are notified. Due to the volume of filings, USCIS cannot provide a definite time frame for returning petitions that were not selected.
Please note that USCIS may transfer some H-1B cap-subject petitions between the Vermont Service Center and the California Service Center to balance the workload. If your case is transferred, you will receive notification in the mail. After receiving the notification, please send all future correspondence to the center processing your petition.
USCIS has completed the H-1B cap random selection process. On April 10, 2019, USCIS used a computer-generated random selection process, “lottery,” to select enough H-1B petitions to meet the 65,000 congressionally-mandated regular cap and the 20,000 masters cap, under the advanced degree exemption, for fiscal year (FY) 2020. After completing the lottery for the regular cap, USCIS also determined that it had received enough petitions projected as sufficient to meet the master’s cap.
USCIS also announced that it received 201,011 H-1B petitions during this filing period, which began April 1st. This is an increase from FY 2019, where USCIS received 190,098 H-1B petitions during the filing period!
As per the new H-1B regulation, USCIS first conducted the lottery for H-1B cap-subject petitions submitted on behalf of all beneficiaries, including those that may have been eligible for the master’s cap. USCIS then selected a number projected to reach the master’s cap from the remaining eligible petitions.
We should begin to see receipt notices trickle in over the next few weeks. If you receive a receipt notice, this means your H-1B petition was selected in the lottery. If your petition is selected, it will be reviewed by a USCIS Officer. An Officer can send an approval (yay!), or a Request for Evidence. If your petition was not selected, USCIS will reject and return those petitions with filing fees, unless the petition is found to be a duplicate filing.
On April 5th, 2019, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it received a sufficient number of petitions needed to reach the 65,000 H-1B visa regular cap for fiscal year (FY) 2020. USCIS stated that it will next determine whether it received a sufficient number of petitions to meet the 20,000 H-1B visa U.S. advanced degree exemption, also known as the master’s cap.
The agency will reject and return filing fees for all unselected cap-subject petitions that are not prohibited multiple filings (please see my previous post: New Policy Memo Warns Against Multiple H-1B Cap Filings for the Same Beneficiary)
I will provide further updates here regarding the master’s cap, when available.
- Starting this year, USCIS will reverse the order of the H-1B lottery for the regular and master’s cap. The lottery will first be run for all H-1B cap-subject petitions filed, including those eligible for the master’s cap. USCIS will then run the lottery for the master’s cap by selecting a sufficient number of remaining eligible H-1B petitions needed to reach the master’s cap.
- USCIS will offer premium processing in a two-phased process during the FY 2020 cap season in order to better manage requests without completely suspending the process as the agency did last year. The first phase will include FY 2020 cap-subject H-1B petitions requesting a change of status and the second phase will include all other FY 2020 cap-subject petitions. For specific details, please see my previous post: USCIS Announces a Two-Phased Approach for Premium Processing of FY 2020 H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) made its annual announcement regarding the start date for the upcoming H-1B cap season. Specifically, USCIS stated that it will begin accepting fiscal year (FY) 2020 H-1B cap-subject petitions on April 1, 2019, and will reject any FY 2020 cap cases filed before April 1st. An additional announcement was made regarding premium processing for H-1B cap-subject petitions. USCIS will offer premium processing in a two-phased process during the FY 2020 cap season in order to better manage requests without completely suspending the process as the agency did last year. The first phase will include FY 2020 cap-subject H-1B petitions requesting a change of status and the second phase will include all other FY 2020 cap-subject petitions. Continue reading
Premium Processing is back for ALL H-1B Petitions! USCIS will resume premium processing on Tuesday, March 12, 2019. USCIS notes the following:
- If you have received a transfer notice for a pending H-1B petition, and you are requesting premium processing service, you must submit the premium processing request to the service center now handling the petition. A copy of the transfer notice should be included with your premium processing request. Failure to do so can lead to delays.
- If you received a Request for Evidence (RFE) for a pending H-1B petition, you should also include the RFE response with the premium processing request.
- If your petition was transferred and you send your premium processing request to the wrong service center, USCIS will forward it to the petition’s current location. However, the premium processing clock will not start until the premium processing request has been received at the correct center.
Here is a timeline of the premium processing debacle: Continue reading