23 July 2020

Green Card and EAD Production Delays and How to Contact the Ombudsman’s Office for Assistance

In June 2020, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) reduced its capacity to print secure documents, including Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) Cards, aka Green Cards, and Employment Authorization Documents (EAD). The printing delay came after USCIS ended a contract with an outside company responsible for printing these cards. According to USCIS, it intended to hire federal employees to replace the contractors, but its financial situation resulted in a hiring freeze that has impacted the printing of these secure cards. Continue reading

22 June 2020

President Trump Issues Executive Order Expanding Entry Restrictions to Include H-1B Workers Through 2020

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

22 January 2020

Join Me For a Free Webinar: PERM Labor Certification – Navigating the Crucial First Step of the Green Card Process

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

Speakers:
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.

16 July 2019

Join Me For a FREE Webinar: “Know Your Options – Employment Based Green Card in the EB-1 and EB-2 Context”

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.

9 February 2019

PERM Wage Determinations Causing Significant Delay in PERM Filings

There are usually 3 steps to the employment based green card process: (1) PERM Labor Certification, (2) I-140 Immigrant Petition and (3) Adjustment of Status to lawful permanent resident. As part of the PERM Labor Certification process, an employer must obtain a Prevailing Wage Determination from the Department of Labor.

The Department of Labor issues a Prevailing Wage Determination based on multiple factors, including, but not limited to, the job description, the minimum requirements for the position, and the area of intended employment. An employer must offer at least the prevailing wage for the sponsored position.

In addition to obtaining a Prevailing Wage Determination, the employer must conduct recruitment to test the U.S. labor market to determine if there are any able, willing, qualified, and available U.S. workers for the job opportunity. Essentially, the employer must prove that the job opportunities, wages, and working conditions of U.S. workers will not be adversely impacted by hiring a foreign worker permanently for the job. This will involve the employer advertising for the sponsored position (see my PERM FAQs for more details on this process). The recruitment process will take a minimum of 60 days to complete.

Currently, we are witnessing an increase in Prevailing Wage Determination processing times, with wage determinations taking a minimum of 4 months to be issued. This in turn can cause a significant delay in filing the PERM Labor Certification application.  Continue reading

2 January 2019

Unprecedented Demand for H-2B Visas Leads to iCERT System Crash

The iCERT portal system, used to electronically file certain required applications for nonimmigrant and immigrant visas, crashed due to the overwhelming number of H-2B labor certification filings that occurred on January 1st, 2019.  Continue reading

27 November 2018

Fiscal Year 2018 PERM Statistics Released: PERM Labor Certification Filings Remain Steady

The Department of Labor (DOL) released PERM statistics for Fiscal Year 2018 (FY 2018), indicating that filed PERM Labor applications remained steady with only a slight drop, and India continued to top the list of PERM Labor applications certified that year.  Continue reading

4 August 2018

Qualifying for the Job Using Experience Gained from the Same PERM Employer: Infeasibility to Train Exception

When an employer files a PERM Labor Application, it must demonstrate that the beneficiary fully qualifies for the sponsored position.

Generally if experience is required, a beneficiary cannot use the experience gained with the sponsoring employer to qualify for the sponsored position. But, as with most things, there are exceptions to this rule:  Continue reading

13 July 2018

August 2018 Visa Bulletin Released: EB-3 India Now Only 2 Months Behind EB-2

The August 2018 Visa Bulletin has been released by the U.S. Department of State (DOS) with a few notable changes to cutoff dates:  Continue reading

14 May 2018

Qualifying for EB-2 Beyond the Advanced Degree – Exceptional Ability

There are 5 Employment Based immigrant visa preference categories that individuals may use to obtain lawful permanent residence (green card) in the United States. Frequently, individuals are sponsored for the Employment Based Second Preference category, referred to as “EB-2”.

Often, individuals qualify for the EB-2 category based on a U.S. advanced degree or its foreign equivalent (or a U.S. Bachelor’s degree or foreign equivalent and 5 years of progressive post-baccalaureate experience). Individuals who do not meet the advanced degree requirement are frequently sponsored for an EB-3 immigrant visa, which can mean longer wait times for a green card depending on country of birth. However, there is another option for an individual to qualify for EB-2 without an advanced degree if they meet the exceptional ability requirements.  Continue reading