9 March 2015

H-4 EAD Specifics!

As many already know, on May 26, 2015, certain H-4 dependent spouses will be eligible to apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Now that we know more of the specifics, I wanted to share them with you!

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24 February 2015

H-4 EAD Rule Approved, Filing Begins May 26, 2015!

The long awaited H-4 EAD rule has been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and will go into effect on May 26, 2015! This means that eligible H-4 dependent spouses will be able to apply for employment authorization in 3 months!

Eligible individuals include H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B holders who: Continue reading

18 February 2015

Temporary Injunction Halts DAPA & Expanded DACA Programs, H-4 EAD Still on Track

Federal District Judge Andrew S. Hanen has issued a temporary injunction, halting the implementation of the expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) programs. These programs are aimed at providing work permits and legal protection to certain unauthorized immigrants.

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16 February 2015

H-4 EAD: Finish Line Ahead!

The long awaited H-4 EAD Rule will soon come to fruition. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is now in the final stages of the rule making process and has submitted the Final Rule to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). The H-4 EAD rule would make certain H-4 spouses eligible to obtain employment authorization. We are expecting that the OMB will complete its review of the Final Rule in approximately 30 to 60 days. Thereafter, the rule will be sent to the Federal Register for publication.

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6 February 2015

PERM Filing from Start to Finish: File in under 70 or 130 days?

Ever wonder why it takes so long just to file a PERM application or if there is a way to reduce the amount of time it takes to file a PERM application? When it comes to PERM, it is important to understand that (1) there is a mandatory recruitment stage that an employer must complete before the PERM filing can actually occur and (2) there are different options an employer has regarding the commencement of the advertisement/recruitment stage of the process.

An employer generally has 2 options when deciding when advertising/recruitment will begin. Both options have proven effective. It usually comes down to the particular circumstances surrounding each individual case and how quickly an application needs to be processed. Each of the options below carries its advantages and disadvantages Continue reading

26 January 2015

A Surge is Near! DOL Releases its First Quarter Stats on H-1B LCAs

Hi All! The Department of Labor (DOL) has released statistics on H-1B Labor Condition Applications (LCA) from the First Quarter (Q1) of Fiscal Year 2015 (FY2015). These statistics include the number of LCAs received, top occupations, states, and employers, as well as the number of certified, denied, and withdrawn LCAs, number of positions requested and certified, and percentage of applications timely processed.

Based on the data for Q1, FY2015, we are already seeing more LCAs filed than last year. This means that we will again see a surge of LCA filings for the second quarter (January 01, 2015 to March 31, 2015) with the additional preparation for the H-1B cap season that will begin on April 01, 2015. For example, last fiscal year “LCAs received” jumped from 67,641 in Q1 to 231,401 in Q2.

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12 December 2014

Say YES to PERM, Part Deux!

As you all may remember, my very first blog post included an explanation of the benefits of getting the PERM labor certification process started (kick-off to the employment-based green card process) once your employer offers a permanent position to you. Some of the benefits I mentioned are: Continue reading

21 November 2014

EXECUTIVE ACTION ANNOUNCED! EMPLOYMENT BASED INCLUDED!

The President has briefed the nation regarding the much anticipated executive action on immigration! As expected, the President addressed plans that will impact the employment based immigration realm. He has provided us with a general outline of his plan, which will be signed tonight.  Here are some of the expected plans/areas to be addressed: Continue reading

19 November 2014

ANTICIPATION LOOMS: EXECUTIVE ACTION ON IMMIGRATION NEARS!

President Obama is expected to announce executive action on immigration this Thursday. The word around the Hill has focused mainly on the undocumented immigrants, but it is likely that the President’s executive action will include plans to address employment based immigration as well.

If President Obama decides to issue executive orders regarding employment based immigration, there are a few issues that he may touch on: Continue reading

6 November 2014

India Tops List for Certified PERM Applications in 2014!

Hi All! The Department of Labor (DOL) issued Permanent Labor Certification statistics for Fiscal Year 2014 (FY2014) that I thought I would share with you!

The DOL was quite busy with PERM applications in FY2014!  We also see them getting the job done with about a 6 month turnaround for initial review once the application is filed, which is much better than last year when it was taking about 8 months!

For FY2014 (October 1st, 2013 to September 30, 2014), the DOL received 74,936 Permanent Labor Certification applications, with the 4th quarter showing the highest amount received for FY2014.

Total, in FY2014, 62,633 cases have been certified, 4,349 denied, and 4,016 withdrawn.

Further, about 59,901 applications were pending as of 09/30/2014. The processing status of active PERM applications is as follows: Continue reading