Deferred Action Program Now Effective as of August 15, 2012

On June 15, 2012, the Obama administration announced a new immigration program — Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. This program was announced to give young US immigrants without legal documentation, an opportunity to stop the threat of deportation proceedings and apply for a 2-year temporary work permit. Over 1 million individuals across the US could… Read more »

US Bill Introduced to Create a Green Card Option for All Entrepreneurs

House Judiciary Committee Chairman John Conyers (D-Mich.) and Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) on July 26, 2012 introduced the American Investment and Job Creation Act of 2012 (H.R. 6210), which would change immigration laws to permit entrepreneurs a path to permanent residence.  Currently, the only green card program available to entrepreneurs and investors is based on… Read more »

Deferred Action Update from USCIS

At a USCIS Stakeholder Conference on August 3, 2012, Director Mayorkas announced some additional details about the Deferred Action program which was presented on June 15, 2012. He confirmed that applicants will be able to apply as of August 15, 2012 if they meet the following requirements: 1. The person is under the age of… Read more »

Changes to E2 Investor and E1 Trader Visas in Mexico

As of June 20, 2012, the US Embassy in Mexico City announced two changes to the issuance of American Investor (E-2) and Treaty Trader (E-1) visas. The changes are to improve the efficiency for investors and traders, for the fourth largest US consular entity that issues investor and trader visas. As of July 1, 2012,… Read more »

H-1B Cap Has Been Reached: Other Options?

The H-1B cap was reached on June 11, 2012 for both the regular cap of 65,000 H-1B visas and the 20,000 cap, segregated for those who earned a US Masters Degree or higher. The cap was reached more than 5 months earlier than the previous fiscal year, which indicates the economy is stronger this year…. Read more »

Deferred Action Announced for Dream Act Kids: Am I Eligible?

The Obama Administration just announced today that certain undocumented individuals will be eligibile for deferred action. Deferred action is a discretionary agency action to NOT prosecute or deport a particular alien. It cannot be granted by the Immigration Judge – only through an agency District Director. It also permits people granted to obtain a work… Read more »

USCIS Now Allows Filing of I-601 Waivers in the US

On June 4, 2012, USCIS officially began to accept I-601 applications for applicants who previously had to file the I-601 abroad. The I-601 can now be submitted to a “lockbox” and the addresses are all posted on the USCIS website. An I-601 application refers to the waiver process required for those who have triggered an… Read more »

What is Up with Startup Visa 2.0? A Proposed Green Card Option for Investors in the US

Another foreign investor proposal came out of the Senate this past week due to the work across party lines amongst freshman Senators Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.). This is one of approximately 8 job creation proposals introduced already in Congress, as consistent economic data indicate how small… Read more »

How To Keep Your Green Card Status in Tact

For some it took a long time, lots of effort and/or money to finally obtain the “green card” or permanent residence. Now that you have a green card, what can happen to your status? Nothing? WRONG. Lots of things that can happen including abandonment of status and deportation if you are not careful about maintaining… Read more »

New Global Entry Program : How Some International Travelers Can Expedite Entry into The U.S.

Travelers entering the United States have generally faced long waits in immigration and customs lines. Thanks to a new Global Entry program administered by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency, certain pre-approved travelers can now clear customs quickly. Trusted travelers simply visit self-service kiosks located in major international airports throughout the U.S. and scan… Read more »

USCIS Updates on New Provisional Waivers and Centralization for I601s

Here are some updates based on Pilar Peralta Mihalko, Branch Chief International Operations Division, International, who spoke at the American Immigration Lawyers Association Texas Chapter Conference in Albuquerque New Mexico on April 13, 2012: Centralization of all I-601s Underway USCIS is in the process of centralizing ALL I-601 extreme hardship waivers that are filed by… Read more »

USCIS Comes out with Provisional Family Waiver Details

On March 30, 2012, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) posted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register to create an alternative process for certain immediate relatives of U.S. citizens to apply for and receive a provisional waiver of the unlawful presence ground of inadmissibility while still in the United States. The… Read more »

Traveling on the Visa Waiver?: The Nuts and Bolts of ESTA

What Is ESTA and How Does it Work? ESTA – the Electronic System for Travel Authorization – is a security enhancement system for those coming from Visa Waiver countries to determine eligibility to enter the United States prior to showing up at the US border. Launched in 2009, it is a more efficient and thorough… Read more »

Big News on I601 “Extreme Hardship” Waiver or Pardon: Some Are Moving Stateside

On January 12, 2012, the US Department of Homeland Security announced a proposed changed in a regulation governing the process for I601 “extreme hardship” waivers or “pardons” as they are referred to sometimes. This proposed change is HUGE and positive, given the byzantine nature of how it currently works today. First, an I601 Waiver is… Read more »

Denver Colorado in the Pilot Test to Stop Deportation Proceedings Against Certain Immigrants

Ask any Colorado immigration lawyer about the backlog of deportation cases in Colorado and nationwide currently on the dockets, and it becomes clear that the courts are overwhelmed. In an effort to streamline the deportation case reviews, and also to ensure that otherwise law-abiding undocumented immigrants are not painted with the same brush as felons… Read more »