D.C. Circuit Court ruled that loan proceeds qualify as cash under the EB-5 Program. Under a contrary interpretation, USCIS treats the investment as indebtedness rather than cash subject to additional requirements. Specifically, a loan may qualify as capital for EB-5 investment only if they are secured by assets owned by the investor. The court rejected such collateralization interpretation.
Please note that this article does not constitute a legal advice. We simplified the law to outline only one aspect of the latest development of EB-5 green card process. If you would like to obtain an investment (EB-5) green card, call our experienced EB-5 green card attorney at 480-425-2009 or schedule your consultation online.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) proposes to
change the process of selecting H-1B registrations for filing of H-1B cap-subject petitions from a random lottery selection to a wage-level-based selection process.
If more registrations were received during the annual
initial registration period than necessary to reach the
cap, USCIS would rank and select the registrations received generally on the basis of the highest OES wage level in the area of intended employment, beginning with OES wage level IV and proceeding in descending order with OES wage levels III, II, and I
These proposed changes would incentivize petitioners to offer higher wages
to H-1B workers or petition for positions requiring higher skills By changing the selection process, DHS would increase the chance
of selection for registrations or petitions seeking to employ beneficiaries at wages that would equal or exceed the level IV or level III prevailing wage. The DHS data shows that only 28.53% of H-1B petitions received in FYs 2018 and 2019 were filed for level IV and III wages.
The 30-day comments period starts on November 2, 2020.
Please note that this article does not constitute a legal advice. We simplified the law to outline the proposed changes to H-1B selection process. If you would like to obtain an H-1B status, call our experienced H-1B attorney at 480-425-2009 or schedule your consultation online.
On October 8, 2020, Department of Labor (“DOL”) published an interim final rule changing its method for calculating the prevailing wage rates in the H-1B program. DOL altered the level 1 prevailing wage from the 17th percentile of the OES wage distribution to 45th percentile on the false
assumption that the wages paid to individuals with a master’s degree represent the entry level wages for H-1B workers. Based on that upward adjustment, DOL increased the level 2 prevailing wage rate from 34th to the 62nd percentile, the level 3 prevailing wage from the 50th to the 78th percentile and the level 4 prevailing wage from the 67th percentile to the 95th percentile.
The upward adjustment of prevailing wage rates results in an overnight increase in wage rates and may likely result in many employers not hiring foreign workers. Lawsuits were filed seeking injunction to stop the DOL interim final rule.
Please note that this article does not constitute a legal advice. We simplified the law to outline only some proposed changes to H-1B rules. If you would like to obtain an H-1B status, call our experienced H-1B attorney at 480-425-2009 or schedule your consultation online.
Two Mexican citizens established a US company to import fresh produce from Mexico and sell it in the U.S. and Canada. Each member held 50% interest in the US company. Each member invested “substantial” amount of capital and put it “at risk”. The company rented office space and and warehouse, obtained a license for the US Department of Agriculture, a Blue book rating, registered trademark, hired customs broker and incurred marketing and warehouse expenses. The company created job opportunities for US workers – hired a full time sales representative and started interviewing for other positions. During its first season, the company generated very healthy profit and took steps to increase its marketing efforts to increase sales and visibility.
We established that the trade is already in existence, it is “substantial” and principally (more than 50% of total volume of international trade) between the US and Mexico.
Please note that this article does not constitute a legal advice. We simplified the law to outline one treaty trader (E-1) visa case study. If you would like to obtain a treaty trader (E-1) visa, call our experienced E-1 visa attorney at 480-425-2009 or schedule your consultation online.
The land border between the US and Canada remains closed until October 21, 2020 for “non-essential” travel. The travel restrictions do not apply to travel by air, sea and to freight rail. The “essential travel” includes but is not limited to: (i) U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents, (ii) international students, (iii) people traveling to receive medical treatment, (iv) emergency responders and public health officials, (v) truck drivers moving cargo or other individuals engaged in international trade, (vi) official government and diplomatic travel, and (vii) members of the U.S. armed forces and their spouses and children.
Most U.S. ports of entry interpret the restrictions that only B1/B2 travel is prohibited, while other ports of entry interpret the restrictions more narrowly and require proof of “essentiality”. The Customs and Border Protection is still performing routine adjudications of TN and L-1 petitions at the land ports of entry, although some land ports are requiring proof that the proposed employment is “essential”.
Canada’s Quarantine Act requires anyone who is permitted to enter Canada to self-isolate for 14 days following entry to Canada (unless they are flag-poling).
Please note that this article does not constitute legal advice. We simplified the law to outline the law. If you to schedule a consultation, call our experienced immigration attorney at 480-425-2009 or schedule your consultation online.
We started this process when a US citizen came to my office a year ago to petition for her fiancé in the Middle East. They met online and have been communicating remotely for several years. Last year, her fiancé traveled to the US and they met in person, which allowed us to file the petition for her fiancé. It took only 3 months to have the petition approved by the USCIS. Then, the case was sent to the National Visa Center and in four weeks the National Visa Center sent the case to the US Embassy in Jerusalem. The interview was scheduled in 10 weeks and the visa was approved. Then, the US Embassy put the case in administrative processing. At the end, the fiancé visa was issued, the fiancé entered the US and just married his fiancée and we are getting ready to file the adjustment application.
Please note that this article does not constitute a legal advice. We simplified the law to outline the marriage green card process and discuss the processing time of the marriage green card. If you would like to discuss if you may qualify for a marriage green card, call our experienced marriage green card attorney at 480-425-2009 or schedule your consultation online.
On July 22, 2020, the Department of State announced that certain business travelers, investors, treaty traders, academics, and students may qualify for National Interest Exceptions under Presidential Proclamations 9993 (Schengen Area) and 9996 (United Kingdom and Ireland).
Business travelers, investors, academics, J-1 students, and treaty traders who have a valid visa or ESTA authorization that was issued prior to Presidential Proclamations 9993 or 9996’s effective date or who are seeking to apply for a visa may qualify.
If you need help to apply for National Interest Exception, call an experienced immigration attorney at 480-425-2009 or schedule your consultation online.
A citizen of Sri Lanka attempted to enter the US illegally. He was apprehended just 25 yards from the border, and put in an expedited removal process. He did not show “credible fear” of persecution to avoid expedited removal. He invoked the writ of habeas corpus to obtain additional review of his asylum claim and ultimately to obtain authorization to stay in the US. Habeas has traditionally been a means to secure release from unlawful detention.
The US Supreme Court ruled that neither the Suspension Clause nor the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment requires any further review of his claims, and IIRIRA’s limitations on habeas review are constitutional as applied.
Please note that this article does not constitute a legal advice. We simplified the law in order to outline the latest US Supreme Court decision and its application to review or expedited removal orders. If you would like to discuss if you may qualify for asylum, call our experienced immigration attorney at 480-425-2009 or contact an experienced immigration attorney via our website to schedule a consultation.
On June 22, 2020, President Trump signed a proclamation suspending and limiting the U.S. entry of foreign nationals on H-1B, H-2B, J (as intern, trainee, teacher, camp counselor, au pair, or summer work travel program) and L visas and any individuals accompanying or following to join them.
The proclamation applies to those who are outside the U.S. on June 24, 2020 and do not have such non-immigrant visa or official travel document that is valid on that day.
The suspension and limitation on entry does not apply to lawful permanent residents, spouses and children of the U.S. citizens, essential workers, individuals whose entry would be in the national interest.
The proclamation shall expire on December 31, 2020, and may be continued.
Please note that this article does not constitute a legal advice. We simplified the law in order to outline the Proclamation. If you would like to discuss how does this Proclamation affect you, call our experienced Immigration Attorney at 480-425-2009 or contact an experienced Immigration Attorney via our website to schedule a consultation. We look forward to talking with you and helping you analyze the effect of the Proclamation and your alternatives.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, we are receiving questions from our immigration clients regarding whether or not they are eligible to seek unemployment insurance benefits in the event of a layoff, reduction in force or termination.
Are you eligible for unemployment insurance? It depends. Each state has different unemployment insurance eligibility requirements. In Arizona, for example, individuals filing a claim for unemployment insurance benefits must indicate that they are able to work, available for work, and actively seeking work. In order to be “available for work,” you “must be ready and willing to accept full-time work when offered without restrictions.” Consequently, it depends on your immigration status and applicable case law to determine if you are considered “available for work” when you are unemployed.
Thus, if you are only authorized to work in the U.S. for a single employer (e.g., holding H-1B or L-1 status) and lose your job, you generally would not qualify because you are not considered “able and available to work” when you are unemployed.
On the other hand, if you have an employment authorization document (e.g., adjustment of status applicants, spouses of E or L status holders,
certain H-4 spouses of H-1B workers, DACA recipients, refugee or asylee), you would generally be “available for work” for another employer. The same applies to lawful permanent residents. Undocumented workers are not “available for work” because they are not legally authorized to work in the U.S.
Please note at that this is only an overview of the unemployment benefits for immigrants and non-immigrants and is not intended as legal advice. IF you were laid off and would like to consult an experienced immigration attorney, calls us at 480-425-2009 or contact us via our website and we will help you determine the best options in your situation.