Immigration Blog

Wendy Barlow's picture

Fourth Circuit Upholds District Court Preliminary Injunction Against "Travel Ban" (Injunction Remains Stayed)

On February 15, 2018, a majority of an en banc United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upheld the decision of the United States District Court for the District of Maryland issuing a preliminary injunction against portions of the entry restrictions on nationals from six countries in President Donald Trump’s September 24, 2017 Presidential Proclamation on Establishment Clause grounds. However, the injunction remains stayed pending the Supreme Court's consideration of the issue, which it has already taken on appeal from a separate Ninth Circuit decision upholding a preliminary injunction against the travel restrictions.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

March 2018 Visa Bulletin

On February 9, 2018, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) published the March 2018 Immigrant Visa Bulletin. Eleven days later, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) determined that the beneficiaries of approved family-sponsored immigrant visa petitions must use the filing date charts from the March 2018 Visa Bulletin whereas the beneficiaries of approved employment-based immigrant visa petitions must use the final action date charts. In this article, we will examine the relevant charts from the DOS and USCIS for beneficiaries of approved immigrant visa petitions in March 2018. We will also go through news and notes included with the March 2018 visa bulletin. This article also includes a PDF of the outgoing February 2018 Visa Bulletin.

Eliza Grinberg's picture

Supreme Court Denies Petition for Cert Before Judgment in DACA Case

On January 9, 2018, Judge William Alsup of the United States District Court for the District of Northern California preliminarily enjoined the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program on multiple grounds. On January 12, 2018, Judge Alsup issued a second decision dismissing the Government’s motions to dismiss the case. On January 18, 2018, the Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a notice of appeal with the Supreme Court, asking the Court to take the case before final judgment. The Supreme Court dismissed the petition without prejudice and stated that it held the expectation that the case would be decided on appeal expeditiously.

Wendy Barlow's picture

Second Preliminary Injunction Against DACA Rescission

On February 13, 2018, Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York issued a nationwide preliminary injunction against the rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Because the Trump Administration is already complying with the court order from the United States District Court for the Northern District of California which is identical in scope, the preliminary injunction coming from the Eastern District of New York will not change the current situation regarding DACA.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

Defense Secretary Mattis Indicates that DOD is Looking for Ways to Save MAVNI

As of February 21, 2018, the Military Accessions Vital to the National Interest (MAVNI) program remains suspended, and there is no official word on when or even if the program will be resumed. However, for those left in limbo, there have been two somewhat encouraging reports from the past several months.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

Driver's Licences/IDs Issued in American Samoa No Longer Accepted for Commercial Air Travel

Beginning on February 5, 2018, the Transportation Security Agency (TSA) will no longer accept American Samoan-issued driver’s licenses and identification cards as proof of identity to board commercial aircraft. This is because American Samoa was deemed non-compliant with the REAL ID act, which sets standards for state-issued identification documents, and it was not granted an extension for becoming compliant. American Samoa is the only one of the 56 states and territories to be deemed non-compliant and not granted an extension.

Eliza Grinberg's picture

Five New Immigration Judges Sworn in on February 8, 2018

On February 8, 2018, the Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) announced the swearing in of five new immigration judges. The five new immigration judges, who will sit on five separate immigration courts (Elizabeth Immigration Court; Atlanta Immigration Court; Portland Immigration Court; San Francisco Immigration Court; and Adelanto Immigration Court), were appointed by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. The investiture ceremony for the new immigration judges was held on February 8, 2018. We will list the five new immigration judges with brief biographical information.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

BIA Amicus Invitation No. 18-02-14: “Removability & Aggravated Felony Definitions”

On February 14, 2018, the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) issued Amicus Invitation No. 18-02-14, titled “Removability & Aggravated Felony Definitions.” The purpose of the BIA Amicus Invitation is to invite interested members of the public to file amicus briefs with the BIA on the issues presented in the invitation. Responses to the BIA Amicus Invitation are due by March 16, 2018. We will review the issues presented in this post.

Wendy Barlow's picture

Indictments in Alleged P3 Visa Fraud Scheme

On February 8, 2018, a 15-count indictment was unsealed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York against three individuals – Stella Boyadjian, Hrachya Atoyan, and Diana Grigoryan (aka “Dina Akopovna”) for their roles in a multi-year visa fraud scheme involving the P3 visa program. The purpose of their visa fraud scheme was to bring Armenian citizens into the United States for profit. The 15-counts against the defends included “multiple counts of visa fraud and with conspiring to defraud the United States, commit visa fraud and illegally bring aliens into the United States.” Boyadjian and Grigoryan also face money laundering charges that are related to the visa fraud scheme. Boyadijian was also charged with identity theft.

Eliza Grinberg's picture

DOL Will Not Begin Releasing H2B Temporary Labor Certifications Until February 20, 2018

On February 7, 2018, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) will not begin releasing H2B temporary labor certifications until February 20, 2018. This is “due to an unprecedented number of applications.”

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