Immigration Blog

New Orleans Immigration Court to Close from 8/16 - 8/22 to Prepare for Relocation

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On August 1, 2017, the Executive Officer for Immigration Review (EOIR) announced that it will temporarily close the New Orleans Immigration Court at noon on August 16, 2017. This closure is to prepare for relocation. The New Orleans Immigration Court will reopen at its new location on August 22, 2017.

John Kelly Becomes WH Chief of Staff, Elaine C. Duke Becomes Acting Secretary of Homeland Security

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On July 28, 2017, President Donald Trump announced via Twitter that the now former Secretary of Homeland Security, John F. Kelly, will succeed Reince Preibus as the 25th White House Chief of Staff. Effective immediately, the Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security, Elaine C. Duke, will assume leadership of the Department in an Acting capacity.

Senators Lindsey Graham and Dick Durbin Introduce Dream Act of 2017

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Senators Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) are co-sponsoring a new version of the “Dream Act.” On July 20, 2017, they released a section-by-section breakdown of their proposed legislation. In this post, we will briefly examine the proposed legislation and its long-term prospects for becoming law.

USCIS Announces Conviction in Immigration Fraud Scheme

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On July 17, 2017, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that Nimon Naphaeng, a native and citizen of Thailand who resided in Rhode Island, was sentenced on July 17, 2017, to 27 months in federal prison for running an immigration fraud scheme. Using both the internet and fliers posted in Thai restaurants, he had advertised himself as being able to help Thai nationals obtain employment authorization documents. In reality, Naphaeng was filing false asylum applications on behalf of these individuals without their consent or knowledge. In addition to his conviction, Naphaeng will likely face removal for his criminal conduct.

August 2017 Visa Bulletin

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On July 11, 2017, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) released the August 2017 Visa Bulletin. The monthly Visa Bulletin contains final action dates and filing dates for the family-sponsored and employment-based immigrant visa preference categories. Three days later, on July 14, 2017, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) determined that those seeking adjustment of status based on an approved family-sponsored or employment-based immigrant visa preference petition must use the final action dates from the DOS visa bulletin in August 2017. In this article, we will reproduce the family-sponsored and employment-based final action date charts for your convenience. We will also examine news and notes from the DOS visa bulletin pertaining to things that we can expect in the coming months.

Secretary Kelly Reportedly Does Not Commit to Defending DACA Against Potential Legal Challenges

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On July 12, 2017, Politico reported that Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly had told thirty members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus that, while he personally supported the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) program, the Trump Administration would not commit to defending it against potential legal challenges from Texas and several other states. Secretary Kelly reportedly explained that part of the reason for his reluctance in making a commitment to defending DACA was that government attorneys had suggested to him that DACA would not survive a legal challenge.

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