Immigration Blog

Wendy Barlow's picture

Pew Research Center Publishes H1B Statistics from FY 2010-2016

On March 29, 2018, the Pew Research Center published interesting statistics on the H1B program titled “East Coast and Texas metros had the most H-1B visas for skilled workers from 2010 to 2016.” The report looked at H1B visa approvals from fiscal year 2010 through fiscal year 2016, and broke down the numbers by metropolitan area. In this article, we will briefly examine some of the most interesting findings in the report.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

Closure of U.S. Consulate General in St. Petersburg

On March 31, 2018, the Russian government ordered the closure of the U.S. Consulate in St. Petersburg. Accordingly, the U.S. Government will no longer be able to conduct visa services from the former U.S. Consulate General in St. Petersburg. Because of this development, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) cancelled all interview and waiver appointments scheduled for the U.S. Consulate in St. Petersburg starting on March 30, 2018. In a news release, the DOS provided instructions for affected nonimmigrant visa applicants to reschedule their interviews.

Eliza Grinberg's picture

USCIS Website System Maintenance on Sunday, April 8

On April 5, 2018, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services announced that it will conduct system maintenance on April 8, 2018, from 5 AM until 6 PM (EST). The USCIS stated that some of its online tools may be unavailable during the system maintenance.

Eliza Grinberg's picture

DOS Proposes Social Media Vetting and Other New Information Collections for Visa Applicants

On March 30, 2018, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published two notices in the Federal Register (FR) regarding information collections for the Form DS-160 (and DS-156) and the DS-260. Individuals seeking nonimmigrant visas abroad must file the Form DS-160, while individuals seeking immigrant visas must fill out the Form DS-260. In both cases, the DOS proposes changes to the Forms DS-160 and DS-260. Interested members of the public have 60 days from the publication of the respective FR notices to submit comments on the proposed changes, which the DOS will subsequently take into consideration. The proposals have garnered interest because they both include questions regarding the social media histories of nonimmigrant and immigrant visa applicants. In this post, we will briefly examine the new proposed questions for the Forms DS-160 and DS-260 as well as other proposed changes relating to the limited use of the paper Form DS-156.

Eliza Grinberg's picture

Queens Immigration Attorney Faces Federal Charges for Asylum Fraud

On March 28, 2018, the office of the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York announced that it had charged Andreea Dumitru, an immigration attorney in Queens, New York, with asylum fraud and making false statements. The press release is titled “Queens Immigration Attorney Charged With Asylum Fraud.” The Indictment alleges that Dumitru participated in a scheme to file fraudulent Forms I-589, Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal, in connection with applications for asylum she had filed on behalf of her clients between 2012 and 2017. During this time, Dumitru is alleged to have submitted over 180 asylum applications in which she knowingly made false statements and representations.

Wendy Barlow's picture

New Citizenship Clause Case Involving American Samoa

On March 27, 2018, the Associated Press published an interesting report on a new lawsuit involving birthright citizenship. A group of plaintiffs led by John Fitisemanu, an American Samoan noncitizen national of the United States residing in Utah, filed suit in the United States District Court for the District of Utah arguing that American Samoans living in Utah derived citizenship at birth through the citizenship clause of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

Low Number of Refugees Admitted in First Half of FY 2018

On March 26, 2017, Stephen Dinan of The Washington Times reported that the Trump administration has resettled just over 10,000 refugees during the current fiscal year, which began on October 1, 2017. With the fiscal year half-over, this is on pace to be the lowest number of refugees resettled in any year since the current refugee resettlement system was established in 1980. The record lowest number of refugees resettled in any full fiscal year since 1980 is 27,070 in 2002.

Wendy Barlow's picture

Nielsen v. Preap: Supreme Court Grants Cert in New Mandatory Detention (236(c)) Case

On March 19, 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States granted certiorari in Nielsen v. Preap, Docket No. 16-1363. The case is on appeal by the Government from the decision of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in Preap v. Johnson, 831 F.3d 1193 (9th Cir. 2016). The Supreme Court will consider whether an alien who has been released from criminal custody but who was then was not immediately taken into immigration custody by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)is exempt from mandatory detention under section 236(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). In this article, we will briefly examine the Ninth Circuit decision and what the Supreme Court’s decision to take the case may mean going forward.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

USCIS Publishes New Form I-864 P, HHS Poverty Guidelines for Affidavit of Support (03/01/18)

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) released the new edition of the Form I-864P, HHS Poverty Guidelines for Affidavit of Support. The new edition of the Form I-864P is dated 03/01/18. The HHS poverty guidelines took effect for immigration purposes on that same day.

Eliza Grinberg's picture

Vietnam EB5 to Become Oversubscribed in April 2018

In the Visa Bulletin for April 2018, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) explained that the Vietnam Employment Fifth preference (EB5) category will become oversubscribed in May 2018. This will result in the establishment of a final action date for Vietnam EB5.

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