Immigration Blog

System Issues Regarding Background Checks Delay Certain Naturalization Cases

Written by Alexander J. Segal on

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AILA explains that on November 28, 2016, “a computer coding error impacted the accuracy of the FBI background checks for about 15,000 … pending naturalization cases.” Of these 15,000 naturalization cases, approximatively 3,000 cases were pending at a USCIS field office “either to be interviewed, waiting on a decision post-interview, or waiting to be scheduled for an oath ceremony.” In response to the computer coding error, the USCIS cancelled oath ceremonies for “about 550 people” who were slated to take the oath on November 29, 2016. The USCIS has resubmitted the names of the 15,000 individuals impacted by the computer coding error to the FBI, and has asked the FBI to expedite new background checks.

Continuing Resolution Extends Key Immigration Programs Until April 28

Written by Alexander J. Segal on

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On December 9, 2016, the United States Senate passed a continuing resolution to fund the government through April 28, 2017, by a margin of 63-36. The continuing resolution will extend several important immigration initiatives until April 28, 2017, most notably the EB5 immigrant investor program.

In Choosing the Next Justice, Focus Only on Qualifications and Merit

Written by Alexander J. Segal on

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While I am excited, I can certainly understand why the President-Elect’s list causes consternation for those who favor Justices who take more of a so-called “living constitution” approach to Constitutional jurisprudence. While I obviously do not agree with those of a more liberal persuasion, I recognize the philosophical disagreement regarding legal interpretation and the role of the federal judiciary. However, I do not understand the peculiar critique of the President Elect’s list from the headline writers at USA Today, who titled an article by Richard Wolf, “Trump’s 21 potential court nominees are overwhelmingly white, male and from red states.”

AILA Publishes Comments on Proposed Revisions to the Form I-589

Written by Alexander J. Segal on

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On September 19, 2016, the Department of Homeland Security published a new proposed rule revising the Form I-589, Application for Asylum and for Withholding of Removal. The proposed changes were published in the Federal Register at 81 FR 64190. The proposed changes to the Form I-589 were open for public comment until November 18, 2016. On November 18, 2016, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) submitted its comments on the proposed revisions for the Form I-589.

Reactions to Castro's Death and How His Oppression of LGBTQ Individuals Affected US Immigration Law

Written by Alexander J. Segal on

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On November 25, 2016, the longtime dictator of Cuba, Fidel Castro, passed away at the age of 90. In this article, I discuss reactions to the death of the tyrant and how his brutal policies toward LGBTQ individuals led to a very important Board of Immigrations precedent decision for such individuals seeking asylum, refugee status, or withholding of removal in the United States.

DHS OIG Report on Green Card Issuance Issues

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On November 16, 2016, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) published the results of its audit of the ELIS system – implemented to automate the benefits process – as pertaining to Green Card issuance. This final report is a follow-up report to the DHS OIG’s March 9, 2016 report on problems with the ELIS system as pertaining to Green Card issuance and other related issues. In this article, we will examine the results of the DHS OIG report and what it may mean going forward.

New USCIS Fee Schedule (Effective December 23, 2016)

Written by Alexander J. Segal on

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On October 24, 2016, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a new fee schedule for the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in the Federal Register. The new fee schedule will take effect on December 23, 2016. Individuals must pay the new filing fees for any applications or petitions postmarked or filed on or after December 23, 2016. The USCIS will reject any applications or petitions postmarked or filed on or after December 23, 2016, that do not have the proper filing fees. The old fees must be used for any applications or petitions postmarked or filed before December 23, 2016.

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