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Increasing uncertainty and unpredictability in H-1B adjudications Last week, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) received 201,011 H-1B petitions subject to the annual cap for Fiscal Year (FY) 2020. The Agency confirmed that on April 10, 2019, it completed its computer-generated selection process to select sufficient H-1B petitions to meet both the regular cap of 65,000 petitions and the advanced degree (master’s) cap of 20,000 petitions. In light of these numbers, employers have just over a 40%
What is happening with DACA? Where we are, and we where we could be heading… It has been almost one year since U.S. Attorney General, Jeff Sessions announced that the government was terminating Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a program which offers work permits and deportation relief to undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children. However, thanks to multiple lawsuits filed in Federal Courts across the country, challenging the legality of the termination of DACA, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has continued
USCIS Announces Completion of Receipt for H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions for FY 2019 On May 15, 2018, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it had completed its electronic data entry for receipt of all H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions selected for Fiscal Year 2019. USCIS previously announced on April 11, 2018 that it had completed the random selection process for H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions. The May 15 announcement indicates that each of those H-1B Cap-Subject Petitions which were selected under this “cap” have now
Unofficial reports that President Trump will end DACA program in 6 months On Sunday, September 03, 2017, Politico.com reported that the White House has “unofficially confirmed” that the Trump Administration will end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, with a six-month delay. As of today, it is unclear whether this reported decision to end the DACA program is confirmed. ' Also unclear is the timeline and terms for termination of the program. Another major open question is whether those with DACA
USCIS announces in-person interview requirements for employment-based lawful permanent residence applications, refugee/asylee relative petitions The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has announced that starting on October 1, 2017, it will begin “phasing-in” mandatory in-person interviews on employment based applications for adjustment of status to lawful permanent residence (Form I-485) and petitions for relatives of asylees or refugees (Form I-730). The USCIS announced it will also begin incremental expansion of interviews for other type of applications for immigration benefits. The USCIS announcement is a significant
USCIS issues new form I-485 with question related to controlled substance use On June 26, 2017, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) issued a new edition of Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. If an individual is eligible to apply for Lawful Permanent Residence status in the United States, he or she will file this form with USCIS. Starting August 25, 2017, USCIS will only accept this newest edition of Form I-485 (version date 06/26/2017). The new edition
H-1B Cap Lottery Selection is Complete for FY 2018 Petitions On May 3, 2017, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced that it has completed the lottery for all cap-subject H-1B petitions submitted for the Fiscal Year 2018 Cap. The annual limit for H-1B visas is 65,000 for foreign nationals holding a Bachelor’s Degree and an additional 20,000 for those holding a U.S. Master’s Degree. Between April 3, 2017 and April 7, 2017, USCIS received more than 199,000 H-1B
New version of Federal Form I-9 is now mandatory As of January 21, 2017, all U.S. employers are required to complete the new, updated Federal I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification Form, (version date November 14, 2016) for all newly hired employees. The new form I-9 can be found at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) website. Please do be sure that your company’s Human Resources team is using the correct version of the Federal Form I-9. For more information about
USCIS' Application Fee Increases Will Take Effect December 23, 2016 On October 24, 2016, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced fee increases for most immigration applications and petitions. USCIS operations are funded almost entirely through application fees and the agency is required to evaluate fees every two years. This is the first fee increase for USCIS in six (6) years, and we will see an average increase of 21% for fees for all applications and petitions. The Biometric Services
Kolko & Associates, P.C. helps to pave the way for Q-1 Teachers at Language Immersion Schools On October 24, 2016, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) issued a policy memorandum announcing that it designated Matter of R-C-C-S-D-, as an Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) adopted decision that binds all USCIS employees. As the law firm that spent a year and half arguing Matter of R-C-C-S-D-, with USCIS and the AAO, we are very proud that USCIS has taken this rare step of adopting the AAO decision. The
Expansion of I-601A Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver Process After months of anticipation, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced on July 29, 2016 a final rule to expand the I-601A Provisional Waiver process. The I-601A Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver was created in 2013 in an effort to reduce the time that family members are separated during immigrant visa processing. Prior to the current expansion, only spouses, parents, and children of U.S. citizens who could demonstrate extreme hardship to a U.S.
Keeping Your Address Updated with Immigration Moving can be a stressful and tiring event. Remembering to have mail forwarded and updating your address is often low on the priority list for people. But if you move, remember to tell your attorneys, too! We will want to update our records, as well as make sure that you are in compliance with the law when it comes to updating your address with the government. American immigration law requires non-citizens,

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U Visa Case Delays Cases for U non-immigrant status are taking an abnormally long time to process with USCIS currently. The backlog is frustrating for applicants and attorneys, alike. The delays are attributed to many factors, including an increase in petitions, a cap on visa limits, and a large backlog at the Vermont Service Center of USCIS. U non-immigrant status is available to foreigners who have been victims of certain crimes. Waivers available under the
USCIS receives 236,000 H-1B Cap Subject Petitions for Fiscal Year 2017 Today the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced that it received more than 236,000 cap-subject H-1B petitions for Fiscal Year (FY) 2017. The Agency also announced that on April 9, 2016, it conducted a computer generated lottery of these 236,000 petitions to select 20,000 petitions under the Advanced Degree Cap (U.S. Master’s degree or higher) and 65,000 petitions under the regular H-1B cap. The 150,000 remaining petitions have been rejected
Employers!  It’s time to consider H-1B Cap Subject petitions again… The H-1B nonimmigrant visa is an employer sponsored temporary work visa for foreign national professional workers in specialty occupations in the United States. Many employers depend on the H-1B program in order to ensure that they can hire foreign nationals with specialized skills and help their businesses thrive and grow. The H-1B process is common for U.S. employers and requires that the employer prepare and submit a petition to the USCIS on
USCIS Announces it has reached U Visa Cap for Fiscal Year 2016 On December 29, 2015, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced that it had issued the statutory maximum of 10,000 U nonimmigrant approvals (U Visas) for Fiscal Year 2016 (October 1, 2015 – September 30, 2016). Congress has set an annual statutory maximum of 10,000 available U Visas for qualified applicants. For the seventh (7th) straight year in a row, USCIS has reached the annual limit of 10,000 within the
USCIS Announces Changes to Immigrant Fee Processing System Today, August 31, 2015, USCIS announced that it has simplified the payment process for the USCIS Immigrant Fee. Since February 2013, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has charged an “Immigrant Fee” of $165.00 USD to individuals entering the United States on an immigrant visa. Individuals who apply for and receive an Immigrant Visa by processing their visa application at a U.S. Embassy or Consular Post abroad are required to

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Kolko & Casey, P.C. is a full service immigration and naturalization law firm providing professional legal services to individuals and businesses throughout Colorado, the Rocky Mountain West, the United States, and the World. Our professional staff speaks English, Spanish, Korean, and Portuguese and we can arrange for translators in any other language.