Administration Aiming to Restrict Green Card Eligibility for Those on Public Aid

On Saturday, September 22, 2018, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) formally announced that it intends to introduce a notice of proposed rulemaking titled “Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds” to amend the regulations governing “public charge” determinations for individuals applying for U.S. permanent residence (“green cards”). In the notice DHS states that the proposed rule is intended to provide a standard for determining whether an applicant for a green card is likely at any time to become a public charge (e.g., that they will be unable to financially support themselves while in the U.S.) and seeks to provide a more comprehensive framework under which the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) will consider public charge inadmissibility.

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USCIS Announces Further Measures to Detect H-1B Visa Fraud and Abuse

Today, Monday April 3, 2017, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced multiple measures to “deter and detect H-1B visa fraud and abuse,” including targeted site visits and a new avenue for H-1B visa holders and U.S. workers to report potential violations of the H-1B visa program.

Effective immediately, USCIS will also take a more targeted approach when making site visits to H-1B petitioners and the worksites of H-1B employees. USCIS has indicated that the targeted site visits will focus on:

  • Cases where USCIS cannot validate the employer’s basic business information through commercially available data;
  • H-1B-dependent employers (those who have a high ratio of H-1B workers as compared to U.S. workers); and
  • H-1B workers who work offsite at another company or organization’s location.

USCIS will continue to conduct random, unannounced administrative site visits nationwide. However, USCIS has indicated that the addition of these targeted site visits will allow the Agency to focus resources where they believe fraud and abuse of the H-1B program may be more likely to occur.

The Agency further clarified that the site visits are not meant to target nonimmigrant employees for any kind of criminal or administrative action, but rather to identify employers who are abusing the H-1B visa program.

USCIS has also established an email address which will allow individuals (including both American workers and H-1B workers who suspect they or others may be the victim of H-1B fraud or abuse) to submit tips, alleged violations and other relevant information about potential H-1B fraud or abuse.

D&S Immigration Update Regarding Trump Administration's Revised Executive Order: "Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States"

President Trump has issued a revised version of his judicially-suspended January 27, 2017 Executive Order (EO) titled "Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States". The newly-issued order revokes the earlier EO and will go into effect at 12:01 am on March 16, 2017. Among other changes, the new Order removes Iraq from the list of banned countries and expressly exempts from the 90-day ban visa holders, those lawfully present in the U.S., and lawful permanent residents from the six (6) designated countries. Additionally, in an apparent effort to avoid the widespread confusion and implementation difficulties faced following the issuance of the previous order, the new version is accompanied by a fact sheet and a Q&A provided by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

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D&S Immigration Update: DHS Issues Implementing Memoranda In Response to Immigration Executive Orders

In late January 2017, President Donald J. Trump issued a series of Executive Orders (EOs) dealing with immigration and border security.  In response to these EOs, this week, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued several Implementation Memoranda and Fact Sheets to provide additional clarity on how they will implement the President’s directives.

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