Monday, March 30, 2015

Latest USCIS Visa Bulletin Predictions

The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) recently met again with Charles Oppenheim to discuss the current demand and expected movements in various visa bulletin categories.

Charles Oppenheim is the Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division within Department of State (DOS). Please see the important details below:

EB2 India: As mentioned in the earlier blog post, DOS has started moving dates forward in EB2 India starting from February 2015 Visa Bulletin. The expected forward movement is 4-6 months for the next several months.

Since the dates are moving slowly, most of the visas would be allocated to EB3 India who are upgrading to EB2 India; since very few original EB2 India are remaining at this date. If the porting continues to increase, DOS is expecting dates to move forward by maximum Summer 2009 for FY 2015. This is similar to dates reached by EB2 India for FY 2014.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Workload Transfer within Service Center Operations


From USCIS: USCIS recently made two operational changes to balance our overall workload.

Workload Realignment

USCIS recently began transferring some Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, cases filed by lawful permanent residents for their eligible family members from the Vermont Service Center to the California Service Center.

If your case was transferred, USCIS will send you a notice listing the transfer date and where your case will be processed. Your original receipt number will not change and this will not delay the processing of your cases except for the additional time needed to transfer the file.

Effective March 27, 2015, USCIS will transfer the adjudication of some cases to balance our overall workload. The affected cases include those filed with the following forms:
  • I-129F, Petition for Alien FiancĂ©(e)
  • I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker
  • I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (employment and asylum-based only)
  • I-821D/I-765, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals/ Application for Employment Authorization (initial and renewal requests)
The filing location and instructions for these forms will not change. Please continue to file the forms at the address noted on the form instructions and on the USCIS website at www.uscis.gov.

How to Track the Status of Your Case

Monday, March 23, 2015

USCIS Will Accept H-1B Petitions for Fiscal Year 2016 Beginning April 1, 2015

From USCIS: On April 1, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin accepting H-1B petitions subject to the fiscal year (FY) 2016 cap. U.S. businesses use the H-1B program to employ foreign workers in occupations that require highly specialized knowledge in fields such as science, engineering and computer programming.

The congressionally mandated cap on H-1B visas for FY 2016 is 65,000. The first 20,000 H-1B petitions filed for individuals with a U.S. master’s degree or higher are exempt from the 65,000 cap.
USCIS expects to receive more petitions than the H-1B cap during the first five business days of this year’s program. The agency will monitor the number of petitions received and notify the public when the H-1B cap has been met.

If USCIS receives an excess of petitions during the first five business days, the agency will use a lottery system to randomly select the number of petitions required to meet the cap. USCIS will reject all unselected petitions that are subject to the cap as well as any petitions received after the cap has closed. USCIS used the lottery for the FY 2015 program last April.

Premium Processing for Cap-Subject Petitions

H-1B petitioners may still continue to request premium processing together with their H-1B petition. However, please note that USCIS has temporarily adjusted its current premium processing practice based on historic premium processing receipt levels and the possibility that the H-1B cap will be met in the first five business days of the filing season.

Friday, March 20, 2015

USCIS Temporarily Suspends Adjudication of H-2B Petitions Following Court Order


From USCIS: As of March 5, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is temporarily suspending adjudication of Form I-129 H-2B petitions for temporary non-agricultural workers while the government considers the appropriate response to the court order entered March 4, 2015, in Perez v. Perez, No. 3:14-cv-682 (N.D. Florida, Mar. 4, 2015).

Due to this decision, starting March 4, the Department of Labor (DOL) is no longer accepting or processing requests for prevailing wage determinations or applications for temporary labor certifications in the H-2B program. DOL is considering its options in light of the court’s decision. (See DOL Office of Foreign Labor Certification for more details.)

Because H-2B petitions require temporary labor certifications issued by DOL, USCIS has also temporarily suspended adjudication of H-2B petitions. USCIS will continue adjudicating H-2B petitions for non-agricultural temporary workers on Guam if the petitions are accompanied by temporary labor certifications issued by the Guam Department of Labor.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

USCIS Revises Form G-28


USCIS has published a revised Form G-28, Notice of Entry of Appearance as Attorney or Accredited Representative. The revised form G-28 is part of a final rule that became effective on Jan. 27, 2015.

About Form G-28

Attorneys and legal representatives accredited by the Board of Immigration Appeals use Form G-28 to notify USCIS of their legal representation in a given case. Form G-28 must be signed by the legal representative and by the applicant/petitioner/requestor. When a valid Form G-28 is on file, USCIS communicates with the legal representative.

New Form G-28 Changes

The revised Form G-28, with the 03/04/2015 edition date, includes two new boxes that allow the applicant/petitioner/requestor to tell USCIS whether they want to receive their notices and secure documents directly, or whether they want USCIS to send them to their legal representative.

Monday, March 16, 2015

May 2015 Visa Bulletin Predictions

For April 2015 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2015/03/april-2015-visa-bulletin.html

Please see May 2015 Visa Bulletin Predictions below (for both Family Based and Employment Based):

Quick Summary:

Family Based:

Family-Sponsored All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA- mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
F1 15AUG07 15AUG07 15AUG07 08NOV94 15FEB05
F2A 01SEP13 01SEP13 01SEP13 15AUG13 01SEP13
F2B 08OCT08 08OCT08 08OCT08 01MAR95 22APR04
F3 22FEB04 22FEB04 22FEB04 01MAY94 22AUG93
F4 08JUL02 08JUL02 08JUL02 08AUG97 22OCT91

Employment Based:

Friday, March 13, 2015

April 2015 Visa Bulletin Analysis

For April 2015 Visa  Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2015/03/april-2015-visa-bulletin.html

Please see below analysis of April 2015 Visa Bulletin:

EB1: All EB1 categories are current and should continue to remain current for fiscal year. Demand continues to be around 1650 every month (per the latest pending inventory).

EB2 ROW: This category continues to remain current. Demand in EB2ROW continues to be very low at an average of around 700 per month. 

EB2 China: EB2 China moved forward by 7 months in this visa bulletin. It is likely to continue to move forward around at a fast pace in the net few months.

EB2 India: EB2 India category also got a big jump in this visa bulletin. It moved forward by 8 months in this visa bulletin. Per the latest pending inventory, there around 1,000 I-485 pending applications before that date. In addition, there are applicants in EB2 who have not yet filed their application as well as applicants who will be porting from EB3 India to EB2 India.