Friday, February 23, 2018

Department of Justice Files Complaint to Denaturalize Diversity Visa Recipient Who Obtained Naturalized Citizenship After Failing to Disclose Two Prior Orders of Removal

From USCIS News:

The Department of Justice yesterday filed a complaint in the Eastern District of Michigan to revoke the naturalized U.S. citizenship of Humayun Kabir Rahman fka Md Humayun Kabir Talukder aka Ganu Miah aka Shafi Uddin. The case was referred to the Department of Justice by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and identified as a part of Operation Janus (PDF).

The complaint alleges Humayun Kabir Rahman arrived in the United States in February 1992 at John F. Kennedy International Airport, claiming his true name was Ganu Miah while in possession of a passport that did not belong to him. He was paroled into the United States so he could seek asylum, and his application was referred to the immig


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Thursday, February 22, 2018

USCIS Expands Credit Card Payment Option for Fees

From USCIS News:

WASHINGTON - U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that it will now accept credit card payments for filing most of its forms.

The new payment option is available for the 41 fee-based forms processed at USCIS Lockbox facilities. To pay by Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover, applicants will need to use Form G-1450, Authorization for Credit Card Transaction (PDF, 252 KB)s.

USCIS will enter credit car


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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Three Individuals Indicted for Visa Fraud Scheme for Profit

From USCIS News:

USCIS Assisted in Investigation of Defendants who Provided Armenian Nationals with Fake Dance Certificates and Staged Photos in Traditional Costumes to Qualify for P-3 Visa Program for Entertainers

NEW YORK - A 15-count indictment was unsealed yesterday in federal court in Brooklyn charging Stella Boyadjian, Hrachya Atoyan and Diana Grigoryan, also known as “Dina Akopovna,” for their roles in a multi-year visa fraud scheme that brought Armenian citizens into the United States for profit. The defendants are charged with multiple counts of visa fraud and with conspiring to defraud the United States, commit visa fraud and illegally bring aliens into the United States. Boyadjian and Grigoryan are also charged with related money laundering charges, and Boyadjian is charged with aggravated


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Tuesday, February 20, 2018

USCIS to Take Action to Address Asylum Backlog

From USCIS News:

Agency Will Focus on Processing Recently Filed Applications

Graph of Asylum Receipts and Pending Asylum CaseloadWASHINGTON — U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that the agency will schedule asylum interviews for recent applications ahead of older filings, in an attempt to stem the growth of the agency’s asylum backlog.

USCIS is responsible for overseeing the nation’s legal immigration system, which includes adjudicating asylum claims. The agency currently faces a crisis-level backlog of 311,000 pending asylum cases as of Jan. 21, 2018, making the asylum system increasingly vulnerable to fraud and abuse. This backlog has grown by more


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Monday, February 19, 2018

Peryòd Re-Enskripsyon Louvri Kounye pou Ayisyen ak Estati Pwoteksyon Tanporè

From USCIS News:

 WASHINGTON - Sèvis Sitwayènte ak Imigrasyon Etazini (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, USCIS) te anonse jodiya benefisyè Estati Pwoteksyon Tanporè (Temporary Protected Status) anba klasifiasyon Ayiti ki vle kenbe estati yo jiska fen dat pwogram nan 22 jiyè 2019, dwe re-enskri ant 18 janvye 2018 ak 19 mas 2018. Nou te pibliye pwosedi pou re-enskripsyon, ak kijan pou renouvle papye otorizasyon travay, nan Rejis Federal la  ak nan uscis.gov/tps.

Tout aplikan dwe soumèt F&ogra


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Friday, February 16, 2018

La période de réinscription est maintenant ouverte pour les Haïtiens bénéficiant du statut de protection temporaire

From USCIS News:

WASHINGTON— Les Services de la Citoyenneté et de l'Immigration des États-Unis (l'USCIS) ont annoncé aujourd'hui que les bénéficiaires actuels du statut de protection temporaire (TPS) sous la désignation d'Haïti souhaitant maintenir ce statut jusqu'à la date d'expiration du programme, le 22 juillet 2019, doivent se réinscrire entre le 18 janvier 2018 et le 19 mars 2018. Les démarches de réinscription, y compris les modalités pour renouveler les documents d'autorisation d'emploi, ont été publiées dans le Federal Register (registre fédéral) et sur uscis.gov/tps

Tous les candidats doivent soumettre le formulaire I-821, la Demande de statut d


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Visa Bulletin April 2018 Predictions

For the official March 2018 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://www.mygcvisa.com/visa-bulletin/2018/visa-bulletin-march-2018.aspx

Please see April 2018 Visa Bulletin Predictions below (for both Family Based and Employment Based):

Family Based:
Final Action Dates
Dates For Filing Applications
"Final Action Date" is the date when when USCIS/DOS may render their final decision on submitted applications. Your priority date should be before this date.
Family-
Sponsored 
All Chargeability 
Areas Except
Those Listed
CHINA-mainland 
born
INDIAMEXICOPHILIPPINES
F115APR1115APR1115APR1101SEP9601DEC05
F2A15APR1615APR1615APR1601APR1615APR16
F2B15MAR1115MAR1115MAR1108NOV9615SEP06
F301JAN0601JAN0601JAN0608JUL9508APR95
F408SEP0408SEP0415FEB0401DEC9701JAN95
"Date for Filing Application" is the date when you can submit I-485/NVC applications to USCIS/DOS. Your priority date should be before this date.
Family-
Sponsored 
All Chargeability 
Areas Except
Those Listed
CHINA-mainland 
born
INDIAMEXICOPHILIPPINES
F101FEB1201FEB1201FEB1215NOV9715NOV07
F2A15JUN1715JUN1715JUN1715JUN1715JUN17
F2B15SEP1115SEP1115SEP1115JAN9715SEP07
F308DEC0508DEC0508DEC0501JUN9701JUL95
F408FEB0508FEB0515JUL0401MAR9801APR95


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Thursday, February 15, 2018

February 2018 Preliminary Injunction on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

From USCIS Alerts:

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Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Re-Registration Period Now Open for Haitians with Temporary Protected Status

From USCIS News:

Employment Authorization for Haitians with TPS Automatically Extended Until July 21, 2018

WASHINGTON—U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that current beneficiaries of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) under Haiti’s designation who want to maintain that status through the program’s termination date of July 22, 2019, must re-register between Jan. 18, 2018, and March 19, 2018. Re-registration procedures, including how to renew employment authorization documentation, have been published in the Federal Register and on uscis.gov/tps.

All applica


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Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Re-Registration Period Now Open for Salvadorans with Temporary Protected Status

From USCIS News:

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that current beneficiaries of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) under El Salvador’s designation who want to maintain their status through the effective  termination date of Sept. 9, 2019, must re-register between Jan. 18, 2018, and March 19, 2018.

Re-registration procedures, including how to renew employment authorization documents, have been published in the Federal Register and on uscis.gov/tps.

All applicants must submit Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status. Ap


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Monday, February 12, 2018

Surge in H-2B Petitions Possible for Second Half of FY 2018

From USCIS Alerts:

The U.S. Department of Labor announced it will not begin releasing H-2B temporary labor certifications until Feb. 20, 2018, due to an unprecedented number of applications. As a result of this demand, USCIS may receive more H-2B nonimmigrant worker petitions than there are H-2B visas available in the second half of Fiscal Year 2018.

USCIS is maintaining a flexible approach to this issue, which may include randomly selecting petitions received on the final receipt date to ensure that we allocate H-2B visas fairly and do not exceed the cap. More information will be forthcoming.


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Visa Bulletin March 2018

For February 2018 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://www.mygcvisa.com/visa-bulletin/2018/visa-bulletin-february-2018.aspx

March 2018 Visa Bulletin has been officially released (valid from March 1 to March 31 only). Please see below for more details.

Family Based:
Final Action Dates
Dates For Filing Applications
"Final Action Date" is the date when when USCIS/DOS may render their final decision on submitted applications. Your priority date should be before this date.
Family-
Sponsored 
All Chargeability 
Areas Except
Those Listed
CHINA-mainland 
born
INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES 
F1 22MAR11
22MAR11 22MAR11 22JUL96 15OCT05
F2A 22MAR16 22MAR16 22MAR16 01MAR16 22MAR16
F2B 01MAR11 01MAR11 01MAR11 15OCT96 08SEP06
F3 15DEC05 15DEC05 15DEC05 22JUN95  22MAR95
F4 22AUG04 22AUG04 01FEB04 15NOV97 22NOV94
"Date for Filing Application" is the date when you can submit I-485/NVC applications to USCIS/DOS. Your priority date should be before this date.
Family-
Sponsored 
All Chargeability 
Areas Except
Those Listed
CHINA-
mainland 
born
INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES 
F1 01JAN12 01JAN12 01JAN12 08SEP97 01OCT07
F2A 01MAY17 01MAY17 01MAY17 01MAY17 01MAY17
F2B 01SEP11 01SEP11 01SEP11 01JAN97 01SEP07
F3 01DEC05 01DEC05 01DEC05 01APR97 15JUN95
F4 22JAN05 22JAN05 22JUN04 08FEB98 01MAR95


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Visa Bulletin March 2018 Special Notes

For the official March 2018 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://www.mygcvisa.com/visa-bulletin/2018/visa-bulletin-march-2018.aspx

Apart from posting current dates, State Department has also added special notes to Visa Bulletin mentioned above. Please see full details below:

D. SPECIAL IMMIGRANT (SI) TRANSLATOR CATEGORY VISA AVAILABILITY

Given the limited availability of visa numbers and the existing demand, the Department expects to reach the FY-2018 annual limit of 50 Special Immigrant Visas in the SI category early this year. As a result, it has been necessary to maintain a March Final Action Date of April 22, 2012. It is likely that number use will require the SI category to become "unavailable" in the coming months. Once the annual limit of 50 visas is reached, further issuances in the SI category will not be possible until October 2018, under the FY-2019 annual limit. The SQ Special Immigrant Visa category for certain Iraqi and Afghan nationals employed by or on behalf of the U.S. government in Iraq or Afghanistan is not affected and remains current.

E. VISA AVAILABILITY IN THE COMING MONTHS

Continu


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Friday, February 9, 2018

USCIS is Strengthening Screening for Family Members Abroad Seeking to Join Refugees in the United States

From USCIS Alerts:

On Feb. 1, USCIS and the Department of State implemented new procedures to ensure that all individuals admitted as refugees receive similar, thorough vetting – whether they are principal refugees, accompanying family members, or following-to-join refugees.

A following-to-join refugee is the spouse or child of a principal refugee who lives abroad and wishes to join the principal refugee in the United States.

These measures resulted from the 120-day review mandated by section 6(a) of Executive Order 13780 (PDF), which specifically directed the Department of Homeland Security to determine what additional procedures should be implemented to ensure that individuals seeking admission as refugees do not p


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Thursday, February 8, 2018

International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation

From USCIS Alerts:

Today, on the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services joins other U.S. government agencies and the global community in calling for an end to the practice of Female Genital Mutilation or Cutting (FGM/C).

The United Nations reports that more than 200 million women and girls have undergone some form of FGM/C. On Zero Tolerance Day, the international community breaks the silence around the harm FGM/C causes to women and girls worldwide. We stand together to recognize that FGM/C is a serious human rights abuse that can have a significant impact on women and girls’ health.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has estimated that more than 500,000 women and girls in the United States are at risk of or have been subjected to FGM/C. Some women and girls


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Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Tools Outage

From USCIS Alerts:

USCIS will conduct system maintenance on Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018, from 5 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Eastern). 

During this time, our online tools may be unavailable, including:

  • Check My Case Status
  • e-Request
  • Change of Address Online
  • Check Processing Times
  • Civil Surgeon Locator
  • FOIA Status Check
  • Office Locator
  • Forms by Mail

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Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Processing Change for Certain Form I-730 Petitions

From USCIS Alerts:

On January 12, 2018, USCIS changed the processing location for certain Form I-730, Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition, filings. Previously the Service Center Operations Directorate processed these filings. 

Now, the International Adjudications Support Branch (IASB) in the Refugee, Asylum, and International Operations Directorate will process the petitions filed by individuals who were  admitted to the United States as refugees. Petitioners and/or accredited representatives who file refugee-based Form I-730 petitions will receive further instructions when IASB receives their filings. 

Form I-730 petitions filed by persons granted asylum will not be affected by this change. 

The mailing instructions for Form I-730 remain the same. Pe


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Monday, February 5, 2018

USCIS Launches Naturalization and Citizenship Certificate Redesign Pilot

From USCIS Alerts:

On Jan. 22, 2018, four USCIS field offices and one service center will participate in a 10-day pilot to issue redesigned citizenship and naturalization certificates to U.S. citizens. The pilot sites are:

  • Norfolk Field Office
  • Tampa Field Office
  • Minneapolis-St. Paul Field Office
  • Sacramento Field Office
  • Nebraska Service Center

The redesign is part of an ongoing USCIS initiative to deter counterfeiting by adding enhanced graphics and fraud-resistant security features to critical documents.

Although the design is new, the process of applying for and receiving naturalization and citizenship certificates will not change. Previously issued certificates will remain valid as proof of citizenship or naturalization, regardless of when they were issued. It is only necessary to replace a certif


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Friday, February 2, 2018

USCIS Will Email Notifications to H-2A Petitioners, Use Pre-Paid Mailers to Send Requests for Evidence

From USCIS Alerts:

Beginning today, Jan. 22, 2018, USCIS will email notifications of receipt and approval to H-2A (temporary agricultural worker) petitioners who file Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker. Also starting today, USCIS will use pre-paid mailers provided by H-2A petitioners to send requests for evidence (RFE) if issued in a case.

These process changes apply only to H-2A petitions due to their highly time-sensitive nature. 

Email Notifications

USCIS will send notifications of receipt and approval to the email address provided by H-2A petitioners in Part 1 of Form I-129 and to any email address provided for their attorney or accredited representative on a valid Form G-28. There is no cha


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Thursday, February 1, 2018

USCIS Announces Countries Eligible for the H-2A and H-2B Visa Programs

From USCIS Alerts:

USCIS and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), in consultation with the Department of State, have published the list of countries whose nationals are eligible to receive H-2A and H‑2B visas in 2018. The notice listing the eligible countries was published on Jan. 18, 2018, in the Federal Register.

For 2018, Secretary of Homeland Security Nielsen and Secretary of State Tillerson have agreed:

  • To add Mongolia to the list of countries eligible to participate in the H-2A and H-2B visa programs, and
  • To no longer designate Belize, Haiti, and Samoa as eligible countries because they are not meeting the standards for the H

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