The U.S. immigration landscape continues to shift. Here are several updates from the last few weeks.
On October 23, 2017, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a policy memorandum that eliminates a previous policy that gave deference to prior determinations of eligibility in the adjudication of non-immigrant extension petitions. Effective immediately, every non-immigrant petition will be reviewed as if it is a new request for non-immigrant status and employers cannot assume that extensions will be granted even in cases where the underlying facts have not changed.
For more information, see USCIS policy memorandum.
USCIS will begin expanding in-person interviews for certain lawful permanent resident applicants in order to further improve the detection and prevention of fraud and further enhance the integrity of the immigration system as directed in the Executive Order 13780, “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States.” Under the new policy, all individuals who filed an employment-based adjustment of status (I-485) application on or after March 6, 2017, will be required to attend an interview at their local USCIS office.
For more information, see USCIS announcement.
If a new employee’s verification documents have been lost, stolen or damaged, he or she may present a receipt showing an application has been made for a replacement document. The receipt fulfills the verification requirements of the document and is valid for 90 days from the date of hire.
For more information, see USCIS press release.
As of September 18, 2017, all employers must use the updated Form I-9 with the revision date 07/17/17N. USCIS has released three videos to help employees complete Section 1 and employers complete Section 2 and 3.
For more information, see USCIS I-9 videos.
If you sponsor foreign workers for non-immigrant visas (H-1B, L-1A/B, E-3, etc.) and Lawful Permanent Resident status (i.e., green card) or have foreign employees traveling to the U.S. via the Visa Waiver Program or on B-1 visa, you should consider creating a Corporate Immigration Policy.
For more information, see our recent corporate immigration policy alert.
As of November 2, 2018, the designation of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Sudan nationals will terminate. Current Sudan beneficiaries who wish to maintain their TPS until November 2, 2018, must re-register between October 11, 2017, and December 11, 2017.
For more information, see the Department of Homeland Security notice.
On October 8, 2017, a Twitter post announced that due to recent events in Turkey, the U.S. suspended the issuance of all non-immigrant visa services at all U.S. diplomatic facilities in Turkey.
For more information, see the U.S. Embassy tweet.
Presidential determination on refugee admissions for fiscal year 2018 states that the admission of up to 45,000 refugees will be allowed.
For more information, see Presidential Memorandum for the Secretary of State.
Coinciding with this determination, the President announced increased screening and vetting procedures for refugee applicants.
For more information, see the Department of Homeland Security release.
Starting October 26, 2017, passengers on international flights to the U.S., including U.S. Citizen travellers, will encounter stricter security, including heightened security checks and new screening interviews or questionnaires.
For more information, see this NPR news release.
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