Category Archives: Immigration

Immigration Through Investment: A Comparison of the U.S. EB-5 Program vs. the Quebec Immigrant Investor Program

There are currently many different investment immigration programs offered by countries around the world, all of which offer their own unique benefits. Two popular programs are the EB-5 Program in the United States and the Quebec Investment Immigration Program (QIIP) offered in Canada. The following comparison provides an in-depth look at the parameters of the …

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September 2016 Visa Bulletin Released

This week, the Department of State released the September 2016 Visa Bulletin. Given that visa numbers are issued based on the government fiscal year, we expect to see significant movement again in October 2016; for September 2016, the last month of FY2016, there were only minor changes with regard to movement of final action dates in …

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Is H-1B Reform On Its Way?

Two bipartisan bills to reform professional-level visa classifications were introduced into Congress this past July. Given the charged nature of the national discourse on immigration issues this election year, it seems unlikely either bill will be enacted before the presidential election. The bipartisan nature of both bills, however, suggests Congress may be able to coalesce, …

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Civil Penalties Nearly Double for Form I-9 Violations

Significantly Increase for Other Immigration-Related Violations Due to the implementation of the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Act Improvements Act of 2015 (Sec. 701 of Public Law 114-74) (“Inflation Adjustment Act”), higher fines and civil penalties have now gone into effect for assessments that occur on or after August 1, 2016. These higher penalties can …

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Quota Reserved for Most Desired Immigrant Applicants Retrogresses for Natives of India and China!

The Department of State published its August 2016 Visa Bulletin and it has a few impactful surprises. This is not good news for companies and foreign nationals.  Indian and Chinese foreign nationals, as usual, are the hardest hit.  Specifically, the historically open First Preference Employment Based Category (EB-1) retrogressed to January 1, 2010 for Indian …

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Increased DOJ fines for Immigration-related Offenses go into effect August 1

New fines will apply to violations that occurred on or after Nov. 2, 2015 – Another good reason to conduct regular I-9 self-audits The U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) new penalties for immigration-related workplace violations including unlawful employment of aliens, I-9 paperwork violations and unlawful employment practices tied to immigration (discrimination) will take effect Aug. …

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As Europe divides, Africa Unites with Common African Union E-passport

In 2015, African Union (AU) Commissioner for Political Affairs, Dr. Aisha Abdullahi, indicated that a plan was underway to implement a single African passport. After recent announcements that the AU passport would be unveiled at the AU Summit in Kigali this month, the long-awaited continental e-passport has finally been revealed. The first recipients of the pan-African …

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New USCIS Policy Decision Broadens Permissible Bases for Visa Transfer of Multinational Managers

After four years of internal deliberations, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) recently issued a policy memorandum binding all USCIS personnel to follow the reasoning of a 2013 USCIS Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) decision. That AAO decision broadened the type of evidence a U.S. employer may cite in support of an L-1A intracompany transfer visa, which …

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Supreme Court Tie Blocks Expansion of DACA and Creation of DAPA

Disappointing many, the U.S. Supreme Court has tied 4-4 in a case appealing a nationwide injunction on the Obama Administration’s executive action expanding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and creating the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) programs. United States v. Texas, No. 15-674 (June 23, 2016). The …

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July 2016 Visa Bulletin Released

Projections include EB-1 Cutoff Date for China and India, Slow EB-2 and EB-3 Movement, EB-4 Backlogs for Latin America to ease, and EB-5 China to advance slightly.   This week, the Department of State (DOS) has released the July 2016 Visa Bulletin. We are three months from the end of the fiscal year and the dwindling …

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