E-filing discontinued at USCIS.
USCIS reports that in order to maintain data security standards it is discontinuing the e-filing system.
E-filing was allowed for several forms:
Employment based immigrant visa petition Form: I-140;
Employment authorization application: Form I-765;
Application for travel authorization: Form I-131;
Premium processing request: Form I-907; and,
Application for Temporary Protected Status: I-821.
Starting September 20, 2015 only paper versions of these forms will be accepted.
Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designation for Yemen
Yemen is designated for TPS status for 18 months starting September 3rd, 2015 for 18 months i.e. till March 2nd, 2015. This is done because living conditions in Yemen have become so dangerous that the situation calls for humanitarian considerations.
What this means is that Yemen nationals, temporarily present in U.S. may apply for this status during the registration period and will not be deported. Those who are eligible for TPS can also seek employment authorization.
DACA expansion and DAPA application filings still await court decision.
USCIS halts accepting aplications under the President's Executive Action complying with the order of Texas Federal Court
Immigration relief measures announced for Nepal and Yemen.
International response to come to aide natural disaster or war struck countries is well-known and so immigration relief measures are announced to help those affected by war conditions in Yemen and earthquake in Nepal.
Yemenese and Nepalese can temporarily come to the United States and stay for sometime. International students from Nepal and Yemen may be able to receive work authorization based on sympathetic consideration.
H1B Quota Exhausted!
Like all other years this year also H1B annual quota is exhausted within a week the filing started for the year. This includes the masters quota for 20,000 positions for U.S. masters degree holders as well as the regular quota of 65000 for the cap subject H1Bs for the work year starting October 2015.
USCIS should conduct a computer generated lottery to fill the required position since it has received more number of applications than it could allocate available visas.
The masters cap applications would first be selected through the random lottery to fill the 20,000 positions. The remaining Masters cap applications not so selected by the first lottery and all other regular cap subject applications will then be pooled together to conduct a second lottery to fill the available quota for 65000 positions.
Cap exempt H1b applications that includes extensions and exempt H1B applications may still be filed.
H-2B petition adjudication will resume, but premium processing remains suspended until further notice. On March 5th, 2015 Department of Labor had stopped processing temporary labor certification for H2B temporary worker program under the order of a Florida federal court. H2B processing had earlier stopped because of this decision.
FEDERAL COURT STAYS DACA & DAPA
DACA extensions and DAPA application under the President's newly announced executive action expansion program are not being accepted at the USCIS at this time.
Indiana and 25 other coalition states have sought Texas Federal court to intervene and the Federal District Court has ordered temporary injunction order against implementation of the DACA extension and DAPA program.
DACA initial applications and its extension can however be filed at this time without interruption.
Stay of DACA expansion and DAPA program was expected. Any future actions will depend upon how the case is decided in Texas.
H-2B CAP IS REACHED FOR THE FIRST HALF OF THE FY!
Sufficient number of H2B petitions have been filed with USCIS to reach the congressionally mandated limit, or “cap” on the total number of foreign nationals who may seek a visa or otherwise obtain H-2B status for the first half of fiscal year (FY) 2015.
Final receipt date was Jan. 26, 2015 for new H-2B worker petitions with employment start date before April 1, 2015.
What this means for filing the new petitions
H-2B petitions that are exempt from the congressionally mandated cap can still be filed.
PRESIDENT's EXECUTIVE ORDER
On November 20, 2014 President Obama announced executive action which extends immigration relief to parents who entered United States without any authorization if they have U.S. citizen and permanent resident children: only if:
they register, pay taxes and do not have any criminal background.
The relief comes in the form of postponement of deportation and ability to obtain employment authorization.
This announcement is an extension of DACA but does not grant any status and still leaves out many.
Committed to protect your immigration interest!
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