Headlines

Summary

  1. USCIS Issues Update on H-1B Cap Electronic Registration System

    USCIS has issued an update regarding the agency’s intention to implement a new system for the upcoming H-1B cap filing season, which would require petitioning employers to complete an electronic pre-registration prior to filing.

  2. Despite Courts Enjoining DHS Public Charge Rule, Department of State Proceeding with Implementing its Own Version.

    Four courts issued injunctions against the controversial rule, two of which were nationwide, and one of which barred USCIS from issuing new forms related to the rule.

  3. DHS Secretary Resigns

    After only serving six months as Acting DHS Secretary, Kevin McAleenan resigned from the position, which has been held by four different individuals during the Trump administration.

  4. DOS Releases Instructions for the 2021 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program

    The Department of State (DOS) has released instructions outlining how to apply for the 2021 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program, which provides 55,000 diversity visas to individuals from countries that historically have low rates of immigration to the United States.

  5. Immigrants Lead the Way for America in the Awarding of Nobel Prizes

    Four immigrants to the United States have been named Nobel laureates for 2019.

  6. KLASKO NEWS

1. USCIS Issues Update on H-1B Cap Electronic Registration System

USCIS has issued an update regarding the agency’s intention to implement a new system for the upcoming H-1B cap filing season, which would require petitioning employers to complete an electronic pre-registration prior to filing.

USCIS envisions a new system whereby upon completion of the pre-registration, USCIS would select the cases eligible to be filed and provide petitioning employers with a defined time period to file the H-1B petition. 

USCIS has advised that they have completed two rounds of design, testing, and feedback. After the current development phase is completed, USCIS has indicated that further outreach and training will be provided prior to the rollout of the new system.  

As this process will represent a significant change in procedure (and as the H-1B cap season is rapidly approaching), there has been widespread concern about the limited outreach and engagement opportunities available to test and provide feedback on the registration tool, especially with regard to technical glitches and operational disruptions that have plagued previous registration systems in other visa categories.  

Your Klasko attorneys will be keeping a close eye on updates regarding the FY2021 H-1B filing system and will issue client alerts as updates become available.

KILP has already issued one client alert on this topic here. If you have any questions, please contact your Klasko Law attorney.

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2. Despite Courts Enjoining DHS Public Charge Rule, Department of State Proceeding with Implementing its Own Version.

Last week, four courts issued injunctions barring the Trump Administration from implementing the controversial public charge rule that would dramatically change the way immigration law operates in the United States. Two of the courts issued nationwide injunctions. One barred USCIS from using forms released at the last minute and another issued an injunction limited to just the West Coast states. USCIS quickly took down the new forms from its website.

On October 11, the Department of State (DOS) made the surprising move of releasing an interim public charge final rule set to take effect just a week after publication. The short notice caught immigration lawyers off-guard, and many are concerned that there will not be enough time to convince a court to stop the rule from going into force. DOS indicated the day of the USCIS rule being blocked that it would ignore what the courts have said about the DHS rule and would implement their rule at midnight on October 15, 2019 even though DOS had not issued any guidance on how they plan to implement the new rule. However, on October 15th, a State Department official told CBS News that it has now decided to delay implementation of the rule until a new form is issued. In the meantime, the State Department rule is expected to face a legal challenge.

Details here.

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3. DHS Secretary Resigns

After just six months serving as Acting DHS Secretary, Kevin McAleenan handed in his resignation last week. McAleenan was the fourth DHS Secretary of the Trump Administration. He focused his time at the agency cracking down on asylum applicants and reducing overall entries to the US. While McAleenan considered himself successful at the agency, he was said to have had an embattled relationship with a White House taking increasingly extreme positions on immigration. McAleenan offered to stay on the job until the end of October, and DHS was still promoting McAleenan’s activities several days after his resignation announcement.

 No name has yet been provided by the Administration as for a replacement for McAleenan, though some are speculating it will be USCIS Ken Cuccinelli. If selected, Cuccinelli would likely face a very tough confirmation battle in the Senate. To circumvent this, the Trump Administration has lately been appointing key appointees as “Acting” Directors and Secretaries. However, the Federal Vacancies Act dictates who can be appointed to acting and interim positions, and Cuccinelli’s USCIS appointment appears to violate this law—potentially providing a legal argument to someone seeking to challenge actions taken by USCIS. Based on this interpretation, Cuccinelli would similarly be ineligible for an interim DHS Secretary appointment and, according to the law, would need to be confirmed by the Senate.

Details are here.

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4. DOS Releases Instructions for the 2021 Diversity Immigrant Visa Program

The Department of State (DOS) annually allocates visas for a class of immigrants known as “diversity immigrants” from countries with historically low rates of immigration to the United States. For Fiscal Year 2021, there will be 55,000 Diversity Visas (DVs) available without a fee.

Only individuals from certain countries may qualify. The full list of eligible countries can be found beginning on page 16 of the DOS announcement.

If not born in an eligible country, there are two other possible ways to qualify.

  1. If your spouse was born in an eligible country.
  2. If you were born in an ineligible country in which neither of your parents was born or legally resident at the time of your birth, you may claim the country of birth of one of your parents if it is a country whose natives are eligible for the DV program.

Diversity Visa applicants must also adhere to the education work requirement of the program by having either:

  1. A minimum of a high-school or its equivalent, defined as successful completion of a 12-year course of formal elementary and secondary education;
    OR
  2. A minimum of two years of work experience within the past five years in an occupation which requires at least two years of training or experience to perform.

The Department of State announcement is available here.

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5. Immigrants Lead the Way for America in the Awarding of Nobel Prizes

Four immigrants to the United States have been named Nobel laureates for 2019. They include French-born Esther Duflo and Indian-born Abhijit Banerjee in the field of economics. British immigrant M. Stanley Whittingham won for chemistry and Canadian-born James Peebles won for physics.

According to Stuart Andersen at the National Foundation for American Policy, nearly 40% of Nobel Prizes awarded to Americans in Chemistry, Physics and Medicine since 2000 have been awarded to immigrants.

Details are here.

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6. KLASKO NEWS

FIRM NEWS

Klasko Immigration Law Partners has been busy preparing for the fall season. Upcoming annual events include: a Halloween costume contest, Firmsgiving on November 8 (new blog on a sample of dishes being served here!), and the famous Holiday Party in December! Follow the firm on social media and look for next month’s newsletter for photos from the events.


IN THE NEWS

William A. Stock Spoke with Forbes.com about Trump’s Bar on New Immigrants without Health Insurance
Bill spoke with Forbes.com about the details and the effects pertaining to Trump’s new bar.

Michele G. Madera Wrote Article for Law360 Regarding Growing Need for Employee Data Protection
Michele and her co-author Jordan Fischer addressed the evolving cybersecurity legislation regarding the protection of immigrant private information.  

H. Ronald Klasko appears in Bloomberg.com Article about U.S. Losing its Luster for Hong Kong Emigrants
In this article, Ron is quoted about how EB-5 backlogs have affected Hong Kong interest in migrating to the U.S.


RECENT SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS

William A. Stock
Bill presented on a panel titled “Letter from America: How Has the Trump Administration Changed the United States Immigration System?” at 9th Biennial IBA Global Immigration Conference on October 30th.

William A. Stock
Bill was a featured speaker on the Hot Topics panel at the AILA Rome District Chapter Fall Conference on October 27th in Dublin, England.

Karuna C. Simbeck
Karuna spoke to students on October 23rd at Klein Hall on Temple’s Main campus about immigration law at the Temple Law International Society Event.

Anu Nair
Anu was a featured panelist during the Immigration Law workshop at Villanova University on October 10th.


UPCOMING SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS

William A. Stock
On November 12th, Ron will be a featured speaker at the NJICLE Advanced Corporate Immigration Conference, celebrating its 20th year anniversary, on a panel entitled Litigating Employment Based Cases.

Andrew J. Zeltner
Drew will be speaking to students on November 14th at Princeton University about Visa Options for Postdoc students.


RANKINGS

Anu Nair
Anu will be recognized by her alma mater, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, for overcoming challenges in the face of adversity at the tenth annual BALLSA alumni dinner.


ICYMI: RECENT BLOG POSTS AND ALERTS

CLIENT ALERT: USCIS Issues Update on H-1B Cap Electronic Registration System—Are Major Changes on the Way?
Drew Zeltner covers the latest update from USCIS on its intention to implement a new system for the upcoming H-1B cap filing season; including an electronic pre-registration filing for petitioning employers.

Cross-Border Employers Face Critical GDPR Risks
In this article, Michele Madera details how employers now need to consider how employees’ data will move across international borders and ensure its security through each phase of the process.

Elections Are Coming: Filing for U.S. Citizenship
In this post, Anu Nair discusses the application of naturalization when a permanent resident applies for citizenship.


FIRM FEATURE

The October Ronny award—a monthly recognition for a chosen staff member nominated by their peers—went to Accounting Department Member Bill McKenna for his consistent positive attitude and how he contributes to the great working environment at KILP every day. Bill gets to have the Ronny Award at his workstation for the month and a backpack to keep!

Stay Connected! Subscribe to our blog and follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.
This newsletter was prepared with the assistance of ABIL, the Alliance of Business Immigration Lawyers, of which Klasko Immigration Law Partners is an active member.

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