Headlines

Summary

  1. USCIS Reminds EB-5 Regional Centers of December 29 Deadline to File I-924As

    USCIS reminded approved EB-5 regional centers with designation letters dated on or before September 30, 2014, that they must file Form I-924A for fiscal year 2014 by December 29, 2014.

  2. DOL Discontinues H-2B Prevailing Wage Determinations Based on Employer-Provided Wage Surveys

    DOL is no longer issuing prevailing wage determinations in the H-2B program based on employer-provided wage surveys, in response to a court order.

  3. Obama Takes Executive Action on Immigration

    Shortly after the mid-term elections, President Barack Obama initiated several executive actions on immigration.

  4. Labor Dept. to Modernize PERM Recruitment and Application Requirements

    DOL will review the PERM program and relevant regulations with a goal of updating them.

  5. Labor Dept. Establishes Interagency Working Group on Worker Protections

    The new interagency working group will identify policies and procedures that promote the consistent enforcement of federal labor, employment, and immigration laws to "protect all workers in the U.S."

  6. U.S., China Extend Short-Term, Business Visa Validity in Reciprocal Arrangement

    On November 12, 2014, the United States began issuing visas in accordance with a new reciprocal arrangement with China.

  7. USCIS Begins Transferring Some Casework from Vermont to California

    Affected casework so far includes Form I-751, Petition to Remove the Conditions of Residence.

  8. USCIS Launches myE-Verify for Employees

    myE-Verify accounts and Self Lock will initially be accessible to individuals in Arizona, Idaho, Colorado, Mississippi, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. In future releases, USCIS will roll out myE-Verify across the country with additional features focused on employees and job seekers.

  9. Government Agency Links

  10. Klasko News

    News and noteworthy, upcoming and recent speaking engagements, publications, and what you may have missed.

1. USCIS Reminds EB-5 Regional Centers of December 29 Deadline to File I-924As

USCIS recently issued a reminder to all approved EB-5 regional centers with designation letters dated on or before September 30, 2014, that they must file Form I-924A, Supplement to Form I-924, for fiscal year 2014 by December 29, 2014.

If a regional center fails to file the I-924A, USCIS will issue a notice of intent to terminate participation in the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. If a regional center files an incomplete Form I-924A, USCIS may issue a notice of intent to terminate participation.

The notice is available at http://www.uscis.gov/news/eb-5-regional-centers-must-file-form-i-924a-december-29#.VIB1evRhobo.email. A related Q&A is available at http://www.uscis.gov/forms/questions-and-answers-form-i-924a.

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2. DOL Discontinues H-2B Prevailing Wage Determinations Based on Employer-Provided Wage Surveys

The Department of Labor’s Office of Foreign Labor Certification recently announced that effective December 8, 2014, the Department is no longer issuing prevailing wage determinations (PWDs) in the H-2B program based on employer-provided wage surveys. The Department took this action in response to a court order entered December 5, 2014, in Comite de Apoyo a los Trabajadores Agricolas et al v. Solis, No. 14-3557 (3d Cir.). The court’s order vacated a portion of the H-2B wage rule (20 CFR § 655.10(f)) and 2009 wage guidance permitting the use of such surveys.

The Department said that PWD requests pending with the National Prevailing Wage Center (NPC) that seek to use employer-provided surveys will be given the appropriate Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) wage for the occupation. Employers who wish to use a Service Contract Act or Davis Bacon Act wage determination, or a wage based on a collective bargaining agreement, may request redetermination under 20 CFR § 655.10(g). Employers whose prevailing wage determination was based on an employer provided-wage survey, but whose H-2B applications for temporary employment certification have not yet resulted in a final determination by the Chicago NPC, will be notified of their new wage obligation along with their certification letters.

The notice is available at http://www.foreignlaborcert.doleta.gov/.

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3. Obama Takes Executive Action on Immigration

Most recently, President Barack Obama announced several initiatives and executive actions on immigration.

As outlined in a series of Department of Homeland Security memoranda, the executive actions include, among other things:

  • Supporting high-skilled business and workers. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been directed to take a number of administrative actions to better enable U.S. businesses to hire and retain highly skilled foreign-born workers and strengthen and expand opportunities for students to gain on-the-job training. For example, DHS notes, “because our immigration system suffers from extremely long waits for green cards, we will amend current regulations and make other administrative changes to provide needed flexibility to workers with approved employment-based green card petitions.”

Some of the actions called for in the memo include:

  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) working with the Department of State (DOS) to improve the system for determining when immigrant visas are available to applicants during the fiscal year. DOS has agreed to modify its visa bulletin system “to more simply and reliably make such determinations,” and the memo states an expectation that USCIS will revise its current regulations “to reflect and complement these proposed modifications.” Because this change involves the publication of new regulations, it will not likely go into effect before the end of 2015.
  • USCIS considering “amending its regulations to ensure that approved, long-standing visa petitions remain valid in certain cases where [beneficiaries] seek to change jobs or employers.” Such an amendment would make clearer how the “permanent portability” provision of AC-21 (validity of a petition for the “same or a similar” job if an I-485 has been pending for more than 180 days) applies in situations where employees change jobs or are promoted by their employers. Because this change likely involves the publication of new regulations, it will not go into effect before the end of 2015.
  • USCIS is directed to finalize its proposed regulation allowing for H-4 employment authorization in certain circumstances (principally when either an I-140 has been approved in a backlogged category or when the employment-based permanent residence process has been pending for at least one year but is not yet complete for the H-1B employee). Because this change involves publishing a final rule based on an already-published proposed regulation, it may go into effect as early as January or February of 2015.
  • U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) developing regulations for notice and comment to expand the degree programs eligible for Optional Practical Training (OPT) and to extend the time period and use of OPT for foreign STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) students and graduates. Because this change involves the publication of new regulations, it will not likely go into effect before the end of 2015.
  • USCIS issuing guidance or regulations to clarify the standard for granting a national interest waiver green card, with the aim of promoting its greater use. Because this change involves drafting administrative guidance rather than regulations, it may be released by the middle of 2015.
  • USCIS proposing a program allowing parole status, on a case-by-case basis, to inventors, researchers, and founders of start-up enterprises who may not yet qualify for national interest waivers but “who have been awarded substantial U.S. investor financing or otherwise hold the promise of innovation and job creation through the development of new technologies or the pursuit of cutting-edge research.” The regulation will include income and resource thresholds. Because this change involves the publication of new regulations, it will not likely go into effect before the end of 2015.
  • USCIS issuing a policy memorandum to provide “clear, consolidated guidance” on the meaning of “specialized knowledge” in adjudicating L-1B petitions. Because this change involves already-drafted guidance that has been awaiting release for some time, it may be released as early as January or February of 2015.
  • USCIS issuing a policy memorandum providing guidance on worker portability, specifically with respect to what constitutes a “same or similar” job, with a goal of removing “unnecessary restrictions” on “natural career progression.” Because this change involves drafting administrative guidance rather than regulations, it may be released by the middle of 2015.

The memo explaining these actions is available athttp://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_business_actions.pdf.

  • Enforcement efforts, including commissioning three Joint Task Forces. Joint Task Force East, Joint Task Force West, and Joint Task Force Investigations. All three will incorporate elements of the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Joint Task Force East will be responsible for the southern maritime border and approaches. Joint Task Force West will be responsible for the southern land border and the West Coast. Joint Task Force Investigations will focus on investigations in support of the geographic Task Forces.

The overarching goals of the Southern Border and Approaches Campaign, of which the Joint Task Forces are a part, will be to enforce immigration laws and interdict individuals seeking to enter the U.S. without authorization; degrade international criminal organizations; and decrease the threat of terrorism. The memo explaining these actions is available athttp://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_southern_border_campaign_plan.pdf.

  • Ending the Secure Communities program and replacing it with the Priority Enforcement Program, and prioritizing criminal offenses for arrest, detention, and removal. The memos explaining these actions are available athttp://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_prosecutorial_discretion.pdf andhttp://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_secure_communities.pdf.
  • Expanding Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) to encompass a broader class of children. DACA eligibility had been limited to those who were under 31 years of age on June 15, 2012, who entered the United States before June 15, 2007, and who were under 16 years old when they entered. DACA eligibility will be expanded to cover all undocumented immigrants who entered the United States before the age of 16, and not just those born after June 15, 1981. The entry date will be adjusted from June 15, 2007 to January 1, 2010. The relief (including work authorization) will now last for three years rather than two. The memo explaining this action is available athttp://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_deferred_action.pdf.
  • Extending eligibility for deferred action to parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents. This new program, called Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA), will include individuals who (i) are not removal priorities under the new policy, (ii) have been in the United States at least five years, (iii) have children who on the date of the announcement (November 20, 2014) were U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents, and (iv) present no other factors that would make a grant of deferred action inappropriate. These individuals will be assessed for eligibility for deferred action on a case-by-case basis. They may then apply for work authorization, provided they pay a fee. Each individual will undergo a background check of relevant national security and criminal databases, including DHS and FBI databases. The memo explaining this action is available at http://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_deferred_action.pdf.
  • Expanding I-601A provisional waivers to spouses and children of lawful permanent residents. The provisional waiver program DHS announced in January 2013 for undocumented spouses and children of U.S. citizens will be expanded to include the spouses and children of lawful permanent residents, as well as the adult children of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents. At the same time, the administration will further clarify the “extreme hardship” standard that must be met to obtain the waiver. The memo explaining this action is available athttp://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_i601a_waiver.pdf.
  • Revising parole rules. DHS will begin rulemaking to identify the conditions under which “talented entrepreneurs” should be paroled into the United States, on the ground that their entry would yield a “significant public economic benefit.” DHS will also support the military and its recruitment efforts by working with the Department of Defense to address the availability of parole-in-place and deferred action to spouses, parents, and children of U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents who seek to enlist in the U.S. Armed Forces. DHS will also issue guidance to clarify that when anyone is given advance parole to leave the United States, including those who obtain deferred action, they will not be considered to have departed. Undocumented aliens generally trigger a 3- or 10-year bar to returning to the United States when they depart. The memos explaining these actions are available athttp://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_business_actions.pdf (entrepreneurs),http://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_parole_in_place.pdf (parole-in-place and deferred action), and http://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_arrabally.pdf (advance parole).

President Obama also issued a memorandum directing the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security, in consultation with other federal agencies, to develop recommendations for improving the U.S. visa system. The recommendations will be developed in consultation with “business people, labor leaders, universities, and other stakeholders.” The recommendations will be geared toward streamlining and improving the legal immigration system—including immigrant and non-immigrant visa processing—”with a focus on reforms that reduce government costs, improve services for applicants, reduce burdens on employers, and combat waste, fraud, and abuse in the system.”

In consultation with stakeholders with relevant expertise in immigration law, they will also develop recommendations “to ensure that administrative policies, practices, and systems use all of the immigrant visa numbers that the Congress provides for and intends to be issued, consistent with demand.” In consultation with technology experts inside and outside the government, they will develop recommendations “for modernizing the information technology infrastructure underlying the visa processing system, with a goal of reducing redundant systems, improving the experience of applicants, and enabling better public and congressional oversight of the system.”

President Obama also announced that he is establishing a White House Task Force on New Americans, an interagency effort “to identify and support state and local efforts at integration that are working and to consider how to expand and replicate successful models.” The Task Force, which will engage with community, business, and faith leaders, as well as state and local elected officials, “will help determine additional steps the federal government can take to ensure its programs and policies are serving diverse communities that include new Americans.” Among other things, the Task Force will submit an “Integration Plan” to President Obama, which will include an assessment of the members’ agencies with respect to integration efforts, and recommendations. The Task Force will also identify and disseminate best practices at the state and local level, collect and disseminate data on immigrant integration, and provide technical assistance.

President Obama has said he would reverse the executive actions if Congress passes a comprehensive immigration legislation that he can sign. Republicans countered that they would fight whatever changes the President orders “tooth and nail,” according to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio). He said all options were on the table. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said that unilateral executive actions on immigration are like “waving a red flag in front of a bull.”

A letter transmitted by 136 law professors to the White House on November 20, 2014, and updated on November 25, supports President Obama’s legal authority to expand the DACA program and to establish the Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) program. It is available at https://pennstatelaw.psu.edu/sites/default/files/documents/pdfs/Immigrants/executive-action-law-prof-letter.pdf.

President Obama also issued an “immigration blueprint,” outlined in “Building a 21st Century Immigration System,” which includes additional proposals. The blueprint is available athttp://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/rss_viewer/immigration_blueprint.pdf. The memoranda summarized above, along with the White House address announcing the actions and related USCIS and ICE info, are available athttp://www.dhs.gov/immigration-action. Additional memoranda are available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/11/21/presidential-memorandum-modernizing-and-streamlining-us-immigrant-visa-s (modernizing and streamlining the U.S. visa system) and http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/11/21/presidential-memorandum-creating-welcoming-communities-and-fully-integra (establishing the White House Task Force on New Americans).

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4. Labor Dept. to Modernize PERM Recruitment and Application Requirements

The Department of Labor (DOL) has released a fact sheet announcing that it will review the PERM labor certification program and relevant regulations with a goal of updating them. DOL noted that it has received ongoing feedback that the existing regulatory requirements governing the PERM recruitment process frequently do not align with worker or industry needs and practices.

DOL recently marked the 10th anniversary of the PERM regulations, which govern the labor certification process for the permanent employment of immigrant foreign workers and establish responsibilities of participating employers. The DOL said it has not comprehensively examined and modified the permanent labor certification requirements and process since their inception. This past fiscal year, employers submitted over 70,000 PERM applications requesting foreign workers. The majority of those job openings were for professional occupations in the information technology and science fields.

As part of the new review, DOL will seek input on the current PERM regulations, including how they can be modernized to be more responsive to changes in the national workforce. Specifically, DOL will seek input on the following:

  • Options for identifying labor force occupational shortages and surpluses and methods for aligning domestic worker recruitment requirements with demonstrated shortages and surpluses;
  • Methods and practices designed to modernize U.S. worker recruitment requirements;
  • Processes to clarify employer obligations to ensure that PERM positions are fully open to U.S. workers;
  • Ranges of case processing time frames and possibilities for premium processing; and
  • Application submission and review processes and the feasibility of efficiently addressing nonmaterial errors.

DOL’s Employment and Training Administration may also examine other aspects of the existing PERM regulations to further align the program design with the objectives of the U.S. immigration system and the needs of workers and employers, and to enhance the integrity of the labor certification process.

The fact sheet is available at http://www.dol.gov/dol/fact-sheet/immigration/perm.htm.

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5. Labor Dept. Establishes Interagency Working Group on Worker Protections

The Department of Labor recently announced the creation of an interagency working group to identify policies and procedures that promote the consistent enforcement of federal labor, employment, and immigration laws to “protect all workers in the U.S.” The announcement notes that federal agencies responsible for worker protections seek to protect all workers from exploitation and workers’ rights violations, regardless of immigration status. “Many workers, however, are deterred or prevented from asserting workplace rights and protections. In some cases, employers may exploit immigration status to deter employees from asserting their rights. In other cases, the protections available to workers are unclear,” the announcement notes.

The working group will comprise federal immigration enforcement agencies and federal agencies responsible for worker protections, including the Departments of Labor, Homeland Security, and Justice; the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; and the National Labor Relations Board.

The working group will seek to:

  • Ensure that agencies’ immigration enforcement and worker protection policies promote workers’ cooperation with labor and employment law enforcement authorities without fear of retaliation;
  • Ensure that federal enforcement authorities are not used by parties seeking to undermine worker protection laws by enmeshing immigration authorities in labor disputes; and,
  • Ensure the consistent enforcement of federal labor, employment, and immigration laws.

To achieve these objectives the working group will:

  • Develop policies and procedures to ensure consistent enforcement of labor, employment, and immigration laws;
  • Develop consistent standards and procedures for immigration agencies to contact labor agencies when they encounter a potential labor dispute within the meaning of the Revised Memorandum of Understanding between the Departments of Homeland Security and Labor Concerning Enforcement Activities at Worksites, executed on December 7, 2011;
  • Provide greater clarity to workers, worker representatives, advocates, and employers regarding processes and procedures on the intersection between immigration law enforcement and labor and employment law enforcement;
  • Strengthen processes for staying the removal of, and providing temporary work authorization for, undocumented workers asserting workplace claims and for cases in which a workplace investigation or proceeding is ongoing; and
  • Provide stakeholders open and transparent modes of communication with enforcement authorities.

The working group “will provide opportunities for communication with external stakeholders, including workers, worker representatives, advocates, and employers as appropriate.”

The fact sheet is available at http://www.dol.gov/dol/fact-sheet/immigration/interagency-working-group.htm.

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6. U.S., China Extend Short-Term, Business Visa Validity in Reciprocal Arrangement

On November 12, 2014, the United States began issuing visas in accordance with a new reciprocal arrangement with China, the Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs announced. Chinese applicants who qualify for a B nonimmigrant visa (NIV) may now be issued multiple-entry visas for up to 10 years for business and tourist travel. Qualified Chinese students and exchange visitors and their dependents who qualify for F, M, or J visas are now eligible for multiple-entry visas valid for up to five years or the length of their program. U.S. citizens eligible for Chinese short-term business and tourist visas should also receive multiple-entry visas valid for up to 10 years, while qualified U.S. students may receive student residence permits valid up to five years, depending on the length of their educational programs.

The Bureau noted that visa validity is not the same as the allowed duration of stay. A visa allows a foreign citizen to travel to a U.S. port of entry where a Customs and Border Protection officer will grant admission to valid travelers. In doing so, the officer will inform the traveler of the permitted length of stay. The current change in visa validity does not change the permitted duration of stay for any visa class.

The Bureau said it expects that these changes in visa validity “will be very popular among Chinese travelers. The U.S. Mission in China is taking steps to handle a potential increase in visa workload and intends to keep visa processing times as short as they have been over the past several years.”

There will be no change in visa application fees. The basic visa fee of $160 includes appointment scheduling and passport delivery services.

The United States and China continue to discuss visa validity for other classes of visas. All such decisions are made on a reciprocal basis. The Bureau noted that in FY 2014, business, tourist, student, and exchange visitor visas represented 97 percent of all nonimmigrant visa applications processed in China for Chinese citizens.

A related White House fact sheet notes that China is the fastest-growing outbound tourism market in the world. In 2013, 1.8 million Chinese travelers visited the United States, contributing $21.1 billion to the U.S. economy and supporting more than 109,000 American jobs. Chinese travelers consistently rank the United States as their most-desired travel destination, the fact sheet notes, yet less than 2 percent of total Chinese travelers come to the United States. Chinese travelers cite ease of visa policies as the second most important factor in deciding where to travel, behind only cost. “A competitive visa policy will help us meet projections that suggest as many as 7.3 million Chinese travelers will come to the United States by 2021, contributing nearly $85 billion a year to the economy and supporting up to 440,000 U.S. jobs,” the fact sheet states.

The White House fact sheet also notes that 28 percent of all foreign students and exchange visitors in the United States originate from China. Chinese students in the United States spent $8 billion in 2013, an increase of nearly 24 percent over the previous year.

The announcement is available at http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/news/ChinaVisas.html. A related FAQ is available athttp://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/general/us-china-agree-to-extend-visas.html. The White House fact sheet is available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/11/10/fact-sheet-supporting-american-job-growth-and-strengthening-ties-extendi. The revised reciprocity schedule is available athttp://travel.state.gov/content/dam/visas/policy_updates/Revised_Reciprocity_Schedule_for_China_November_2014.pdf.

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7. USCIS Begins Transferring Some Casework from Vermont to California

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently began transferring some casework from the Vermont Service Center to the California Service Center to balance workloads. Affected casework so far includes Form I-751, Petition to Remove the Conditions of Residence, for certain marriage-related green card cases.

USCIS will send transfer notices to those affected. The original receipt number will not change and the transfer will not delay processing, USCIS said. The words “Case Type: CRI89 Approved Removal of Conditions” will be printed on the transfer notices. USCIS said that the notice may not contain the receipt number of the pending I-751. Those receiving any notice should respond to the service center that sent them the notice.

Those who do not receive a decision within the published processing time for the California Service Center may submit an inquiry using e-Request or call the National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283. For TDD (hearing-impaired) assistance, please call 1-800-767-1833.

The announcement is available at http://www.uscis.gov/news/form-i-751-workload-transfer-vermont-service-center-california-service-center. Published processing times are available at https://egov.uscis.gov/cris/processTimesDisplayInit.do.

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8. USCIS Launches myE-Verify for Employees

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director León Rodríguez recently announced the launch of myE-Verify, a new website designed for employees. myE-Verify is a “one-stop shop” for employees to create and maintain secure personal accounts and access new features for identity protection, USCIS said.

myE-Verify includes Self Check and the Employee Rights Toolkit, among other things. Users will have their identities verified through Self Check when creating myE-Verify accounts. myE-Verify introduces the following new services:

  • myE-Verify accounts – Allows employees and job seekers to set up free and secure personal accounts to manage the use of their information in E-Verify and Self Check through the available myE-Verify features.
  • Self Lock – Allows individuals to lock their social security numbers to prevent unauthorized or fraudulent use within E-Verify. Self Lock is available only to myE-Verify account holders.
  • myResources – A section of the myE-Verify site that contains information in multi-media formats to educate employees about their rights as well as the responsibilities of employers in the employment eligibility verification process.

myE-Verify accounts and Self Lock will initially be accessible to individuals in Arizona, Idaho, Colorado, Mississippi, Virginia, and the District of Columbia. In future releases, USCIS will roll out myE-Verify across the country with additional features focused on employees and job seekers.

E-Verify is used by nearly 550,000 employers to verify the employment eligibility of persons they hire.

The announcement is available at http://www.uscis.gov/news/new-e-verify-service-combats-fraud-protects-identity-educates-workers. Information on E-Verify is available at http://www.uscis.gov/e-verify. The myE-Verify page is at http://www.uscis.gov/mye-verify.

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Follow these links to access current processing times of the USCIS Service Centers and the Department of Labor, or the Department of State’s latest Visa Bulletin with the most recent cut-off dates for visa numbers:

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10. Klasko News

10.  Klasko News

Rankings and Listings

Klasko Immigration Law Partners is pleased to announce that the firm has again been recognized as one of the top Immigration Law firms in the United States by U.S. News and World Report andBest Lawyers. The firm received a Tier 1 ranking nationally as well regionally in Philadelphia and New York City. According to U.S. News, “firms included in the 2015 “Best Law Firm” list are recognized for professional excellence with persistently impressive ratings from clients and peers. Achieving a tiered ranking signals a unique combination of quality law practice and breadth of legal expertise. The 2015 rankings are based on the highest number of participating firms and highest number of client ballots on record. The U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in their field, and review of additional information provided by law firms as part of the formal submission process. Ranked firms, presented in tiers, are listed on a national and/or metropolitan scale.”

H. Ronald Klasko (Ron), William A. Stock (Bill) and Elise A. Fialkowski have again been named among the world’s leading Corporate Immigration Lawyers by clients and peers inWho’s Who Legal: Corporate Immigration 2015 & Who’s Who Legal 2016 – Compendium Edition. We congratulate Ron, Bill and Elise on once again being selected and honored as the world’s leading Corporate Immigration Lawyers.

News and Noteworthy

Bill discussed ‘notarios’ defrauding immigrants in an interview with CBS Philly on December 15. Philadelphia City Council recently passed a bill that tries to regulate private agencies that claim to help immigrants. To read the story, click here. Bill was also quoted in a related article for the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Bill was a guest on KURV in Brownsville, TX on November 14 to discuss the President’s authority to defer action under the immigration laws.

Save the Date

Klasko Immigration Law Partners is proud to present our 1st Annual EB-5 Seminar “Marketing and Compliance: A Guide for Regional Centers and Developers” on February 10, 2015 in Philadelphia. Attendees will:

  • Learn how to structure EB-5 projects to be marketable in China and India
  • Hear directly from migration agents about marketing your project
  • Learn about current market trends
  • Learn how to keep your regional center in compliance with USCIS requirements
  • Learn how to prepare for I-829 filings
  • Listen to a panel of special guest speakers

Registration details forthcoming.

Recent Speaking Engagements

Bill spoke at the Practising Law Institute’s 47th Annual Immigration & Naturalization Institute in New York on December 19, 2014. For more information or to review the course handbook, click here.

On November 19, Ron presented “Visa and Permanent Residence Options” a webinar for the MBA for Executives (EMBA) program of the Wharton Business School. To review the PowerPoint presentation, click here.

Lisa T. Felix was at Temple University on November 18 where she discussed “International Students: Transition from Campus to the Workplace.” Lisa spoke with students about non-immigrant visas, maintaining lawful status, post F/J non-immigrant visa options, H-1B issues for start-ups, H-1B quota, travel and status issues, considerations in employment based applications, among other topics. For more information, click here.

Elise was a panelist on “Ethical Issues in Other NIV Cases” at the 14th Annual Advanced Corporate Immigration Conference, a program presented in cooperation with NJSBA Immigration Law Section & AILA-NJ on November 12, 2014 in Newark, NJ.

On November 11, Feige M. Grundman spoke to students at Carnegie Mellon University about H-1Bs, other nonimmigrant visa options and provided an overview of the green card process. To review the PowerPoint presentation, click here.

Daniel B. Lundy (Dan) has been speaking across the country on EB-5 related topics. Dan was in San Francisco and Oakland, CA recently to discuss financing EB-5 projects and issues facing lenders and banks. In November, Dan presented “Sourcing EB-5 Investors” and “Case Studies and Best Practices of EB-5 Projects” in Atlantic City for MK Capital Resources. Dan also served as a panelist on “Form I-924A – Strategies for Fulfilling the Annual EB-5 Regional Center Reporting Requirement,” a webinar hosted by IIUSA (Association to Invest in USA). For more information on these talks, contact Dan at dlundy@klaskolaw.com.

Elise co-presented “Can They Do That? What Is and Is Not Permissible Activity for Those Admitted in B Visa or Visa Waiver Status” at the 2014 NAFSA Region VIII Conference in Williamsburg, VA from November 4-7, 2014. For more information, contact Elise at efialkowski@klaskolaw.com.

Bill and Michelle T. Kobler was at Stevens Institute of Technology on November 5 and spoke to students about non-immigrant status, H-1B requirements and permanent residency.

Recent Publications

Michele Gallo’s recently authored article “Visa Agreement a Small, but Important Step to Promote US-China Trade” was published in the November 19, 2014 edition of The Legal Intelligencer. In this article, Michele details the agreement between the United States and China to lengthen the visa validity periods for certain visa classifications. Michele explains that China too will extend the visa validity periods for U.S. citizens traveling to China in the same categories and that under the agreement, tourist and business visas will be valid for ten (10) years and student and exchange visitor visas will be valid for five (5) years, with each of these enjoying the option of making multiple entries during the validity of the visa. For more information on the agreement or to request a copy of this article, email Michele atmgallo@klaskolaw.com.

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