Call Today408-389-4764

San Jose Immigration Law Blog

The first step in family immigration: Getting an immigrant visa

If you are a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident (green card holder), you may want to sponsor a relative to live in the United States. Both citizens and permanent residents can do so, although the rules are somewhat different. The first step, however, is sponsoring your relative for an immigrant visa. An immigrant visa is the type that can ultimately result in lawful permanent residence.

The U.S. currently allows an unlimited number of immigrant visas for the close relatives of any U.S. citizen. Close relatives include:

  • Spouse (including same-sex spouses)
  • Unmarried children under age 21
  • Orphans adopted abroad or within the U.S.
  • Parent of a citizen who is at least 21

High demand for limited number of H-1B visas expected

For the past several years, many industries in California, including financial services and information technology, have relied on the H-1B visa program to hire skilled workers.  It is expected that the current economy along with fears of future restrictions to the H-1B visa program will continue to create a high volume of visa petitions in 2018.

The federal government has an annual cap of 85,000 visas (20,000 visas for employees/beneficiaries with a masters degree or higher from a U.S. university and 65,000 visas for the general pool of othewise qualified employees/beneficiaries) that it issues through the program. Within days after the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services opens the petition period (first week of April), petitions exceed the visa limit. The agency then runs with a computer program to select visa petitions to review for the year.

Therefore, it is important for any employer who is looking to hire qualified, high skilled workers, through the H-1B program, to be well prepared for petition filing by the first week of April 2018 in order to employ the worker by the start of the fiscal year (October 1, 2018).  Alison Yew has many years of experience with H-1B filings and can provide relevant guidance on how to be prepared so that filing by the first week of April can go as smoothly as possible. Contact us now to discuss further. 

TPS status ended for nearly 200,000 Salvadorans

With nothing to go back home to, many Salvadorans that have been living in the United States as Temporary Protected Status holders now face an uncertain future. For months, administration officials have discussed ending special qualifications that have allowed immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally from El Salvador and nine other countries to stay and work in the U.S.

Salvadorans call The Golden State home

End of DACA postponed to make room for lawsuits

One of 2017's top immigration changes took place when President Trump announced the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA. This program protects children who were unlawfully brought to the U.S. from deportation and legal issues. Without it, thousands of residents would be susceptible to deportation.

As soon as officials declared the end of DACA, lawsuits rapidly sprung up across the country. So many lawsuits, in fact, that a judge has now postponed the decision from going into effect until they have enough time to resolve. DACA recipients have anywhere between six months to two and a half years (depending on their authorization expiration date) until their protection officially ends.

Final Rule on High-Skilled Non-Immigrant Workers

U.S. Department of Homeland Security Issues Final Rule on Immigrant Visa Petition Retention and Program Improvements Affecting High-Skilled Nonimmigrant Workers

On November 18, 2016, DHS published a long anticipated final rule, "Retention of EB-1, EB-2, and EB-3 Immigrant Workers and Program Improvements Affecting High-Skilled Nonimmigrant Workers." The rule goes into effect on January 17, 2017, and codifies existing policies and practices. It is intended to benefit U.S. employers and foreign workers by streamlining processes relating to the employment-based immigrant visa process and increasing job portability and flexibility for foreign workers.

Immigrants Make Valuable Contributions to U.S. Economy

New Report: The Economic and Fiscal Consequences of Immigration

President-Elect Trump's controversial immigration proposals have without a doubt caused many to question the future of immigration policy and the effect it will have on our nation's immigrant community. Among those who work closely with immigrants, such as in our immigration law practice, we know that immigration has great power and helps to propel our economy. That's why we believe it was very timely that the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (NAS) published its recent 2016 report, and we share here some of its findings on our blog, as it confirms the positive effects of immigration.

Foreign Students in U.S. Schools

According to Time Magazine, the number of international students in U.S. colleges and universities topped 1 million for the first time, in the 2015-2016 academic year. The data came from the Institute of International Education. Here is a breakdown of the nationalities in U.S. schools: 1. China (328,547); 3. Saudi Arabia (61, 287); 5. Canada (26, 973); 8. Brazil (19,370); 11. Iran (12, 269); 15. Germany (10,145) 

NEW USCIS FEES EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 23, 2016

The Department of Homeland Security has published a new rule, effective December 23, 2016, raising filing fees for applications/petitions filed with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service ("USCIS"). The last time USCIS updated the fee schedule was on November 23, 2010. The current USCIS fee schedule and the new fees, are displayed in the below-table. 

Final Rule on High-Skilled Non-Immigrant Workers

U.S. Department of Homeland Security Issues Final Rule on Immigrant Visa Petition Retention and Program Improvements Affecting High-Skilled Nonimmigrant Workers

On November 18, 2016, DHS published a long anticipated final rule, "Retention of EB-1, EB-2, and EB-3 Immigrant Workers and Program Improvements Affecting High-Skilled Nonimmigrant Workers." The rule goes into effect on January 17, 2017, and codifies existing policies and practices. It is intended to benefit U.S. employers and foreign workers by streamlining processes relating to the employment-based immigrant visa process and increasing job portability and flexibility for foreign workers.

Yew Immigration Law Group, a P.C. | 1155 North First Street Suite 210 |San Jose, CA 95112 | Phone: 408-389-4764 | Map & Directions