VisaPro.com – Department of Labor [News Feed]

  • New USCIS Policy: RFE Everything From Initial Petition To Extensions
    In a significant development, USCIS has issued a new Policy Memorandum superseding and rescinding previous guidance regarding deference to prior determinations of eligibility in adjudication of Form I-129 petitions seeking extension of nonimmigrant status. The previous USCIS policy, in existence since 2004, instructed that previously approved petitions should be given deference. This meant that unless there was any material error or fraud in the previous determination, USCIS officers should approve petitions for extensions of stay that had the same petitioner, beneficiary and basic underlying facts. The updated guidance, which applies to nearly all nonimmigrant classifications filed using Form I-129, including H-1B, and L-1 visas, instructs USCIS officers to now apply the same level of scrutiny to both initial petitions and extension requests. This means that extension petitions will be treated the same as new petitions and it will not matter that USCIS previously approved a petition with the same facts. USCIS aims to remove any “constraints” that USCIS officers may have from prior determinations and approvals. While the true impact of the new policy will become more evident in the coming days, it is reasonable to expect an increase in the number of RFEs being issued in Form I-129 extension petitions, especially for H-1Bs and L-1s. Petitioners filing Form I-129 extension petitions must make sure to include all the necessary supporting documents with the extension petition to minimize the impact of this new guidance and not take for granted that USCIS has previously approved an I-129 with the same facts and information. If you have any questions regarding extension of status, or need any assistance in filing a Form I-129 extension petition, please Contact VisaPro immediately. Our experienced attorneys will be happy to assist you. The post New USCIS Policy: RFE Everything From Initial Petition To Extensions appeared first on VisaPro. …
  • USCIS Resumes H1B Premium Processing For All H1B Petitions

    USCIS has resumed Premium Processing for all types of H1B petitions.

    USCIS had temporarily suspend Premium Processing for all H1B petitions starting April 3, 2017. Subsequently, it resumed Premium Processing for certain types of H1B petitions including H1B cap-exempt petitions, H1B petitions filed on behalf of physicians under the Conrad 30 waiver program, and H1B petitions subject to the H1B cap 2018. It has now resumed Premium Processing for all types of H1B petitions including H1B extension of stay and H1B change of employer petitions.

    Under Premium Processing USCIS guarantees a response in 15-calendar days. An application for H1B Premium Processing can be made by filing a completed and signed Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service, along with the USCIS Premium Processing filing fee of $1,225.

    The post USCIS Resumes H1B Premium Processing For All H1B Petitions appeared first on VisaPro.

  • USCIS DV 2019 Green Card Lottery Program Begins

    The 2019 Diversity Visa program (DV-2019) is now open.

    Applicants desirous of participating in the DV-2019 Green Card Lottery must submit their entries in the official State Department website for DV-2019. Entries will not be accepted through the U.S. Postal Service.

    The entry submission period for DV-2019 is from October 3, 2017 to November 7, 2017 and the Green Card Lottery entry form will be available for submission only during this period.

    DV Lottery Applicants must note that they may be disqualified for submitting more than one entry, or for not completing the entry form correctly. Applications are therefore advised to read the DV-2019 entry instructions carefully before submitting the application.

    The post USCIS DV 2019 Green Card Lottery Program Begins appeared first on VisaPro.

  • Secure EAD And SSN Through Updated Form I-765

    USCIS has updated the Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization (EAD), to enable foreign nationals in certain visa classifications to now apply for work permit and a social security number (SSN) using a single form.

    Previously, applicants had to submit a Form I-765 to USCIS for an employment authorization document, and then apply for social security number in-person by submitting additional paperwork at the local Social Security Office.

    The revised Form I-765 includes additional questions that allow applicants to apply for SSN or replacement card without visiting a Social Security office. Applicants who receive their approved EAD card from USCIS should receive their Social Security card within the following two weeks.

    The post Secure EAD And SSN Through Updated Form I-765 appeared first on VisaPro.

  • USCIS Premium Processing Begins For H1B Cap 2018 Petitions

    USCIS has resumed premium processing for all H-1B cap petitions subject to the FY 2018 H-1B cap.

    USCIS had previously resumed premium processing for certain H-1B cap-exempt petitions, as well as H-1B petitions filed on behalf of physicians under the Conrad 30 waiver program.

    USCIS has not yet announced when the Premium Processing service will resume for all other H1B petitions. We continue to monitor developments related to USCIS Premium Processing for H1B petitions, and will keep our readers updated of the latest developments

    The post USCIS Premium Processing Begins For H1B Cap 2018 Petitions appeared first on VisaPro.

  • US Embassy Moscow Suspends Nonimmigrant Visa Processing

    U.S. Mission in Russia has announced suspension of all nonimmigrant visa (NIV) operations across Russia beginning August 23, 2017.

    Starting September 1, 2017, all nonimmigrant visa interviews will only be conducted at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. While nonimmigrant visa interviews will resume at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow from September 1, 2017, nonimmigrant visa interviews at the U.S. Consulates in St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, and Vladivostok will remain suspended until further notice. The U.S. Embassy in Moscow will continue to process nonimmigrant visas without an interview for those who qualify.

    Visa applicants who have their NIV interviews canceled will receive an email with a phone number to call to reschedule their interview at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow for a later date.

    NIV Processing for Visa Applicants from Belarus

    The U.S. Embassy in Moscow and the U.S. Consulate in St. Petersburg will also no longer accept new visa applications for residents of Belarus. Nonimmigrant visa appointments for Belarussian applicants who have already paid the application fee will be rescheduled. Residents of Belarus have been advised to schedule NIV appointments at the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw, Kyiv or Vilnius.

    The post US Embassy Moscow Suspends Nonimmigrant Visa Processing appeared first on VisaPro.

  • Premium Processing For Certain H-1B Cap Exempt Petitions

    USCIS has resumed premium processing of H1B cap-exempt petitions filed by:

    • Institutions of higher education
    • Nonprofits related to or affiliated with an institution of higher education
    • Nonprofit research or governmental research organizations

    Premium processing has also resumed for H1B petitions filed on behalf of Beneficiaries who will be employed at a qualifying cap-exempt institution, organization or entity.

    USCIS has not yet announced when the Premium Processing service will resume for other H1B petitions. We continue to monitor developments related to USCIS Premium Processing for H1B petitions, and will keep our readers updated of the latest developments.

    The post Premium Processing For Certain H-1B Cap Exempt Petitions appeared first on VisaPro.

  • USCIS Visa Bulletin June 2017 Highlights
    The U.S. Department of State Visa Bulletin June 2017 shows retrogression in EB-1 China and EB-1 India in the Application Final Action Dates chart. EB-2 China and EB-2 India advanced marginally. No change was seen in the Dates for Filing Applications chart for the employment based visa preference categories. USCIS is yet to announce which chart may be used in June 2017 for filing applications for Adjustment of Status with USCIS. Unless USCIS indicates otherwise, applicants seeking to file for adjustment of status must follow the dates in the Application Final Action Dates chart to determine when they could file their adjustment of status applications. June 2017 Visa Bulletin Highlights The following are the key highlights in the Application Final Action Dates chart of June 2017 Visa Bulletin: Priority date for EB-1 China and EB-1 India retrogressed to January 1, 2012. EB-1 Priority Workers Category remains Current for all countries. Priority date for EB-2 China advanced from February 8, 2013 to March 1, 2013. In the EB-2 Category for India, the cut-off date advanced from June 22, 2008 to July 1, 2008. The EB-2 Category is Current for all countries other than India and China. In the EB-3 Professionals and Skilled Workers Category, priority date for mainland China remained stagnant on October 1, 2014. Priority date for EB-3 India advanced from March 25, 2005 to May 15, 2005. The priority date for mainland China under the EB-3 Other Workers Category advanced from March 8, 2006 to July 15, 2006. EB-3 Philippines advanced from January 1, 2013 to May 1, 2013. In the EB-3 category, priority date advanced from March 15, 2017 to April 15, 2017 for all countries other than India, China, and Philippines. About Visa Bulletin The Department of State (DOS) publishes two separate charts for the employment based and family based visa preference categories every month: Chart 1 – Application Final Action Dates; and Chart 2 – Dates for Filing Applications The “Application Final Action …
  • USCIS Completes Data Entry Of FY 2018 H1B Cap Petitions

    U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has completed data entry of all FY 2018 H1B Cap petition selected in the H1B lottery. USCIS will now begin returning all H1B Cap petitions that were not selected in the 2017 H1B lottery. USCIS has not provided a time frame for returning these petitions, but has stated that it will issue an announcement once all the unselected petitions have been returned.

    Transfer of H1B Cap Petitions

    USCIS is transferring some 2017 H1B Cap petitions from Vermont Service Center to California Service Center. Petitioners whose cases are transferred will receive a notification in the mail in this regard.

    NOTE: Petitioners receiving a notification regarding transfer of H1B Cap petitions must make sure to send all future correspondence regarding the case to the Service Center processing the petition.

    The post USCIS Completes Data Entry Of FY 2018 H1B Cap Petitions appeared first on VisaPro.

  • CBP Global Entry Program For Argentina
    Starting May 8, 2017, Citizens of Argentina can begin applying to enroll in the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) “Global Entry” Trusted Traveler Program. Argentina becomes the tenth country overall whose Citizens will be eligible to enroll in Global Entry. In addition to Argentina, Citizens of Colombia, Germany, Mexico, the Netherlands, Panama, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom may apply for Global Entry membership. Canadian Citizens and residents enrolled in NEXUS may also use the Global Entry kiosks. About The CBP Global Entry Program The CBP Global Entry Trusted Traveler Program allows for expedited clearance of pre-approved, low-risk travelers coming to the U.S. It streamlines the screening process at airports for trusted travelers, and is currently available at 52 U.S. airports and 15 Preclearance locations. The Global Entry program allows its members to bypass traditional CBP inspection lines and use an automated kiosk to complete their admission to the United States, thus reducing processing time. How To Apply For Global Entry Membership Citizens of Argentina will be able to apply for Global Entry using the Global Online Enrollment System (GOES). The application seeking Global Entry membership must be submitted online through GOES. There is a non-refundable application fee of $100 for a five-year Global Entry membership. Once the application is approved, the applicant will schedule an interview with a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer to determine the applicant’s eligibility. The post CBP Global Entry Program For Argentina appeared first on VisaPro. …


Archived Snapshot: 2017-03-30

OFLC Updates Prevailing Wage Data li{padding-bottom:10px}p{line-height:24px}

The Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) has uploaded the new prevailing wage data.

The new prevailing wage data from the Occupational Emp…

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DOL Issues Final Rule Delaying 2011 H-2B Wage Rule The Department of Labor (DOL) has published a final rule to delay indefinitely the effective date of the Wage Methodology for the Temporary Non-Agricultural Employment H-2B Program final rule (2011 Wage Rule)…

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H-2B Wage Methodology Interim Final Rule Published On April 24, 2013 the Department of Labor (DOL) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a joint Interim Final Rule, Wage Methodology for the Temporary Non-Agricultural Employment H-2B P…

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DOL announces H-2A and H-2B Electronic Filing Implementation The Department of Labor (DOL) has announced implementation of electronic filing in the H-2A and H-2B visa programs through the DOL's iCERT Visa Portal System. Electronic filing in the H-2B program will begin on…

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DOL announcement on change in Chicago National Processing Center address DOL has announced change in the address of the Chicago National Processing Center (CNPC). Applicants have been advised to, beginning August 2, 2012, direct their hard copy filings for the D-1, H-2A and H-2B progra…

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Company pays nearly $258,000 in back wages to 21 IT workers on H-1B In a recent press release, the US Department of Labor (DOL) has informed that following an investigation by its Wage and Hour Division (WHD), a software development and IT staffing company in Montgomery has paid $…

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Technology Company to pay more than $740,000 in back wages for H-1B violations U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) Wage and Hour Division (WHD) has announced that following an investigation by the WHD that found violations of the H-1B visa program, Semafor Technologies LLC in Norcross, Ge…

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DOL announces address change for Chicago NPC The Department of Labor (DOL) has published a Notice in the Federal Register announcing a change in the location where applications for temporary labor certification programs will be filed and/or are being process…

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OFLC Announces H-2B Ombudsman Program The Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) has announced the expansion of the H-2A Ombudsman Program to include the H-2B Program community. OFLC has stated that the H-2B Ombudsman Program aims to facilitate …

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2012 H-2B Final Rule: DOL issues new Guidance in Federal Register The Department of Labor (DOL) has issued a new guidance in the Federal Register, providing notice of the judicial order enjoining it from implementing and enforcing the 2012 HFin…

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DOL announcement on new H2B Regulations 2012 DOL has announced that on April 26, 2012, the new H2B Regulations 2012 was preliminarily enjoined by the U.S. District Court for Northern District of Florida, Pensacola Division, and was never implemented. Therefo…

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Changes to H-2B Labor Certification Process: DOL announces revisions to Transition Period Department of Labor (DOL) has announced that the new H-2B Final Rule will not be operative until April 27, 2012. It may be recollected that DOL had earlier published a guidance providing that applications postmark…

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H-2B Final Rule: DOL issues Guidelines on Transition Procedures On February 21, 2012, the Department of Labor (DOL) published a Final Rule amending Hregulations. The HFinal Rule becomes effective on April 23, 2012. All applications filed on or after that date will need…

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DOL issues Final Rule amending H-2B Regulations The Department of Labor has issued a Final Rule amending the regulations governing the labor certification process for the temporary employment of H-2B foreign workers in the U.S. The new regulations will go into …

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DOL Solicits Nominations for 2012 ERISA Advisory Council The U.S. Department of Labor's Employee Benefits Security Administration is soliciting nominations to fill five three-year vacancies on the Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans, known as the ERISA Advisory Council. The deadline to submit nominations is Sept.16.
The 15-m…

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DOL Certifies More Than 5,500 Workers in 16 states as Eligible to Apply for Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) The U.S. Department of Labor today announced that approximately 5,500 workers
from companies in 16 states Alabama, California, Connecticut, Georgia,
Illinois, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, New York, Ohio, Oregon, South Carolina,
Tennessee, Utah, Virginia and Wisconsin &#82…

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Federal Minimum Wage Will Increase to $7.25 on July 24 The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) reminds employers and employees that the federal minimum wage will increase to $7.25 on Friday, July 24. With this change, employees who are covered by the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) will be entitled to pay no less than $7.25 per hour.

"This…

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DOL's Notice of Injunction against Suspension of December 2008 H-2A Final Rule The DOL's Office of Foreign Labor Certification has published the following notice on its website on July 6, 2009.

The DOL notice says:

On June 29, the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of North Carolina issued a preliminary injunction against the Department's Final Susp…

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Frequently Asked Questions on Suspension of H-2A Final Rule The US Department of Labor (DOL), on June 1, 2009, released some frequently asked questions and answers (FAQs) regarding the May 29, 2009 suspension of a December 18, 2008 H-2A final rule. The suspension of the H-2A final rule will take effect on June 29, 2009.

Question: What has …

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DOL Postpones Use of iCERT System for LCAs The Department of Labor (DOL) has postponed obligatory use of the new iCERT online portal for labor condition applications (LCAs). Employers will now be able to use the legacy online system for H-1B, VisaPro.com for more immigration news updates!


DOL's Interim Final Rule on H-2A Filing Procedures [Federal Register: April 16, 2009 (Volume 74, Number 72)]

[Rules and Regulations]

[Page 17597-17601]

From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
————————————-

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Employment and Training…

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Department of Labor Update LCAs and PERM Applications The Department of Labor (DOL) provided an update regarding the new iCERT system which will be used to file labor condition applications (LCAs) and PERM applications. The iCERT system is now planned to launch on April 15, 2009 for LCA filings. Although the DOL had planned to open the iCERT system …

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DOL's Policy and Planning Guidance for Employment and Training Programs under ARRA The U.S. Department of Labor today issued policy guidance to states and outlying areas for the implementation of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) investments in core employment and training programs. This critical investment of $3,514,500,000 in the nation's workforce system …

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Beginning June 1, Land and Sea Travelers Will Require Passport to Enter the US Travel document requirements will soon change for citizens of the United States, Canada and Bermuda who are entering the United States by land or sea. Beginning June 1, 2009, citizens of these countries will be required to present a passport or other acceptable travel document when entering the U…

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DOL FAQs Following Notice of Proposed Suspension of H-2A Rule DOL's Office of Foreign Labor Certification released FAQs regarding the department's consideration of H-2As recent notice of proposed suspension of the H-2A final rule published in December 2008.

Frequently Asked Questions Notice of Proposed Suspension

Q…

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U.S. Department of Labor Proposes to Suspend H-2A Rule The U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration (ETA) today announced the proposed suspension for nine months of a final rule implementing changes to the H-2A program, which allows U.S. agricultural businesses to employ f…

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DOL Updates on the PERM Labor Certification Process The Department of Labor (DOL) has steadily increased enforcement measures which have in turn led to an increase in the amount of audits and processing times for PERM applications. By way of background, the PERM application is the first required step for many employers seeking to sponsor a foreign…

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Acting U.S. Labor Secretary Edward C. Hugler's Statement on January 2009 employment numbers Acting U.S. Secretary of Labor Edward C. Hugler issued the following statement on the January 2009 Employment Situation report released today:

"The Employment Situation report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics today underscores the seriousness of the economic situation. As these…

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DOL Projected Timing for New 9035 and 9089 Forms The Department of Labor (DOL) announced that it plans to phase in the new Labor Condition Application (LCA) Form ETA-9035 starting April 15, 2009. The prior version of the form will be accepted through May 14, 2009. Additionally, the DOL will phase in the implementation of the new PERM Form ETA-9…

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DOL's Notice of Public Briefings on New ETA 9035 and ETA 9089 Forms The Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) in the Department of Labor's Employment & Training Administration (ETA) has been re-engineering several of its program forms to improve the information it collects from the public. These changes are intended to improve the application and day-to-day o…

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DOS Releases February 2009 Visa Bulletin The Department of States (DOL) has released the Visa Bulletin for the month of February. The February 2009, Visa Bulletin has brought some very good news in the EB-2 category for Indians and for the Chinese in both the EB-2 and EB-3 categories. Unfortunately, EB-3 ROW and EB-3 India remain …

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Sandia Corp. to Pay More Than $2 Million in Overtime Back Wages to More Than 2,657 Employees Sandia Corp., doing business as Sandia National Laboratory in Albuquerque, has agreed to pay $2,077,248 in overtime back wages to 2,657 research employees after a U.S. Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division investigation found violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

"Among …

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Latest on H-1B: LCA Processing Times are expected to Increase in 2009 It may come as a surprise to most of the prospective employers who are planning to file H-1B visa petitions on April 1, 2009 that the Labor Condition Application (LCA) processing times are expected to increase. However employ…

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DOL's Reminder for I-140 Labor Certification Expiration All the I-140's (Immigrant Petition for an Alien Worker) based on labor certifications that have been approved before July 16, 2007, must be received by the by the Service Centers on January 11, 2008 so as to qualif…

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DOL Publishes Final H-2A Rule The U.S. Department of Labor's Employment and Training Administration (ETA) and Employment Standards Administration (ESA) today published a final rule that modernizes the H-2A program for employing foreign workers in temporary or …

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DOL Publishes Final H-2B Rule The U.S. Department of Labor has issued a final rule that enhances workers' protections and modernizes the application process under the H-2B temporary labor certification program. These changes and others finalized by the U…

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DOL Awards $10 Million to Projects Promoting Careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) today announced five awards worth nearly $10 million to build regional workforce investment system capacity to support careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

"This $10 million initiative will help workers and youth prepare fo…

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DOL announces more than $22 million in aid to Louisiana for recovery from Hurricane Gustav The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) today announced a $22,200,000 grant to the state of Louisiana to fund approximately 4,000 temporary jobs for cleanup and recovery efforts following Hurricane Gustav.

"This $22 million emergency grant will fund 4,000 jobs for workers to help Louisiana com…

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New Passport Card Production Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Passport Services Brenda S. Sprague and Regional Director of the Miami Passport Office Ryan M. Dooley will participate in a press conference at the Port of Miami, (Miami, Florida) on Monday, August 18, 2008 at 10:00 a.m. to discuss the production of the new U…

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U.S. Labor Department proposes rules on investment advice exemption for 401(k) plans and IRAs The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) today announced publication of two proposed rules under the Pension Protection Act (PPA) to make investment advice more accessible for millions of Americans in 401(k) type plans and individual retirement accounts (IRAs). The proposed regulation and class exemption …

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DOL Announces to Grant $7.4 million to Help Texas Clean Up and Recover from Hurricane Dolly The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) today announced a $7,350,171 grant to Texas to create approximately 475 temporary jobs to assist in cleanup and recovery efforts as a result of Hurricane Dolly.

"This $7.4 million grant will provide Texans with temporary jobs assisting in disaster relie…

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U.S. Department of Labor announces grant exceeding $758,000 to assist trade-affected workers in Massachusetts WASHINGTON The U.S. Department of Labor today announced a $758,714 grant to assist approximately 170 workers affected by ongoing layoffs at the Alcatel-Lucent plant in North Andover, Mass.

"This grant will provide these workers with access to services to help them return to work …

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U.S. Department of Labor awards $250,000 to develop strategic economic growth plans for western Kentucky WASHINGTON The U.S. Department of Labor today announced a $250,000 Regional Innovation Grant to a nine-county area of western Kentucky and one county in Tennessee to establish plans for promoting economic growth.

"This $250,000 grant to the West Kentucky Workforce Investment Boar…

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U.S. Department of Labor Initiates Supervised Recruitment of Permanent Labor Certification Applications filed by Immigration Law Firm Department acts to protect employment opportunities for American workers

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) today announced that it has begun placing pending permanent labor certification applications (LCA) filed by the Cohen & Grigsby law firm into department-supervised recruitmen…

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U.S. Labor Department's the American Workplace: A 21st Century Vision' summit sets stage for disability employment The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) today kicked off its "Transforming the American Workplace: A 21st Century Vision" summit, which focuses on including people with disabilities in the American workforce and reduced barriers to employment. The invitation-only summit continues through tomorrow at Gall…

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U.S. Department of Labor auditing all permanent labor certification applications filed by major immigration law firm The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) today announced that it has begun auditing all permanent labor certification applications filed by attorneys at Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy LLP.

The DOL …

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DOL ETA Announces Planned Changes in NonElectronic Filing Locations The DOL's Employment and Training Administration (ETA) recently announced
administrative changes in the locations where future non-electronic applications
must be filed under the permanent foreign labor certification program and temporary
foreign labor certification programs administered…

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DOL announces mailing addresses for PERM applications The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) of the Department of Labor (DOL)
has issued a notice to announce the mailing addresses for employers that choose
to file applications by mail under the new permanent foreign labor certification
program. The regulation to implement the re-enginee…

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DOL unveils Email Subscription Service Website Users Can Receive Automatic E-mail
Updates

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department
of Labor (DOL) today announced a new effort to …

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