Immigration Section
April 2014 Issue
Content is updated daily

Industry News

Deadline Passes For REAL ID; States Still Falling Short Of Requirements

The deadline for states to adopt REAL ID standards passed on January 15, 2013, and three quarters of U.S. states still fall short of the new requirements....More

Russian Adoption Ban Drives International Trend To 15-Year Low

With international adoptions by Americans already experiencing a sharp downward trend in recent years, the waning figures are likely to drop even further with a new law passed by Russian President Vladimir Putin....More

Census Data Shows Significant Decrease In Illegal Immigration Figures

For the first time in over a decade, census data confirms that the number of illegal immigrants within the U.S is experiencing a steady and significant decline. The estimated number of illegal immigrants now stands at 11.1 million — down from its 2007 peak of 12 million. Factors such as a struggling U.S. economy, an aging Mexican population, and new immigration legislation have all played a part in the dramatic shift in immigration trends....More

New Immigration Fee Impacts All Foreign Nationals Seeking Residency

Effective February 1, 2013, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will require a $165 immigration fee from all foreign nationals seeking permanent residence in the United States....More

USCIS Online Resource Streamlines Immigration Process For Foreign Entrepreneurs

In an effort to enhance the immigration process for incoming business entrepreneurs, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently launched a new online resource center designed to fit their specific needs and streamline the application process for a variety of visa types....More

Pace Of 'Deferred Action' Applications Slows Down

Applications by young immigrants for work permits and deportation deferrals under the government’s Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals policy have slowed since the program began in August....More

USCIS Extends E-Verify, Investor Visa, Religious Worker Visa Programs

A new federal law extends several USCIS Immigration Programs, including the E-Verify worker eligibility program and special visa programs, through September 30, 2015....More

Unconventional Visa Allows For 'Best Of The Best' Entry Into U.S.

Recent media reports about a Canadian-born burlesque dancer who a received a green card based on her “extraordinary ability” have called attention to a little known immigration law, known as the E11, which grants green cards to individuals who demonstrate “genius” ability in their field — even if it’s an unusual ability....More

Foreign Investment In U.S. Real Estate Rises Sharply In 2012

The landscape of American property ownership is becoming more international, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). NAR data shows a significant increase in the number of foreigners purchasing American homes, with Canadians, Chinese and Mexican home purchasers now comprising the top three international investors in U.S. real estate....More

Approaching Real ID Deadline Challenges States For Compliance

States have until January 15th, 2013, to fully implement the Real ID Act, a law that created a set of national security standards for government-issued IDs. But since being enacted in 2005, the law has been plagued with challenges and resistance from states....More

Immigration Laws Causing Serious Paperwork Bottlenecks In Some States

A new immigration law in Georgia is causing substantial problems when licensing health care workers and other professionals in the state because of increased paperwork requirements. And Georgia isn’t alone in dealing with the paperwork crush, as other states also are implementing similar immigration laws....More

Anti-'Notario' Efforts Expanding To Different Nationalities

Efforts to crack down on immigration services fraud are expanding beyond the traditional focus on Notarios Publicos to combat scams targeting immigrants from other cultures....More

Wait Times Increase As Immigration Courts Battle Climbing Backlog

Despite a recent decrease in new court filings, the backlog for immigration cases continues to grow — according to data gathered by the non-profit TRAC Immigration Project. As a result, immigration service providers can expect to deal with  increased processing and wait times for their clients....More

Russia and U.S Sign Agreement To Expedite, Safeguard International Adoptions

Russian President Putin has signed into law a new bilateral adoption agreement with the United States that will help expedite and improve inter-country adoption processes and add safeguards that protect adopted children, birth parents, and adoptive parents.  Both countries are now working expeditiously to implement the agreement, which may result in an increased number of international adoptions....More

Proposal And Passing Of Immigration Laws Slow In 2012

After a considerable spike in immigration-related legislation in 2011, a recent report indicates that the pace of such laws — proposed and enacted — has significantly decreased in 2012. The report cites pending cases as a potential cause for the slowdown, and lists law enforcement, employment authorization, and identification issues as continued hot topics for state lawmakers....More

Same-Sex Relationship Status Could Help Delay Deportation

Undocumented immigrants in long-standing, same-sex relationships with U.S. citizens are likely to begin pulling together the documentation proving their status after the U.S. Department of Homeland Security announced that they could be granted a reprieve from deportation....More

Oaths Vs. Affirmations: Know The Difference

When executing a jurat, some signers’ personal beliefs may cause them to object to swearing an oath of truthfulness to a higher power. In these circumstances, the signer may make an alternative promise called an affirmation instead. An affirmation is a promise to be truthful based on the signer’s personal honor....More

Feds Announce Details On New Deferred Action Policy

Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano announced last month that immigrants who meet several key criteria will be eligible for deferred action of up to two years, and will be able to apply for work authorization during that time. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently released information regarding eligibility and application requirements....More

USCIS Reaches 2012 H-1B Visa Cap; Report Argues For Cap Increase

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in June reached its limit for H-1B specialty occupations visas for fiscal year 2013; however, a recent study argues that the cap figure of 65,000, which has remained the same for the eight years, is not meeting the increased demand for skilled workers in certain professional industries, including science, mathematics, engineering and technology....More

Immigrant Communities Warn Against Notario Fraud Following Deferred Action Ruling

The recent deferred action ruling by the Department of Homeland Security is likely to open new floodgates for thousands of immigrants to apply for deportation reprieves and job eligibility, which has many communities bracing for a potential spike in immigration assistance fraud. Korean civil rights groups have joined other immigrant communities in issuing warnings to their undocumented youth to be aware of immigration assistance scams....More

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