USCIS Exempts Biometric Services Fee for all Form I-539 Applicants

Beginning Oct. 1, 2023, USCIS is exempting the $85 biometric services fee as part of the application process for Form I-539. You do not need to pay the fee if your application is postmarked Oct. 1 or later. However, if you file Form I-539 prior to Oct. 1, certain filers will still be scheduled for … Read more

USCIS Has Reached Fiscal Year 2023 H-1B Cap

USCIS has officially announced that it has received a sufficient number of petitions needed to reach the congressionally mandated 65,000 H-1B visa regular cap and the 20,000 H-1B visa U.S. advanced degree exemption, known as the master’s cap, for fiscal year (FY) 2023. No additional selections from this year’s lottery will be made. USCIS has … Read more

USCIS Announces Automatic Extension of Certain EAD’s

USCIS has announced that effective tomorrow, May 4, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is temporarily amending existing DHS regulations related to expiring employment authorization and Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) for certain renewal applicants. The prior extension period of up to 180 days will automatically increase to up to 540 days from the expiration … Read more

Vaccination Requirements at Canada/Mexico Land Borders

Beginning on January 22, 2022, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security now requires non-U.S. individuals seeking to enter the United States from Canada or Mexico by land or ferry to provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19.  These new restrictions apply to non-U.S. individuals who are traveling for both essential and non-essential reasons. They do not apply to U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent … Read more

Updated USCIS Guidance on National Interest Waivers

On January 21, 2022, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced updated guidance on adjudicating requests for “National Interest Waivers” of the job offer and labor certification requirements for certain advanced degree professionals and individuals of exceptional ability. This guidance includes a new emphasis on the unique considerations involving persons with advanced degrees in science, technology, … Read more

USCIS Updates Employment Eligibility Rules for H-4, E, and L Spouses

On November 12, 2021 USCIS issued a comprehensive Policy Memorandum which provides immediate relief for the H-4, E, and L Dependent Spouses who seek to engage in employment in the U.S. Certain H-4 spouses* who have been granted employment authorization and are seeking to extend their permission to work, are now eligible for an automatic … Read more

U.S. Consulates May Now Waive H-1, H-3, H-4, L, O, P, and Q Visa Interviews

The State Department has announced that through December 2022, U.S. Consulates may now waive the in-person interview requirement for the above-named temporary employment nonimmigrant visa applicants. The conditions for a waiver to be granted include the following: The Applicant must have been previously issued a visa of any type, and never refused a visa, unless … Read more

Department of State Announces DV 2023 Visa Lottery

The Department of State has announced the procedures for the upcoming Visa Lottery. Detailed information is available on the Department of State website at: The registration period opens Wednesday, October 6, 2021 at 12:00 noon, EDT. Entries must be submitted online by 12:00 noon, EST on Tuesday, November 9, 2021. The Visa Lottery enables … Read more

Ban on Nonimmigrant Visa Issuance Has Not Been Extended

Presidential Proclamation 10052, which temporarily suspended the entry of certain H-1B, H-2B, J (for certain categories within the Exchange Visitor Program), and L nonimmigrants, expired on March 31, 2021 and has not been extended. Visa applicants who have not yet been interviewed or scheduled for an interview will have their applications prioritized and processed in … Read more

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Venezuela

The Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro N. Mayorkas, has designated Venezuela for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for a period of 18 months, until September 2022. The designation was based on Venezuela’s unsafe conditions including, a complex humanitarian crisis marked by widespread hunger and malnutrition, increasing influence and involvement of non-state armed groups, repression, and collapsing … Read more