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Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration

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  1. CERTAIN H-4s WILL GET WORK AUTHORIZATION -- WILL IT INCLUDE H-4s OF HEALTHCARE WORKER

    by , 04-09-2014 at 08:55 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    by Chris Musillo

    The White House yesterday has announced a series of notable improvements to the nation’s business immigration scheme. The main one of interest to readers of this blog will be that certain H-4 visa holders will be authorized to receive employment authorization cards (EAD cards). These EAD cards will allow these H-4 workers to work at any US employer for the duration of the validity of the card. The period of validity is expected to mirror the H-1 primary Beneficiary’s period of validity.

    However the press release limits the work authorization to “spouses of certain high-skill workers on H-1B visas.” The press release does not define “high-skill workers” and so it is unclear if the White House means STEM workers, all H-1B workers, or some other definition.

    A 2012 U.S. Department of Homeland Security - Retrospective Review of Existing Regulations – Progress Report sought to extend employment authorization to H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants “who have begun the process of seeking lawful permanent resident status through employment and have extended their authorized period of admission or "stay" in the United States under the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-First Century Act of 2000 (AC21).” MU Law first noted this Report in December 2012.

    That language appeared to limit H-4 EAD authorization only to spouses of H-1Bs who were stuck in their H-1B beyond six years because of retrogression. It remains to be seen what the White House means by this latest press release. Nonetheless yesterday’s announcement clearly is a step in a positive direction.

    Read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com. You can also visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. H-1B CAP HAS BEEN REACHED

    by , 04-07-2014 at 04:40 PM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    by Chris Musillo

    In a surprise to no one, USCIS announced today that it has reached the H-1B cap for both the regular and master’s cap. The USCIS is expected to hold an H-1B lottery within the next week.

    If your H-1B petition is filed under the Premium Processing Service (PPS) you should hear of its acceptance no later than April 28. However if your PPS petition is not accepted, it may take until mid-May before you find out that the case was not accepted under the H-1B lottery.

    Reminder: The PPS does not give a petitioner any greater chance at winning the H-1B lottery, but it does allow for speedier notice and decision-making.

    If your H-1B petition is filed under the Regular Processing path it may be until May or even June before your find out if your H-1B petition is accepted under the lottery or not. Last year it took about 10 weeks before all H-1B petitioners were notified of their acceptance or rejection.

    Read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com. You can also visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  3. H-1B CAP PROJECTION AND TIMING

    by , 04-04-2014 at 09:41 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    by Chris Musillo

    Projection

    The H-1B cap will be reached this year on its first day of eligibility. MU Law expects around twice as many H-1B petitions as allowed will be filed this year. We are basing this projection on our internal H-1B cap filings, discussions with other AILA attorneys, our historical experience with H-1B numbers since the mid-1990s, and media sources. That having been said, our projection is not a scientific one. Indeed, no one knows exactly how many H-1Bs will be received.

    The H-1B cap petitions will be divided into two categories: (1) Those who have graduated from US Master Degree programs; and (2) all other H1-B cap-subject petitions (“regular H-1B cap”). The US Masters category has a quota of 20,000 H-1B petitions. The regular H-1B cap has a quota of 65,000 H-1B petitions.

    Timing

    Since both H-1B categories will be oversubscribed, the USCIS will hold an H-1B lottery. The H-1B lottery will be held next week. Last year the H-1B lottery was held April 9, 2013. Although the H-1B lottery will be held next week, the USCIS did not notify all petitioners of the outcome until June 2013.

    If a petitioner wants know sooner, the H-1B may be filed via the Premium Processing Service (PPS). The PPS does not give a petitioner any greater chance at winning lottery, but it does allow for speedier notice and decision-making.

    Read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com. You can also visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  4. CHILEANS MAY NOW USE VWP

    by , 04-01-2014 at 08:28 AM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    by Chris Musillo

    Earlier this month the United States announced that Chile would join 37 other counties on the Visa Waiver list. The original implementation date was May 1, 2014. Vice President Joe Biden accelerated the implementation date to March 31, 2104.

    Chilean passport holders with both an approved Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) and an e-passport will be able to visit the United States without nonimmigrant visitor visas. Chilean nationals seeking to enter the US for pleasure or business will no longer have to apply for a B1/B2 visa.

    Chile is one of America’s most favored nations in US immigration. Not only is Chile now the first Latin American country to qualify for the Visa Waiver program, it is only one of five countries who may avoid the onerous H-1B cap by filing a Trade Visa. The other four Trade Visa Countries are: Canada (TN), Mexico (TN, Australia (E-3), and Singapore (H-1B1).


    Read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com. You can also visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  5. H-1B CAP PREMIUM PETITIONS START PROCESSING NO LATER THAN APRIL 28

    by , 03-26-2014 at 12:42 PM (Chris Musillo on Nurse and Allied Health Immigration)
    by Chris Musillo

    The USCIS has issued their annual H-1B Cap press release. The most notable news is that USCIS announced that it will start the processing of Premium Processing petitions no later than April 28, 2014. The press release also confirms that USCIS expects to receive in excess of the H-1B cap for both the masters and regular H-1B cap. All told, many more than the Congressional mandated cap of 85,000 H-1B petitions will be filed by employers and receipted by USCIS.


    A second notice marks the H-1B cap filing "tips". This page advises the public on filing addresses, the order of documents, LCAs, and other key elements of a properly-filed H-1B cap-subject petition.

    Read the Musillo Unkenholt Healthcare and Immigration Law Blog at www.musillo.com or www.ilw.com. You can also visit us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.



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