Month: June 2008

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USCIS to Issue Two-Year Employment Authorization Documents

USCIS to Issue Two-Year Employment Authorization Documents
New EADs Limited to Certain Individuals Who Have Applied for LPR Status

WASHINGTON – U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that beginning on June 30, 2008 it will issue Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) valid for two years. The new two-year EAD is only available to individuals who have filed to become a lawful permanent resident (LPR) using a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, and filed for employment authorization under Section 274.a.12(c)(9) of Title 8, Code of Federal Regulations (8 C.F.R.) but are unable to become an LPR because an immigrant visa number is not currently available.

USCIS will decide whether to renew an EAD for either a one or two year validity period based on the most recent Department of State Visa Bulletin available at http://travel.state.gov/visa/frvi/bulletin/bulletin_1360.html.

For applicants who have an available immigrant visa number and who are filing for employment authorization under 8 C.F.R. Section 274.a.12(c)(9), USCIS will continue to grant EADs that are valid for one-year. USCIS may issue a two-year renewal EAD if the applicant’s immigrant visa availability date retrogresses (when actual demand for visa numbers exceeds forecasted supply) after the Form I-485 is filed.

If an individual requests to replace an EAD that has not expired, USCIS will issue a replacement EAD that is valid through the same date as the previously issued EAD. However, if the previous EAD has expired, USCIS will process the request for a renewal EAD and determine the appropriate validity period based on the applicant’s priority date and the Department of State Visa Bulletin.

For more information on Employment Authorization Documents, please contact the USCIS National Customer Service Center at (800) 375-5283 or review the USCIS Employment Authorization Documents web page at: http://www.uscis.gov/.

by SCwpadmin SCwpadmin No Comments

USCIS to Offer Premium Processing For Certain Form I-140 Petitions

Office of Communications USCIS Update June 11, 2008
USCIS to Offer Premium Processing For Certain Form I-140 Petitions
Service Begins June 16, 2008

WASHINGTON- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that on June 16, 2008, it will begin accepting Premium Processing Service requests for Forms I-140 (Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker) filed on behalf of certain alien workers who are nearing the end of their sixth year in H-1B nonimmigrant status.
Premium Processing Service offers 15 calendar-day processing for designated employment-based petitions and applications upon request. There is a nonrefundable fee of $1000 for this service. During the 15-day period, USCIS will issue either an approval or denial notice, a notice of intent to deny, a request for evidence, or open an investigation for fraud or misrepresentation. USCIS previously designated certain classifications under Form I-140 for Premium Processing Service in the May 23, 2006 issue of the Federal Register. See 71 FR 29662.
USCIS is limiting Premium Processing Service for Form I-140 petitions that are filed on behalf of aliens:
– Who are currently in an H-1B nonimmigrant status;
– Whose sixth year will end within 60 days;
– Who are only eligible for a further extension of H-1B nonimmigrant status under section 104(c) of the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-first Century Act of 2000 (AC21); and
– Who are ineligible to extend their H-1B status under section 106(a) of AC21.

Section 104(c) of AC21 permits applicants to extend their stay in H-1B nonimmigrant status in increments of up to three years, provided they are the beneficiary of an approved Form I-140 and an immigrant visa is not immediately available. Section 106(a) of AC21 permits applicants to extend their stay in H-1B nonimmigrant status in increments of up to one year, provided the Form I-140 petition or underlying labor certification has been pending for at least 365 days.

For more details on Premium Processing Service for the Form I-140 petitions described in this announcement, visit the USCIS web site at http://www.uscis.gov/files/article/premiumproc_factsheet_i140_061108.pdf.
More information on Premium Processing Service in general can be found on the USCIS web site at www.uscis.gov, or by calling the USCIS National Customer Service Center at (800) 375-5283.

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FY2009 Cap-Subject H-1B Update

AILA InfoNet Doc. No. 08061261 (posted Jun. 12, 2008)

USCIS Service Center Operations has provided the following information regarding processing cases under the FY2009 H-1B cap:

1. Except for cases that were being reviewed as potential duplicate filings, all receipts have been issued for those cases selected in the random lottery. The CSC and VSC completed data entry on all selected cases on May 23, 2008, and mailing of all receipts was completed on May 24, 2008.

2. Cases that were thought to be duplicate filings are being hand reviewed to determine if they are true duplicates. USCIS has received approximately 500 petitions that are believed to be duplicates. However, some of these were submitted as “protective filings” due to courier delivery confirmation problems or where the petition was sent to an incorrect Service Center. Each will be reviewed and determined on a case-by-case basis. If the second submission was accompanied by an explanation of the reason for the second submission, there is a good chance of acceptance.

3. USCIS has determined that the number of petitions selected during the random selection process will be sufficient to meet the cap limit. Therefore, the use of the reserve/cushion will not be necessary this year. USCIS has begun to mail out rejections this week.

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