Month: August 2010

by SCwpadmin SCwpadmin 333 Comments

New H-1B and L-1 Filing Fees

On August 13, 2010 President Obama signed into law a provision that significantly raises the filing fees for H-1B and L-1 petitions for certain employers. Under the new law, employers with 50 or more employees and more than 50% of their workforce in H or L status will have to pay an additional $2000 and $2250 per H-1B and L-1 petition, respectively.

Additionally, USCIS is putting the burden on the employer to prove that it is not required to pay the new fees. Specifically, petitioning employers are required to submit the new fee or evidence of why they are not subject. The USCIS reports it will issue a Request for Additional Evidence if documentation submitted with the petition is insufficient to prove that the employer is exempt from the fee.

by SCwpadmin SCwpadmin 25 Comments

Employment Authorization Documents

Under the law, USCIS has 90 days to process applications for employment authorization documents (EAD). USCIS policy requires that applications to renew these documents be filed no more than 120 days prior to their expiration. Unfortunately, USCIS is now sometimes pushing up against the 90-day deadline with a result that some applicants are not receiving a new EAD before their prior one expires. Individuals working on an EAD must have a valid EAD in hand in order to be authorized for employment in the United States. Therefore, when adjudication of the EAD is delayed, individuals risk losing their eligibility for employment. Once the EAD application has been pending for 75 days, individuals are allowed to call the USCIS Customer Service number at 1-800-375-5283 to make an inquiry. If the EAD is not adjudicated within 7 days after the individual contacts USCIS Customer Service, the individual’s attorney may pursue the matter through an AILA liaison request.

by SCwpadmin SCwpadmin 22 Comments

H-1B Cap-Subject Visa Petitions Update

USCIS has reported that as of August 6, 2010 it has issued receipts for 28,500 H-1B cap-subject petitions, leaving 36,500 available H-1Bs in the general or “bachelor’s cap” allotment. Additionally, USCIS has issued 11,900 H-1B receipts for those with advanced degrees, leaving 8,100 H1Bs available in the “master’s cap” allotment. In the event that the master’s cap allotment is used up before the general cap allotment, those with advanced degrees will then be counted as part of the general cap allotment