Month: January 2016

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D.C. Federal Court Grants 90 Day STEM Extension

The United States District Court sitting in D.C. ordered that the lawsuit regarding the 17 month STEM OPT extension be stayed further until May 10, 2016.  This means that foreign nationals on STEM OPT may continue to work and their work authorization will remain valid and not impacted by this lawsuit until at least May 10, 2016.

At present, students who graduate with a qualified Science, Technology, Engineering or Math (STEM) degree, and are currently in an approved post-completion OPT period based on their designated STEM degree, may apply for a 17-month STEM extension of their post-completion OPT.  Subsequently, a proposed rule by the Department of Homeland Security sought to extend the available STEM OPT time to a total of 36 months.  However, this past year a lawsuit was brought against the Department of Homeland Security alleging that the original 17 month STEM extension was invalid because the rule was proposed without going through proper notice and comment rulemaking.  Because of this lawsuit, countless foreign nationals working pursuant to their STEM OPT have been unsure if their work permission will continue to be valid and if so for how long.  Additionally, potential STEM OPT applicants have been unsure if they are able to gain work permission under STEM OPT in the future.  Stern & Curray will continue to monitor the status of the STEM OPT lawsuit and will post the most up-to-date information on our blog.  Stay tuned!



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United States Supreme Court Will Hear Case on President Obama’s Executive Actions on Immigration

The United States Supreme Court announced that it has granted the petition for writ of certiorari to hear Texas v. United States, the lawsuit that has stalled President Obama’s executive action programs of DAPA and Expanded DACA from taking effect. The Court is expected to answer the question of whether the President’s executive orders violated the Take Care Clause of the U.S. Constitution at Article II Section III. The Take Care Clause commands that the President take care that the laws of this country be faithfully executed. This ruling will determine the ultimate fate of the President’s long-anticipated programs and will be a key decision in this presidential election year during which immigration is such a hotly debated topic.

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Ken Stern & Emily White Recognized as Top Lawyers

We are proud to share that partners Ken Stern and Emily Assunta White were recognized as Top Lawyers in the field of Immigration Law by 5280 Magazine. Both Ken and Emily were also listed in the 2015 rankings. Attorneys are selected by collecting votes from thousands of Denver area lawyers along with additional research by 5280.

Congratulations, Ken and Emily, for this well-deserved honor!

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Wave of Noncitizens with Final Removal Orders Arrested for Deportation

Over the New Year the Department of Homeland Security carried out an aggressive sweep and arrested 121 noncitizens for deportation. These noncitizens are largely asylum seekers who fled to the United States from Central American last summer. Many of them were residing in Georgia, North Carolina, and Texas, and all of them were subject to final orders of removal for failing to win their asylum cases before the immigration courts. According to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, this large-scale deportation effort is intended deter other immigrants from crossing the US border without permission. While no other raids have been announced, Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s official position is to conduct daily immigration enforcement.

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Theresa A. Vogel Becomes Partner

Stern & Curray is delighted to announce that Theresa A. Vogel has become a Partner. Theresa represents clients in all aspects of business immigration law, focusing on temporary employment visas for professionals, investors, and intra-company transferees, as well as permanent residence. She represents diverse employers and employees from multinational corporations, universities, research institutions, small businesses, and entrepreneurial investors. She also advises clients on I-9 compliance and has successfully assisted large corporate employers in responding to audits from Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Theresa draws upon her prior experience in civil litigation developing “big picture” case strategy and creative solutions to complicated legal issues. “Since Theresa joined the firm in 2013, she has continued to impress us with her innovative strategies which she has used to win some particularly challenging cases,” said Emily Curray, Managing Partner of Stern & Curray.

Theresa completed her law degree at The Catholic University of America-Columbus School of Law with a concentration in International and Comparative Law. Previously, she worked as a Research Assistant with the Jagiellonian University Human Rights Centre in Krakow, Poland where she taught courses on human rights and refugee law and implemented projects funded by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

Congratulations, Theresa, on this important achievement!