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SEVP Backs Away from Temporary Plan Helping F-1/M-1 Students during the Pandemic

During the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, SEVP instituted temporary measures allowing F-1 and M-1 students to take more classes online than normally permitted under the Regulations. Request Your Complimentary Consultation Generally, SEVP Regulations only permit 1 class online per semester with the remaining credit hours to be taken “in person” at the university. In… [Read More]

H-1B, L-1 and J-1 Visa Alternatives

President Trump’s June 22nd Executive Order was arguably the most aggressive assault on U.S. business immigration of his administration – tying COVID-era unemployment rates to suspension of new H-1B, L-1 and J-1 visas issued outside of the United States. The suspension does not impact foreign nationals already in the United States in a valid visa… [Read More]

USCIS Resumes Premium Processing

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services today announced that it will resume premium processing for Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker and Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Workers, in phases over the next month. Effective June 1, 2020, USCIS will accept Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service for all eligible Form I-140 petitions…. [Read More]

USCIS Announces Delay in H-1B Cap Petition Processing

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced a delay in data entry and receipt notices for FY2021 H-1B cap-subject petitions due to health and safety protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the memo, USCIS will not begin intake processing until at least May 1, 2020. This announcement impacts H-1B Cap cases selected in… [Read More]

2020 H-1B Alternatives

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services indicated it received approximately 275,000 registrations for the available 86,000 slots in the most recent H-1B registration/lottery. With the initial selection complete, employers not selected should consider alternative options – a process that can be daunting any year, and especially now as COVID-19 closures impact USCIS and consular processing…. [Read More]

Impact of Work Closures and Temporary Shutdowns on H-1B Status

Please note, the COVID-19 situation is very fluid and the government agencies are issuing new and changing guidance on an almost daily basis. Before taking any actions, please consult with your counsel at FordMurray for the latest developments and updated guidance on this topic. With many local governments, state governments, and employers instituting mandatory “work… [Read More]

COVID-19 Impacts to FY2021 H-1B Lottery

With online registration for H-1B petitions closing at noon EST on March 20, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is scheduled to begin the H-1B cap lottery for FY 2021 next week, with notifications to employers expected by March 31st. Suspension of Premium Processing USCIS announced today that it is temporarily suspending premium processing… [Read More]

H-1B Online Registration System Opens March 1st

Employers hoping to sponsor a foreign professional on an H-1B visa through the H-1B cap lottery can start to create accounts in preparation for the electronic H-1B registration system, which will begin taking petition registrations on March 1st. The employer registration period marks the start of a new electronic registration system, which will take place… [Read More]