Archives: Trump Administration

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Travel Ban Update: Grandparents and Other Close Relatives

In a one-paragraph ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court, disagreeing with the Administration, allowed the District Court’s injunction to stand with regard to relatives. Individuals from the six designated countries with grandparents and other close relatives in the United States will not be subject to the travel ban – for now. The Court, however, put the … Continue Reading

15,000 Increase in H-2B Visas Comes with Strings Attached

An additional 15,000 H-2B visas will be released in response to industry demand. The USCIS will begin accepting petitions on July 19, 2017, for the fiscal year which ends on September 30, 2017. Petitions will be accepted until the 15,000 visas run out or until September 15, 2017, whichever comes first. This is only a … Continue Reading

State Department Guidance to U.S. Diplomatic Posts on Information Sharing Standards

President Donald Trump’s March 6th revised Executive Order directs the Secretaries of State and Homeland Security, the Attorney General, and the Director of National Intelligence to review information sharing and develop uniform screening and vetting standards and procedures for visas and other immigration benefits. In June, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held this review could … Continue Reading

Travel Ban Does Not Apply to Grandparents and Other Close Relatives, Hawaii Court Rules

Judge Derrick Watson in Honolulu has enjoined the federal government from using President Donald Trump’s partially reinstated travel ban to bar grandparents and other close relatives from entering the United States. He also has enjoined the government from banning refugees who are the beneficiaries of a sponsorship assurance from a resettlement agency. When the U.S. … Continue Reading

Personal Electronic Devices Ban Lifted for Some Airlines under New DHS Security Requirements

DHS Secretary John Kelly has released new enhanced security requirements for screening of personal electronic devices and passengers and for explosives for approximately 2,000 daily flights to the U.S. from 280 airports in 105 countries.  Airlines that meet the new requirements will not become subject to an expansion of the PED ban established in March. … Continue Reading

Nonimmigrant Visa Applicants May Have Longer Waits

President Donald Trump has issued an executive order striking the 80-percent/three-week goal for interviewing nonimmigrant visa applicants following submission of applications. Since September 11, 2001, the State Department has given priority to security over quick visa adjudications. For many reasons, including heightened security, between 2001 and 2010, the U.S. share of the global tourism market … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Allows Partial Effect to Trump Travel Ban, Will Review Case in October

It comes as no surprise that the U.S. Supreme Court will hear the travel ban case and will do so in early October. Meanwhile, the Court stayed lower court injunctions allowing President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban to go in effect, but only to the extent that it affects individuals with no bona fide connection … Continue Reading

Trump’s Cuba Policy Reverses Course Set by Obama

Simpler and less expensive travel to Cuba by Americans is apparently short-lived, as more difficult and costly travel to the island nation appears forthcoming. In a recent speech in Miami outlining his policies on Cuban travel and commercial ties with the island country, President Donald Trump said the U.S. is not severing ties with Cuba … Continue Reading

Trump Administration Rescinds DAPA Program

DHS Secretary Kelly has rescinded DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanents).  DAPA was meant to 1) provide undocumented parents of U.S. citizens or Green Card holders with a way to remain in the U.S. with work authorization and 2) expand DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) by encompassing a wider range of … Continue Reading

Travel Ban Case on Fast Track at Supreme Court

Expectations are that the U.S. Supreme Court may decide soon whether to stay the injunctions blocking President Donald Trump’s travel ban. Meanwhile, the President has issued a Memorandum meant to amend and clarify the revised travel ban executive order. The President declared that the 90-day travel ban and the 120-day ban on refugee admissions would … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Blocks Travel Ban

Joining the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals and using President Donald Trump’s tweets to support its decision, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in Hawaii v. Trump has continued to block the revised travel ban. Unlike the Fourth Circuit, the Ninth Circuit did not rule on constitutional grounds. The unanimous three-judge panel ruled on statutory … Continue Reading

President’s Budget Proposes New DOL Filing Fees for Employers

Suspecting that employers seeking to hire foreign workers are not acting in the best interests of American workers, President Trump has requested the authority to establish fees for the adjudication of labor certifications and prevailing wage requests. These fees would be retained by the DOL.  By doing this, the Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC), … Continue Reading

Trump Administration Seeks a Stay of Injunction Blocking Travel Ban

On May 25th, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the lower court’s injunction in International Refugee Assistance Project v. Trump blocking President Trump’s revised travel ban.  The 4th Circuit found that the ban likely violated the First Amendment because it was based in religious animus.  Attorney General Jeff Sessions vowed to appeal that decision … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Hears Challenge to Trump’s Travel Ban Again

President Donald Trump’s own statements and deference to the Executive regarding travel ban Executive Orders are again the focus of oral arguments before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. On May 15, 2017, in State of Hawaii v. Trump, the Ninth Circuit heard arguments for and against the President’s revised travel ban … Continue Reading

Fearing Rejection in U.S., Asylum Seekers Head to Canada

Canada will see a great deal more asylum applications this year as the Trump Administration shows signs of tightening U.S. asylum procedures. Asylum seekers to the U.S. face about a 50-50 chance of rejection if they receive an asylum hearing before an immigration judge, according to a 2016 DHS report to Congress. After President Donald … Continue Reading

DHS Opens Office for Crime Victims of Alleged Illegal Immigrants

Secretary John Kelly of the DHS has announced the establishment of the Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement Office (VOICE). The Office will enable victims or witnesses of crime allegedly perpetrated by illegal aliens to: Report crimes to ICE; Allow victims access to custody information about the purported criminals; and Support victims and witnesses of crimes … Continue Reading

State Department Proposes Supplemental Questions for Visa Applicants

To evaluate terrorism or national security-related ineligibilities of visa applicants, the Department of State has requested emergency review and public comment on a new rule on the collection of additional information from some visa applicants. The proposed rule would “institutionalize” and expand Secretary Rex Tillerson’s “extreme vetting” directive. The new or expanded areas of inquiry … Continue Reading

Spending Bill Would Fund Government E-Verify, Certain Visa Programs through End of Fiscal Year

Back in December, President Barack Obama signed a stop-gap spending bill to keep the government running through April 28, 2017.  Immigration programs that were extended at that time included the Conrad 30 Waiver, the Non-Minister Religious Worker Visa, the EB-5 Regional Center, and E-Verify. After weeks of tension, uncertainty and an interim agreement, it seems … Continue Reading

What Happens IF There is a Government Shutdown?

If Congress cannot pass a funding bill by April 27, 2017, only “essential” government workers will continue to work as of May 1 and immigration processes will be affected. Department of Labor: H Petitions and PERMs DOL workers are not classified as “essential” workers: iCERT visa portal system will be inaccessible; Labor Condition Applications (LCAs) … Continue Reading

Federal Court Blocks Portion of Trump’s Executive Order Denying Federal Grants to Sanctuary Cities

Once again, a U.S. District Court has blocked part of one of President Donald Trump’s Executive Orders – the January 25th EO “Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States.”.  In explaining the purpose of that EO, President Trump stated “[s]anctuary jurisdictions across the United States willfully violate Federal law in an attempt … Continue Reading

DHS STEM OPT Extension Rule Survives Legal Challenge

Finding that although the F-1 visa plaintiffs had standing to sue and that their claim was ripe, they had not alleged sufficient facts to support their claim, Judge Reggie B. Walton of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has ruled, upholding the Department of Home Security’s 2016 STEM OPT Rule Program in … Continue Reading

Expect Redesigned Green Cards from USCIS

After May 1, 2017, be on the lookout for redesigned Green Cards and Employment Authorization Documents (EADs). The USCIS will start issuing newly styled cards on May 1 as part of the “Next Generation Secure Identification Document Project” to make cards highly secure and more tamper-resistant. New Green Cards and EADs will: Display the individual’s … Continue Reading
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