The Biden-Harris Administration has taken steps to enhance the ability of U.S. STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) businesses to hire qualified foreign students and graduates as exchange visitors. Interested STEM businesses could become Host Organizations for J-1 Visa Exchange Visitors.

In a statement released by the White House, STEM talent is identified as “critical

Starting on Jan. 5, 2023, COVID-19 travel restrictions are back for those travelling to the United States from China, Hong Kong, or Macau. Individuals will have to show evidence of a negative COVID-19 test or of recovery from COVID-19.

Restrictions will apply to everyone over the age of 2 boarding a flight from China, Hong

Portugal is designated an E-1/E-2 treaty country in the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023 (H.R. 7776/NDAA) passed by Congress on December 15, 2022. President Joe Biden is expected to sign the bill, providing Portuguese nationals E-1 and E-2 visa eligibility.  

E-1 and E-2 visas are for treaty traders

On January 4, 2023, the U.S. Embassy in Havana will resume immigrant visa processing for immediate relatives, family preference applicants, diversity visa applicants and visas for K fiancées.

Until then, the U.S. Embassy Georgetown in Guyana will continue to process immigrant visa applications for Cubans with appointments scheduled through the end of December 2022.

Consular

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will no longer issue a paper Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, to individuals arriving to the United States at a land border. Now, the information that was on the I-94 is on the CBP’s I-94 website and available on the CBP One Mobile application.

It has taken some time

Now, Mexicans applying for TN status are eligible for four-year visas by paying a larger fee. This option allows Mexicans to avoid the hassles associated with having a three-year TN visa approval but only a one-year visa.

Since 1993, Canadians and Mexicans have been able to enter the United States to work in certain fields

For employers that hire foreign nationals, whether as local hires already in the country or as transferees from foreign affiliates, immigration processing delays have been exacerbated during the COVID-19 pandemic. Companies in the manufacturing sector have had to deal with unexpected unpredictability in project planning, as well as increased costs. Please see our full publication

The Diversity Visa (DV) Lottery is open for FY 2024. Applications may be filed online until 12:00 p.m. ET on November 8, 2022. 

The DV Lottery program makes 50,000 immigrant visas (“green cards”) available every year to applicants from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. Eligible individuals must meet certain requirements

As of October 1, 2022, Canada is ending all travel, testing, and border requirements and restrictions related to COVID-19. This includes vaccination, mandatory use of ArriveCAN, and any testing or quarantine and isolation requirements for those entering Canada by land, sea, or air. Even masking on board is no longer required, although still recommended.

Since

USCIS is resuming the Cuban Family Reunification Parole (CFRP) Program beginning with already pending CFRP applications. This program started in 2007 and has been on hold for some time. It allows beneficiaries of approved Forms I-130, Petitions for Alien Relative, to come to the United States on parole while waiting for an available visa number.