Thursday, September 26, 2013

Employment-Based Immigrant Visa Quota reached for 2013

American Immigration Lawyers Association

The State Department has confirmed to AILA Liaison that employment annual limits have been reached, as is often the case at the end of a fiscal year. USCIS will continue to process pending adjustment cases, and is able to submit visa number requests for all cases which are being finalized. The State Department will place requests in a “Pending Demand” file. Eligible cases which have been submitted to the State Department that are within the October cut-off dates will be automatically authorized effective October 1, 2013.  No. 13092553

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

House Democrats Crafting Immigration Proposal

The New York Times

House Democratic leaders are working on a broad immigration proposal that they hope will reinvigorate the debate on Capitol Hill and pressure their Republican counterparts to pass legislation that includes a pathway to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants already in the country.

With an immigration overhaul languishing in the Republican-controlled House, taking a back seat to the fiscal fights that promise to occupy most of the fall, Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the Democratic leader, began working with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, as well as with Representative Xavier Becerra of California, the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, to put forth an alternative bill that she said she believes could garner bipartisan support.

Though no final decisions have been made, aides familiar with the strategy said, Democratic leadership hopes to introduce the bill in the next few weeks. Ms. Pelosi met repeatedly — in person and over the phone — with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus over the past two weeks, working closely with Representative Ruben Hinojosa of Texas, the group’s chairman.

To read the full article, please click:  House Democrats Crafting Immigration Proposal

House Republican leader lays out citizenship possibility for immigrants

NBC Latino

The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee on Thursday said immigrant children brought to the country illegally by their parents should be given an earned path to citizenship, and he endorsed the possibility of providing legal status to adult immigrants in the country illegally by using three avenues already in existing law.

Speaking at a GOP Conference Hispanic Heritage month event, Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Va.,  said children of immigrants not legally in the U.S. could find their way to citizenship by serving in the military, through education and working in specific fields.

“For children brought here illegally by parents, I wouldn’t give them a special pathway to citizenship, I would give them an earned pathway to citizenship,” Goodlatte said.

Everyone else could use routes that already exist in law: sponsorship by a family member, including a U.S. citizen spouse, or sponsorship by an employer.

Using those methods won’t result in all of the 11 million people in the country illegally getting citizenship, but “will be a major solution to the problem if you were able to be legally present in the United States, able to work anywhere you wanted, able to own your own business, able to pay your taxes, travel to your home country and back or any other country you wanted to travel to,” said Goodlatte.

To read the full article, please click:  House Republican leader lays out citizenship possibility for immigrants

Billionaire Geek Meets Washington Chic on Immigration


Facebook Inc. (FB) Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg arrived on Capitol Hill in a business suit to meet a U.S. senator. For his next engagement, he emerged from a car in his familiar hooded sweatshirt and Nike sneakers to speak to a roomful of women and men in suits.

“People assume that we’re trying to be cool,” Zuckerberg, 29, told his Washington audience yesterday. “That’s never been my goal. I’m like the least cool person there is.”

Cool or not, a billionaire with 1 billion customers commands undivided attention where money and influence conjoin. That much was clear yesterday when Zuckerberg arrived for two days of private meetings with Republican and Democratic leaders otherwise occupied with a budget showdown threatening to shut down the U.S. government.

“He was very kind and thoughtful,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told reporters after meeting today with Zuckerberg, who had donned a suit again. “He took pictures with all my staff.”

To read the full article, please click:  Billionaire Geek Meets Washington Chic on Immigration

Friday, September 20, 2013

GOP rep expects October immigration reform vote


Republican Congressman Bob Goodlatte, chair of the House Judiciary Committee overseeing immigration, said he expected Congress to pursue reform legislation despite a tight schedule featuring debates over Syria, health care, and the debt limit.

Those and other issues “should not deter us from getting to [immigration] as soon as possible,” Goodlatte said in an appearance on WAMU’s Kojo Nnamdi Show on Tuesday.

Goodlatte said he expected votes soon, perhaps in October, on a series of smaller House bills on border security, internal enforcement,  guest workers, and high-tech visas.

“Those bills are ready to go to the floor of the House and it’s my hope they come to the floor of the House as soon as possible,” he said.

To read the full article, please click:  GOP rep expects October immigration reform vote

Department of State 2015 Diversity Visa Opening October 1, 2013

Online registration for the DV 2015 Program will begin on Tuesday, October 1, 2013 at 12:00 noon, Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (GMT-4), and conclude on Saturday, November 2, 2013 at 12:00 noon, Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (GMT-4).

Click on Diversity Visa Program Instructions webpage for the DV 2015 Instructions and any available translations.

Obama, on Telemundo, rules out freezing deportations of most illegal immigrants

The Washington Post

President Obama on Tuesday ruled out using his executive authority to freeze deportations for most of the 11 million immigrants in the country illegally, saying such a move would violate federal law.

With a comprehensive immigration overhaul stalled on Capitol Hill, advocates have called on the president to move forward without congressional approval to halt the deportations, estimated at more than 1,000 per day.

But Obama said such a move is “not an option.” During an interview at the White House with Telemundo, the Spanish-language television network, Obama defended his decision last summer to defer the deportations of hundreds of thousands of immigrants brought to the country illegally by their parents as children. The legal rationale in that case, he said, was to allow federal agencies to devote more time and resources to high-priority immigration cases such as those involving people with multiple criminal convictions.

To read the full article, please click:  Obama, on Telemundo, rules out freezing deportations of most illegal immigrants

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Obama: Senate immigration bill would pass House if it got a vote

The Washington Times - President Obama said Sunday the immigration reform bill that passed in the Senate would get through the Republican-controlled House if leadership put it up for a vote.
“It would pass, it would pass,” Mr. Obama told ABC's “This Week With George Stephanopoulos.”

House Republicans are walking a fine line in discussing immigration reform, a debate that’s stalled as the party tries to reconcile its concerns about a path to residency status or citizenship for people who came to the United States illegally with its lagging support at the polls among Hispanics — a key and increasing voting bloc.

Mr. Obama said the legislation that passed the Democrat-controlled Senate — providing a path to citizenship for millions of undocumented residents while tightening up border security — “wasn’t perfect, wasn’t my bill, but got the job done.”

To read the full article, please click:  Obama: Senate immigration bill would pass House if it got a vote

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

House Immigration Reform Measure Pushed By Group Of Republicans

Huffington Post - In the five weeks since he declared his support for a comprehensive immigration overhaul, U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster has gotten an earful.

One constituent told the second-term Republican that immigrants carry disease. Another said immigrants would steal jobs away from Americans.

"You cannot stop illegal immigration by rewarding it," another man said at a recent town hall-style meeting in Groveland, a rural community west of Orlando. "Amnesty is a reward."

As Congress returns to work this week after its summer break, Webster faces perhaps an even tougher crowd: fellow Republicans.

Webster is among about two dozen GOP lawmakers who support an eventual path to citizenship for millions of people who are living in the U.S. illegally. These Republicans are facing the daunting challenge of trying to persuade colleagues to follow them.

Most Republicans oppose this approach on citizenship, and there is little political incentive for them to change their minds. Only 24 of 233 Republicans represent districts where more than one-quarter of their constituents are Hispanic.

To read the full article, please click:  House Immigration Reform Measure Pushed By Group Of Republicans

October Visa Bulletin Available

To see the complete U.S. Department of State Visa Bulletin for October 2013, please click:  October 2013 Visa Bulletin

Family-Based Immigrant Visa Priority Dates:

Family-Sponsored All Charge-ability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA- mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
F1 01OCT06 01OCT06 01OCT06 22SEP93 01JUN01
F2A 08SEP13 08SEP13 08SEP13 01SEP13 08SEP13
F2B 01MAR06 01MAR06 01MAR06 08MAR94 08FEB03
F3 22JAN03 22JAN03 22JAN03 22MAY93 01JAN93
F4 08AUG01 08AUG01 08AUG01 15OCT96 22MAR90

Employment-Based Immigrant Visa Priority Dates:

Employment- Based
All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed
15SEP08 15JUN08
3rd 01JUL10 01JUL10 22SEP03 01JUL10 15DEC06
Other Workers 01JUL10 22SEP04 22SEP03 01JUL10 15DEC06
Certain Religious Workers
Regional Centers and Pilot Programs

Monday, September 9, 2013

Congress May Go After Con Artists Who Offer Help In Immigration Cases

Fox News Latino - They spin visions of a new life in the United States, and give assurances that they can deliver the keys to the door that leads to the American Dream.

But too often, the immigrants who turn to these crooked lawyers or con artists who overstate their ability to do immigration work end up with nothing but more problems, and the scammers end up with their money.

Now, Congress is considering expanding protections for immigrants who might fall victim to these scammers.

Bills in both chambers are meant to address a potential spike in legal fraud against immigrants if Congress approves pathways to citizenship under comprehensive immigration reform. Lawmakers fear more immigrants could be approached by unqualified individuals who overcharge and sometimes offer no services.

To read the full article, please click:  Congress May Go After Con Artists Who Offer Help In Immigration Cases

Cap Reached for 2013 U Visas

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has approved the statutory maximum 10,000 petitions for U nonimmigrant status (U visas) for fiscal year 2013. This marks the fourth straight year that USCIS has reached the statutory maximum since it began issuing U visas in 2008.

Each year, 10,000 U visas are available for victims of crime who have suffered substantial mental or physical abuse and are willing to help law enforcement authorities investigate or prosecute those crimes. A U-visa petition requires certification of assistance from law enforcement.

The U-visa program was created by Congress to strengthen the law enforcement community’s ability to investigate and prosecute cases of domestic violence, sexual assault, human trafficking, and other crimes while also offering protection to victims. More than 76,000 victims and their family members have received U visas since the program was implemented.

USCIS will continue to accept U-visa petitions and process them in the order in which they are received. USCIS will resume issuing U visas on October 1, 2013, the first day of fiscal year 2014 and is when visas will be available again.

To read the USCIS release, please click:  USCIS Approves 10,000 U Visas for Fourth Straight Fiscal Year

Thursday, September 5, 2013

White House Official Says Immigration Reform Vote Not Likely Until October

Fox News Latino - The Obama administration’s domestic policy director urged supporters of comprehensive immigration reform on Wednesday to do as the civil rights leaders of the 1960s did – not let opponents defeat them.

Cecilia Muñoz, one of the most senior Latino officials in the White House, linked the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech with today’s fight for immigration reform in an interview with Fox News Latino.

“Today is about celebrating how far we’ve come and recommitting to the work that is ahead,” Muñoz said, adding that just as the civil rights movement of the 1960s addressed jobs, so does immigration reform.

“Immigration reform is just one piece of the agenda,” she said, “we can now quantify what it means for creating jobs, not just for immigrants, but for the rest of us.”

To read the full article, please click:  White House Official Says Immigration Reform Vote Not Likely Until October

Applicants have Constitutional Right to Testify on Merits of Application

The Ninth Circuit Court finds that applicants for asylum and withholding for removal have a constitutional right to testify fully on the merits of their applications, and that the Immigration Judge violated the petitioner's right to due process by limiting his testimony at his merits hearing and then denying relief on adverse credibility grounds.

To read the ruling, please click:  Oshodi v. Holder

USCIS Working to Correct CPR Cards Issued with Incorrect Expiration Dates

Between July 22 and August 8, 2013, USCIS issued approximately 2,300 new conditional permanent resident cards with an incorrect expiration date. Instead of a two year validity period, those cards were issued with a ten-year validity period.

If you were issued an incorrect Permanent Resident Card, please contact your immigration attorney to ensure that you do not have issues in possible future processes, such as seeking U.S. Citizenship through Naturalization.

Immigration Reformers Are Winning August

The Atlantic - Opponents of a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants had a plan to apply grassroots pressure on congressional Republicans in their home districts. Why did it fizzle?

Activists opposed to immigration reform were all set to spend this month putting pressure on lawmakers to kill the legislation. But it hasn't exactly been a show of force.

Last week, the Tea Party Patriots and NumbersUSA, two groups opposed to "amnesty" legislation, heavily publicized a rally in Richmond, Virginia, featuring Steve King, the firebrand Republican congressman who recently claimed most undocumented youth are "physically fit drug mules." But only a few dozen people showed up -- far short of the hundreds organizers had planned for.

To read the full article, please click:  Immigration Reformers Are Winning August

Lawmaker pressed on immigration reform at town-hall meeting

The Hill  - Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.) faced off against more than three dozen immigration reform advocates at a packed town hall meeting at the Augusta County Government Center on Monday evening.

The 11-term congressman fielded questions ranging from government spying programs to background checks on gun purchases and defunding ObamaCare before a packed room of about 200 voters for nearly two hours.

But the focus of the evening for the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee was immigration reform, as Goodlatte defended his step-by-step approach and explained his desire to implement enforcement mandates before creating a pathway to legal status for people in the country unlawfully.

Jossimar Diaz-Castro, a 22-year-old Latino who is in the U.S. legally, pressed Goodlatte on why he wouldn’t take up the Senate-passed immigration bill when it has border security requirements written into it.
To read the full article, please click:  Lawmaker pressed on immigration reform at town-hall meeting