May 4th, 2022
- VIDEO: Biden Administration Announces Immigration Policies to Attract STEM Talent
- Major Pro Bono Asylum Victory for GYH
- H-1B Work Site Requirements
- Advance Copy: USCIS Temporary Final Rule Increasing Automatic Extension Period of EADs
- Implementation of ESTA requirement for Visa Waiver Program travelers
- Asylum Interview Interpreter Requirement Modification Due to COVID
- Secretary Mayorkas Designates Cameroon for Temporary Protected Status
View newsletter as published: HERE
Biden Administration Announces Immigration Policies to Attract STEM Talent
The Biden administration announced in January its intentions to clear immigration pathways for foreign nationals in STEM fields, acknowledging that these fields are crucial to our country’s development, security, and health. GYH intern, Angelis Pajares, explains the measures DHS and DOS are taking to make U.S. immigration more accessible and appealing to foreign nationals in STEM fields.
Major Pro Bono Asylum Victory for GYH
Our story opens on a sprawling trailer jail in Southern Texas in January 2019. Partner Meg Hobbins travelled to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention center in Dilley to spend a week volunteering with Proyecto Dilley. Meg was with a group of volunteer attorneys providing legal guidance to the migrant mothers, most of whom were fleeing extreme violence in Central America and seeking asylum protection in the United States.
H-1B Work Site Requirements
All H-1B petitions must be accompanied by a Labor Condition Application (LCA) certified by the Department of Labor. USCIS requires the LCA to list all worksites where the H-1B beneficiary will be performing work. The prevailing wage, or the minimum rate at which the employer is required to pay the employee, is determined in part by the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) for the relevant job category of the employee. As such, a change in worksite may materially affect an H-1B petition, including the wage rate required to be paid to the employee.
If the beneficiary’s worksite changes at any time throughout the duration of their H-1B status (e.g. relocation of petitioner’s office or beneficiary’s home office, additional worksites, etc.), it is important to notify your attorney immediately so they can identify the steps required to comply with immigration regulations, such as LCA posting requirements and/or filing of an H-1B amendment.
Advance Copy: USCIS Temporary Final Rule Increasing Automatic Extension Period of EADs
The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) released an advanced copy of a USCIS temporary final rule increasing the automatic extenstion period for employment verification documents (EADs). For certain renewal applicants who have filed Form I-765 he autmatic extension period will be increased from up to 180 days to up to 540 days from the expiration date stated on their EADs.
This increase will be available to eligible renewal applicants with pending Forms I-765 as of May 4, 2022, including those applicants whose employment authorization may have lapsed following the initial 180-day extension period. It will also include any eligible applicant who files a renewal Form I-765 during the 540-day period beginning on or after May 4, 2022, and ending October 26, 2023.
The temporary final rule will be published in the Federal Register on May 4, 2022.
Implementation of ESTA requirement for Visa Waiver Program travelers
On April 1, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security announced a new rule in the Federal Register amending its regulations regarding Visa Waiver Program travelers. Effective May 2, 2022, noncitizens from VWP countries must receive a travel authorization from Customs and Border Protection (CBP) via the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to applying for admission at U.S. land ports of entry.
Asylum Interview Interpreter Requirement Modification Due to COVID
On March 16, 2022, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the Department of Homeland Security announced in the Federal Register an extension of the temporary final rule. The temporary final rule is a modification that applies to affirmative asylum interviews in which the applicant is not able to complete the interview in English. In the past, asylum applicants were allowed to have an interpreter accompany them to the interview for translation purposes; they are now required to use USCIS telephonic contract interpreters.
Secretary Mayorkas Designates Cameroon for Temporary Protected Status
On April 15th, DHS announced that Cameroonian individuals already residing in the US as of April 14th are eligible for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). This decision arose from the recent rise in attacks by the Islamist military group Boko Haram, along with the longstanding internal conflict between the country’s English-speaking minority and French-speaking majority. The civil war in Cameroon that first erupted in 2016 and significantly intensified last year, has triggered a “humanitarian crisis” of economic and food insecurity. The ongoing violence has led to “several hundred thousand displaced Cameroonians without access to schools, hospitals, and other critical services."