In this video attorney Jacob Sapochnick, brings you the latest updates regarding the rates of immigrant and non-immigrant visa approvals at U.S. Consulates and Embassies worldwide.
The latest Immigrant and Non-immigrant Visa Issuance Reports recently published by the State Department demonstrate that both immigrant and non-immigrant visa approvals are increasing significantly, nearly returning to pre-pandemic visa processing levels.
If you want to know more just keep on watching.
Did you know? Every fiscal year, the Department of State releases the Immigrant and Non-immigrant Visa Issuance Reports which include important statistics and data relating to current immigrant and non-immigrant visa backlogs at U.S. Consulates and Embassies worldwide. The data includes information regarding the number of immigrant and non-immigrant visas being issued at each Consular post worldwide, and a complete breakdown of visa issuance numbers by visa category.
In this video, we bring you a new update from the State Department, based on recent conversations between State Department officials and representatives of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).
We will specifically cover topics such as visa processing for third country nationals wishing to secure interview appointments at Consulates and Embassies worldwide, the fate of E-2 visa renewal applicants who previously applied for loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), the permissible activities of B-1 visa holders while in the United States, issues relating to visa inadmissibility, and nonimmigrant visa denials.
Did You know? We help clients in all 50 states and all countries of the world. If you are interested in discussing your immigration options, we invite you to contact us for a consultation.
If you would like to know more about the recent updates from the State Department, just keep on watching.
The U.S. Department of State recently met with representatives of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) to discuss several immigration topics that have been frequently asked by our viewers. Here we provide a summary of those updates and useful information that may be helpful to you.
Visa Appointments for Third Country Nationals
Applicants of certain nationalities have been experiencing difficulties obtaining visa interviews in their home country. For instance, recent political demonstrations in Iran have made it more and more difficult for applicants to travel to neighboring countries, leading applicants to seek visa appointments elsewhere.
Since the United States does not maintain a diplomatic presence in Iran, applicants can travel and apply at any U.S. Embassy or Consulate that processes their visa type. The U.S. Embassies in Ankara, Yerevan, and Dubai are staffed with Farsi-speaking consular officers who are most familiar with Iranian visa applicants, and therefore are encouraged to apply there. However, visas for Iranian applicants can also be processed at other U.S. Embassies such as Abu Dhabi, Frankfurt, Naples, and Vienna.
For others, obtaining a visa interview in their home country has been nearly impossible leading many to ask whether they can apply elsewhere as a third country national.
In this video, we bring you the latest update from the State Department regarding the status of worldwide consular visa operations as of October 2022, including statistics and what you can expect in the coming months as it relates to visa processing.
If you are waiting for your immigrant visa to be processed at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate overseas, then this video is right for you.
Did You know? The State Department recently announced that it has reached pre-pandemic visa processing.
If you would like to know more about this important topic, just keep on watching.
The State Department recently provided a report on the status of consular visa operations and what the agency has been doing to cut down the waiting periods for immigrant and nonimmigrant visa applicants at Consulates worldwide. We provide the highlights of the report down below.
One of the major ways in which the State Department is improving visa processing times is by hiring more U.S. foreign service workers at Consulates overseas.
As you may be aware, visa backlogs at Consulates overseas piled up during the COVID-19 pandemic after the Department of State announced a worldwide suspension of routine visa services. Due to the restrictions on travel to the United States, as well as several other factors including social distancing protocols, Consulates were unable to schedule applicants for in-person visa interviews. The result was that virtually no visas were issued in the family preference categories during the temporary suspension of visa services, which caused the backlogs to increase significantly.
What is happening with visa operations now?
The State Department is almost back to pre-pandemic processing.
New initiatives like interview waivers are providing relief to Consulates and Embassies, while making available much needed interview slots for other applicants who need appointments.
The State Department estimates that approximately 30 percent of worldwide nonimmigrant visa applicants may be eligible for an interview waiver. This is a very positive development that could very well increase in the months ahead.
Did you know? Online registration for the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (green card lottery) is now open for fiscal year 2024 (DV-2024) and will remain open until Tuesday, November 8, 2022, at 12 noon Eastern Standard Time.In this video attorney Jacob Sapochnick discusses what the diversity visa program is, who is eligible to register for DV-2024, and how you can apply.
Interested in learning whether you qualify? Just keep on watching.
What is the Diversity Visa Program?
The Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (DV Program) administered by the Department of State is an annual green card lottery for individuals who are from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. If your country qualifies for the program, the government provides 50,000 immigrant visas that are up for grabs each year.
Those who register during the online registration period and are selected can immigrate to the United States through consular processing or by applying for adjustment of status with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) if they are residing in the United States. Adjustment of status filings must be completed by September 30 of the fiscal year the lottery pertains to. Visas cannot be carried over to the next fiscal year.
What are the requirements?
You are eligible to participate if you meet the following 3 requirements.
Requirement #1: You must be a native of a country with historically low rates of immigration to the United States to enter.
Click here for the complete list of countries eligible (p. 16 to 20).
If you are not a native of a country with historically low rates of immigration to the United States, there are two other ways you might be able to qualify.
Is your spouse a native of a country with historically low rates of immigration to the United States? If yes, you can claim your spouse’s country of birth – provided that you and your spouse are named on the selected entry, are found eligible and issued diversity visas, and enter the United States at the same time.
Are you a native of a country that does not have historically low rates of immigration to the United States, but in which neither of your parents was born or legally resident at the time of your birth? If yes, you may claim the country of birth of one of your parents if it is a country whose natives are eligible for the DV-2024 program.
Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick shares a new update from the Department of State that was recently provided to the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) Liaison Committee regarding the movement of family sponsored categories on the Visa Bulletin. This information was not previously shared on the “Chats with Charlie,” monthly broadcast with Charlie Oppenheim, the Chief of the Immigrant Visa Control and Reporting Division at the Department of State. Additionally, we share new updates regarding employment-based sponsorship, the current retrogressions in the EB-3 category, as well as Diversity Visa lottery updates following recent developments in the judicial system.
Want to know more? Just keep on watching!
What’s the latest news with respect to immigrant visa numbers?
U.S. immigration laws limit the number of immigrants that can be admitted to the United States each year. The annual numerical immigrant visa limits are based on complex formulas and are subdivided among several preference categories and country “caps.” To illustrate, the annual limit for family-sponsored petitions is 480,000, which includes visas for immediate relatives, while 140,000 visas are allocated for employment-based immigrants. Unused family preference visas from the preceding years are added to employment-based visa numbers to maximize number use.
We have learned that employment-based visa numbers for fiscal year 2022 are expected to be 290,000 – an all-time high. As of today, the pending demand experienced by both the State Department and USCIS in the employment third preference category, for applicants born in India and China, will already exceed the amount of numbers that are available to applicants from those countries throughout fiscal year 2022 in the third preference category. In comparison, in fiscal year 2021, only 9,000 employment-based visas in the third preference category went unused. In fiscal year 2022, there may be close to 85,000 unused employment-based immigrant visas.
Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick informs you of an exciting new court decision handed down by a federal judge from the Northern District of California. This new court decision immediately vacates the 2019 Modernization Rules passed under the Trump administration. As our readers will be aware, the 2019 Rules sought to raise the minimum investment amount for EB-5 investors from $500,000 to $900,000, narrowing the pool of applicants able to apply for a green card. The good news is that this new ruling reinstates the original rules governing the EB-5 visa program and reverts the minimum investment amount back to $500,000.
In addition to this exciting news, Jacob discusses further updates regarding immigration reform bills before Congress, pending litigation against the State Department, and more!
Want to know more? Keep on watching for all the details.
New Court Ruling Reinstates $500,000 Minimum Investment Amount for the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program
We are happy to announce that thanks to a new landmark court decision, known as matter of Behring Regional Center LLC V. Chad Wolf et al. EB-5 Immigrant Investors will now have the opportunity to invest a minimum amount of $500,000 in an EB-5 project within a geographic area, considered a Targeted Employment Area. On June 22nd Federal Judge Corley announced in a court ruling that the 2019 Modernization Rule passed under the Trump administration would be vacated immediately, considering that the former acting DHS Secretary, Kevin McAleenan was not properly appointed to his position under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act when he implemented the 2019 Modernization Rule. As a result, Mc Aleenan did not have the authority to issue the rule, and it has now been declared invalid under the eyes of the law.
Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick provides a breaking news update: President Biden has issued an executive order immediately revoking Presidential Proclamation 10014 issued by the Trump administration.
What does this revocation mean for you and what will happen next?
Keep on watching to learn more.
We are very excited to report that President Biden has lifted the immigration visa ban known as Presidential Proclamation 10014, “Suspension of Entry of Immigrants Who Present a Risk to the United States Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Outbreak.”
Proclamation 10014, issued on April 23, 2020, immediately stopped the issuance of visas at U.S. Consulates and Embassies worldwide for the following individuals:
Spouses and children of green card holders (US citizens were not affected) applying at the consulate
Parents of US citizens applying at the consulate
Brothers and sisters of US citizens applying at the consulate
Sons and daughters (meaning over 21 years old) of US citizens applying at the consulate (children under 21 years old of US citizens were not affected)
Sons and daughters (meaning over 21 years old) of green card holders applying at the consulate
Diversity visa winners
EB1A extraordinary abilities and their family applying at the consulate
PERM EB3, PERM EB2, NIW employment based and their family applying at the consulate
EB4 religious workers immigrants applying at the consulate
Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick discusses the latest immigration legislation, otherwise known as the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021.
So, what is this new bill all about and how can it benefit your family?
Keep on watching to learn more.
We have very exciting news for you today. We are pleased to report that Biden and congressional Democrats have introduced a brand-new piece of legislation known as the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021. While his new bill has not yet become law, it is creating a lot of buzz because it proposes an earned path to citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants who were in the United States on or before January 1, 2021.
The new bill would create a “fast track” green card application process for certain types of immigrants including DACA recipients, those who qualify for Temporary Protected Status (TPS), and farm workers who can demonstrate their work history.
The introduction of this bill is significant, because it appears that Congress is finally gearing up to compromise and pass a comprehensive immigration reform package for the first time in decades.
What are the main highlights of the bill?
The bill makes the following proposals:
Establishes an 8-year path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who arrived in the United States by January 1, 2021
Provides an expedited path to citizenship for farm workers, those eligible for Temporary Protected Status, and undocumented young people who arrived to the U.S. as children with temporary status under DACA
Establishes Lawful Prospective Immigrant Status for 6 years
Replaces the word “alien” with “non-citizen” under immigration law
Raises the per-country visa caps on family and employment-based legal immigration numbers
Repeals the penalty that prohibits undocumented immigrants who leave the country from returning to the U.S. for between 3- and 10-years (repeals the 3 and 10-year bars) to allow for families to stay together without the need to file a waiver of inadmissibility
Expands transitional antidrug task forces in Central America
Increases funding for technology at the southern border
Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick talks about President Biden’s newly signed executive orders on immigration and his administration’s new legislative bill.
Want to know more? Keep on watching for more information.
On January 20, 2021, in his first day in office, President Biden signed a series of executive orders relating to immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick discusses what these executive orders will mean for you and what we may expect to see from the Biden administration in the months ahead with respect to comprehensive immigration reform.
Fact Sheet on Immigration
The Biden administration unveiled a brand new immigration reform bill entitled, the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021, which proposes to overhaul the United States immigration system.
The bill includes a number of new reforms designed to streamline the immigration system and create a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. To become law, the bill must still pass both houses of Congress including the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate.
These reforms are as follows:
Offers an 8-year path to citizenship for millions of people who were living in the United States unlawfully on Jan. 1, 2021. They would be eligible to apply for a green card after 5 years in a temporary status if they pass background checks and pay their taxes and could then apply for citizenship 3 years later.
Allows people with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) protection, a group known as “Dreamers”, who were brought to the United States illegally as children, farmworkers and people with Temporary Protected Status to immediately apply for a green card if they meet specific requirements. They would have a 3-year path to citizenship.
Permits certain immigrants who were deported during the Trump administration and had previously lived in the United States for three years to return to reunite with family or for other humanitarian reasons.
Raises annual per-country limits on family-based immigration and eliminates them for employment visas.
Introduces changes to ease the U.S. citizenship application process.
Increases the diversity visa lottery program visa quota from 55,000 to 80,000.
Exempts spouses and children of green card holders from employment-based immigration quotas, expanding the number of green cards available to employment-based immigrants.
Scraps multi-year bars to re-entry for certain people who lived in the United States illegally and then left.
Clears family-based and employment-based visa backlogs.
Provides work permits to dependents of H-1B visa holders.
Authorizes regional processing centers in Central America to register and process people for refugee resettlement and other legal migration programs.
Authorizes funding for legal counsel for vulnerable populations of migrants, such as children.
Increases the number of immigration judges working in the court system.
Eliminates the 1-year filing deadline for asylum applications.
Changes the word “alien” to “noncitizen” in U.S. immigration laws.
Immigrants with approved family-sponsored petitions (I-130) can join family members on a temporary basis while they wait for their green cards to become available.
New immigration protections for widows and children of second World War veterans.
For more detailed information about the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021 please click here.
Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick discusses the dilemma that Diversity Visa applicants are currently facing. What will happen to those who won the diversity visa lottery but are unable to apply for an immigrant visa because of the new proclamation? We answer your questions here and provide other helpful immigration tips. Stay tuned for more information on this topic.
As many of you know the executive order, “Proclamation Suspending Entry of Aliens Who Present a Risk to the U.S. Labor Market Following the Coronavirus Outbreak,” signed by the President on June 22nd suspends the entry of certain H, J, and L non-immigrants until December 31, 2020 and also extends the previous presidential proclamation signed on April 22nd which barred DV lottery winners from applying for an immigrant visa. Those affected by the April order include diversity visa applicants selected in the DV lottery, who are outside the United States as of the date of the proclamation, and otherwise have no immigrant visa or official travel document allowing them to enter the United States.
Q: What is the impact of this proclamation on DV lottery winners outside the country?
Unfortunately, this proclamation has devastating consequences on DV lottery winners currently residing outside the country. The order could potentially eliminate the possibility of applying for a visa based on diversity visa lottery selection, because DV applicants must be approved for a visa before the September 30, 2020 deadline.
Q. Is there any relief for DV lottery winners?
Potentially. On April 27th a class action lawsuit by multiple plaintiffs was filed President Donald Trump, DHS, Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf, DOS, and DOS Secretary Michael Pompeo, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia challenging the April 22nd Presidential Proclamation arguing that the proclamation interferes with family reunification, violates the INA, the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), and the Fifth Amendment’s Due Process Clause.
The plaintiffs in the lawsuit asked for a preliminary and permanent injunction (a court order) to block the government from implementing or enforcing the Proclamation on those impacted the April 22nd proclamation including FY 2020 diversity visa lottery winners.
Unfortunately, on May 18, 2020, the district court denied the Temporary Restraining order, which means the government can continue to enforce the April 22nd proclamation until further notice.