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Green and Spiegel U.S. Blog

Dec 9, 2021

Social Security Isn't Notifying Employers of Wage Discrepancies and It Is up to Employers and Employees to Make Sure It's Right

Employers are required to file wage reports on all U.S. employees, from which Social Security collects the data on which benefits are calculated. Inaccurate wages data may result in diminished benefits or even ineligibility. It is, therefore, in the interests of employees for the data employers provide to the federal government to be accurate and for any errors to be corrected timely. Learn more in this blog.

Dec 3, 2021

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has Changed the Rules for Air Travel to the U.S.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have a significant role in forming, publishing, and enforcing U.S. pandemic policy. Due to the Omicron Variant of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19), the CDC has made some significant changes to the COVID-19 protocols and requirements for air travel. These changes went into effect on Thursday, December 2, 2021 and will continue until the Biden Administration directs otherwise. Learn more in this blog.

Nov 30, 2021

Travel Restrictions for Those Who Have Been in Certain African Countries During the 14 Days Prior to Traveling to the U.S.

The Biden Administration has established 2019 novel coronavirus (“COVID-19”) travel restrictions on foreign nationals who were in: The Republic of Botswana (“Botswana”); the Kingdom of Eswatini (“Swaziland”); the Kingdom of Lesotho (“Lesotho”); the Republic of Malawi (“Malawi”); the Republic of Mozambique (“Mozambique”); the Republic of Namibia (“Namibia”); the Republic of South Africa (“South Africa”); and the Republic of Zimbabwe (“Zimbabwe”). The format and structure of the policy are nearly identical to the travel restrictions that were rescinded on November 8, 2021. Noncitizens who have been in these countries during the fourteen (14) days prior to seeking to travel to the United States are barred from admission, unless eligible for one of the Proclamation’s blanket exemptions or granted an exception pursuant to Sec. 2 (a)(xii). The National Interest Exception (NIE) process, rendered void by the November 8, 2021 travel restriction policy rescission, rides again. Learn more in this blog.

Nov 19, 2021

Alert – USCIS Conducts Third Round of H-1B Cap

On November 19, 2021, USCIS conducted a third round of selections for Registrations submitted for the Fiscal Year 2022 H-1B Cap. This news comes approximately two (2) weeks after H-1B Petitions selected in the second randomized drawing were due, USCIS’ third round of selections confirms that they still have not received sufficient H-1B Petitions to fill their 85,000-visa quota. Learn more in this blog.

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Nov 12, 2021

Update: Major Changes to EAD Policies for H-4, L-2, and E Dependent Classifications

A recent settlement between the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will result in two major changes to the way that USCIS treats L-2, H-4, and E Dependent Spouse work authorization: L-2 and E Dependent Spouse holders will be granted automatic employment authorization incident to their status. H-4 holders will be granted automatic renewals of employment authorization for applicants that already have valid H-4 status (but an expired EAD card). Learn more in this blog.

Nov 10, 2021

Major Changes to EAD Policies for H-4 and L-2 Classifications

A recent settlement between the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will result in two major changes to the way that USCIS treats L-2 and H-4 work authorization. Learn more in this blog.

Nov 8, 2021

President Biden Receives Proposals for ‘Public Charge’ Rule

As of late October 2021, the Biden administration, unveiled plans to revamp the definition of the infamous public charge rule. DHS has received nearly 200 comments prior to its October 22 deadline for public feedback on the administration’s plan to replace the rule announced under the Trump administration.

Nov 5, 2021

Green and Spiegel, U.S. Recognized in 2022 Edition of U.S. News - Best Lawyers' "Best Law Firms"

Best Lawyers has named Green and Spiegel, LLC as one of The Best Law Firms in America. This is the firm’s first time receiving this award.

Oct 26, 2021

The Executive Order Has Been Published and, for the Vaccinated, the Travel Restrictions Will Be Revoked as of November 8, 2021

The Biden Administration has published a new COVID-19 air travel policy, revoking the travel restrictions for vaccinated foreign nationals. Unvaccinated foreign nationals may still be able to enter the United States but will need to follow specific procedures to do so. Unlike prior COVID-19 executive orders, the new policy applies to all foreign nationals, not only those who have been in specific countries. Learn more.

Oct 15, 2021

For the Vaccinated, Travel Restrictions Will End on November 8th

The Biden Administration has designated November 8, 2021, as the official end of the COVID-19 Travel Restrictions for fully vaccinated foreign nationals. Noncitizens will be able to travel to the U.S. via land, sea, and air from November 8th onward. Follow-up information will be necessary as the specific requirements for testing and procedures for those who are not vaccinated is published. Learn more in this blog.

Oct 5, 2021

Diversity Lottery Registration to Open October 6, 2021

The Department of State announced on their website that the online registration for the 2023 Diversity Visa Program is set to open on Wednesday October 6, 2021 at 12:00 noon, (EDT), and will close on Tuesday November 9, 2021 at 12:00. The Department has also published its website the DV-2023 Program Instructions. Learn more in this blog.

Oct 1, 2021

Croatia Becomes Newest Nation to Participate in Visa Waiver Program

Secretary of Homeland Security Mayorkas, with Secretary of State Antony Blinken released a statement on Tuesday announcing Croatia as the newest participant in the Visa Waiver Program. Learn more in this blog.

Sep 29, 2021

COVID-19 Delays at USCIS Extend Conditional Residency to 24 Months for Properly Filed Forms I-751 and I-829

In a statement released September 3, 2021, USCIS stated that it would extend the validity period for extensions of status for certain petitions to remove conditions of residency. Specifically, the agency is extending the time that receipt notices of properly filed Form I-751 (Petitions to Remove Conditions on Residence) or Form I-829 (Petition by Investor to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status) can be used to show evidence of status while their cases remain pending with USCIS.

Sep 21, 2021

By Mid-November, Those Who Have Been Fully Vaccinated Will Likely Be Free to Travel to the U.S. Without A COVID-19 Waiver

The Biden Administration is preparing to set aside the COVID-19 Travel Restrictions for fully vaccinated foreign nationals. By mid-November, many noncitizens may be able to travel to the U.S. with vaccination proof and a negative COVID-19 test. Foreign travelers who are not fully vaccinated will likely remain subject to Travel Restrictions and may find it more difficult to get COVID-19 waivers. Learn more.

Sep 17, 2021

Update on the H-1B Cap Lottery System

On Wednesday, a California federal judge struck down a controversial Trump-era rule which aimed to change the H1-B lottery system from the current random selection process to one based upon prioritizing those with higher salaries. U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White joined a growing list of federal judges who have found that former Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf was not lawfully appointed as Acting Secretary, and therefore lacked any authority to implement the new January 2021 rule. Learn more in this blog.

Sep 17, 2021

DOS Announces Visa Interviews may be Waived for Certain F, M and J Visa Applicants

Understanding the important contributions foreign nationals make to college and university campuses, The Department of State (DOS) announced on September 14th, 2021 that Consular officers are authorized to expand the categories of F, M, and “academic J visa applicants” eligible to be waived from the in-person interview with certain exceptions. Learn more in this blog.

Aug 23, 2021

Newly Proposed Startup Visa Could Provide Path to Citizenship for Startup Founders

While the push for complete immigration reform is slow-going in Congress, with some bipartisan effort, there may be hope for the next letter in the alphabet to make its way into U.S. Immigration Law: the W-1 visa. Learn more in this blog.

Aug 20, 2021

Jonathan Grode Honored in the 28th Edition of Best Lawyers for Professional Excellence in Immigration

Congratulations to Jonathan Grode, Green and Spiegel’s U.S. Practice Director and Managing Partner, who has been recognized once again by his peers as a top talent in Immigration Law. He will be featured in The Best Lawyers in America© 2022 Edition. This is Jonathan’s second time receiving this award.

Aug 2, 2021

USCIS Extends Flexibilities to F-1 Students Filing Form I-765 for OPT

For applicants who timely filed Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization for OPT and STEM OPT and whose applications were later rejected, USCIS will accept a refiled Form I-765 and treat it as if filed on the original filing date as long as the application was originally filed timely and received by USCIS on or after October 1, 2020, through October 31, 2021 and the application was subsequently rejected. Learn more.

Aug 2, 2021

Update on H-1B Cap Section for FY 2022

US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on July 29, 2021 that it conducted a second round of H-1B registration selections for the Fiscal Year 2022 H-1B Cap. Registrations selected through this lottery will be eligible for H-1B petitions to be filed on their behalf. USCIS also announced that the H-1B petition filing window for these selections is open from August 2, 2021 through November 3, 2021. Learn more.