Garland Selected as U.S. Attorney General

January 20, 2021 § Leave a comment

January 6, 2021: Incoming president Joseph Biden has selected Merrick Garland, Chief Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit and former Supreme Court nominee, as U.S. attorney general.

Read more: https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/532901-biden-to-name-merrick-garland-for-attorney-general?utm_source=AILA+Mailing&utm_campaign=ed75c3b29f-AILA8-1-6-2021&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_3c0e619096-ed75c3b29f-290737573

USCIS Modifies H-1B Selection Process

January 20, 2021 § Leave a comment

January 8, 2021: U.S. Citzenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on Thursday announced that it will modify the selection process for H-1B visa, giving priority to salary and skills, instead of the current lottery procedures. The final rule to be published in the federal register on January 8, 2021. The final rule will be effective 60 days after its publication in the Federal Register. The next H-1B visa filing season is slated to start on April 1. Emerging reports underline that the incoming presidential administration of Joe Biden could place it on hold and also repeal it under the Congressional Review Act.

This new selection process will have a devastating effect on foreign students as most qualifying foreign students are sponsored for Level 1, H-1B positions. The USCIS claims that the changes promulgated in the Final Rule will not affect foreign students because they will have time during their OPT status to gain experience taking them to a higher wage level. However, only STEM students may qualify for three years of OPT. All other foreign students may qualify for only one year of OPT. Even students with some experience and master’s degrees, who could qualify for Level 2 positions are not likely to stand a chance. The changes seem to be drafted to have a maximum effect on level 2 positions as more than 50% of the H-1B petitions are filed for this level of workers.

Read more: https://www.ndtv.com/indians-abroad/us-to-amend-h-1b-visa-selection-process-to-give-priority-to-wages-skill-level-2349330

Judge Blocks Dramatic Overhaul of U.S. Asylum System

January 20, 2021 § Leave a comment

January 11, 2021: A federal district court in California preliminarily enjoined the government from implementing, enforcing, or applying the December 11, 2020, final rule, Procedures for Asylum and Withholding of Removal; Credible Fear and Reasonable Fear Review, or any related policies or procedures, including the policy memo entitled Guidance Regarding New Regulations Governing Procedures for Asylum and Withholding of Removal and Credible Fear Reviews. The rule was set to take effect today, January 11, 2021.

Read more: https://www.reuters.com/article/usa-immigration-asylum/judge-blocks-dramatic-overhaul-of-u-s-asylum-system-from-taking-effect-idUSKBN29E052?utm_source=AILA+Mailing&utm_campaign=d36f9309e6-AILA8-1-11-2021&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_3c0e619096-d36f9309e6-290737573

DHS Releases Fiscal Year 2020 Enforcement Lifecycle Report

January 20, 2021 § Leave a comment

January 12, 2021: The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has released its Fiscal Year 2020 Enforcement Lifecycle Report which indicates that we still have a border security crisis, a crisis that is likely to get much worse if President-elect Joe Biden keeps his campaign promise to rescind President Donald Trump’s border security measures during the first 100 days of the new administration. At a recent press conference, Biden walked back some of his promises and said that changing Trump’s policies immediately is the last thing we need because it could lead to having 2 million asylum seekers at our border. He thinks he needs probably six months to rebuild the system for processing migrants and to secure funding for more immigration judges. Though, many experts voice concern that six months still won’t suffice.

Read more: https://thehill.com/opinion/immigration/533741-biden-walking-back-immigration-promises-for-a-reason

VP-Elect Harris Teases Sweeping Immigration Reform Bill

January 20, 2021 § Leave a comment

January 12, 2021: The incoming administration will focus on decreasing wait times to obtain citizenship, granting automatic green cards to protected undocumented immigrants and adding immigration judges to decrease backlogs on court hearings, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris said on Tuesday.  Speaking with Univision’s Ilia Calderón, Harris teased a sweeping immigration reform bill that her and President-elect Joe Biden’s administration plans to introduce.

Read more: https://www.politico.com/news/2021/01/12/kamala-harris-immigration-green-cards-daca-citizenship-458455

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