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Showing posts from March, 2018

ALERT: Foreign Students on OPT!

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Thousands of foreign students received emails from DHS in the last couple days, providing instructions to create their own new SEVIS account.  The emails typically looked like this:

THIS IS NOT A SCAM.
The burden is now on the OPT student to provide details of their employment training to the U.S. Department if Homeland Security. This is done through a new, individual online portal for students  who have been approved for OPT or those ICE calls "prospective" OPT trainees (i.e. applied for OPT but not yet approved).   The link is in the email, and is valid for 31 days, after which one can contact their DSO for a new link.  It's probably a good idea not to wait and risk bureaucratic confusion.

Having said this, compliance with the new requirement was apparently not a problem, at least today.  It seems that shortly after DHS emails reached OPT students, the SEVIS Portal was overcome and experienced an outage.




Here's the official SEVIS Portal Announcement.

“On March 23…

BREAKING: No Premium Processing for New H1B’s This Year

https://www.uscis.gov/news/alerts/uscis-will-temporarily-suspend-premium-processing-fiscal-year-2019-h-1b-cap-petitions

“Starting April 2, 2018, USCIS will begin accepting H-1B petitions subject to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 cap. We will temporarily suspend premium processing for all FY 2019 cap-subject petitions, including petitions seeking an exemption for individuals with a U.S. master’s degree or higher. This suspension is expected to last until Sept. 10, 2018. During this time, we will continue to accept premium processing requests for H-1B petitions that are not subject to the FY 2019 cap. We will notify the public before resuming premium processing for cap-subject H-1B petitions or making any other premium processing updates.

During this temporary suspension, we will reject any Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service, filed with an FY 2019 cap-subject H-1B petition. If a petitioner submits one combined check for the fees for Form I-907 and Form I-129, Petition for a Non…

Change Status or Consular Process?

“I am currently in the US on B1/B2 visa and got accepted in a program and got my i20 form. what do you suggest apply for change of status or go back to my home country and apply there?”

ANSWER:

Try to change status, but you might be required to consular process anyway.

Sometimes you receive an I-797 approval notice for a visa (any visa), but without the change of status. This means you’re required to have it stamped before you can be on that status. Obviously that can only be done by returning to your country and making a visa appointment (i.e. consular processing). These situations typically happen when the USCIS agrees with the underlying eligibility for your visa (i.e. the school admission is in order), but they are unsure of your intent to immigrate and want you to go through an interview appointment to scrutinize this. So to your question of whether you should try for COS, the answer given the above explanation is that you have nothing to lose by trying for a COS. The worst the…
There’s a new addition to the vocabulary of corporatese: the "tribe."

I hope it doesn’t get cliché like "deep dive," "reach out," and my personal pet peeve, "deliverables." That’s because I really subscribe to the concept "tribe" as a clue to my lifelong desire for a sense of belonging, how to analyze a potential jury, or o whom I direct blog writing, to name just a few.

One of the reasons I like this concept is be because as a solo attorney, it is important to distinguish with practicing in my own law firm, and being alone. I’m very much part of a tribe, they don’t simply partake in weekly partner meetings or from picnics. But being a tribe as a solo attorney is just as if not more critical. I very much believe in and mutual sense of purpose in what we do, whether in work play or family. In the end, it’s what makes you get up and want to go to work in the morning and do a good job. Humans need purpose, I tried with common interests, …