USCIS Announces a Revised Naturalization Civics Test

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced today plans to implement a revised version of the naturalization civics test. The agency first announced plans to revise the civics test in July 2019. USCIS revised the civics test as part of a decennial…

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USCIS Increases Application Fees Starting October 2, 2020

The Department of Homeland Security announced on Friday, July 31 that US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will increase its fees by an average of 20% starting on October 2, 2020. USCIS cites the fact that it is 97% fee funded and…

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UPDATE on Potential USCIS Layoffs

USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) was originally planning to furlough 13,000 of its workers if no Congressional action was taken before August 3, but has now pushed the start of the furlough to August 31. Although USCIS had financial troubles prior…

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National Interest Exceptions to Immigration Bans Are Possible for Some Visa Applicants

Presidential Proclamations 10014 and 10052 suspended the entry of certain immigrants and nonimmigrants until December 31, 2020. However, there are certain exceptions for individuals whose travel to the United States would be in the national interest that have been updated by the…

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Potential National Interest Exemptions Available for Some Travelers from Europe

The Department of State (DOS) is clarifying some aspects on what kind of individuals may qualify for the national interest exemptions under Presidential Proclamations 9993 (Schengen Area) and 9996 (United Kingdom and Ireland). On July 16, 2020, a notice was issued by…

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Trump administration rescinds foreign students rule

In response to several lawsuits, the Trump administration backs down from its proposed policy to invalidate student visas for those attending online only courses dues to the COVID-19 pandemic. Here is the article about this recent development written by John…

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International Students Will Lose Their Visas if Their Schools Only Offer Online Classes Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

On July 6, 2020, the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) issued modifications to the temporary exemptions put in place due to COVID-19. Prior to COVID-19, students that held F-1 and M-1 nonimmigrant visas were only allowed to take one…

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Trump’s Proclamation Suspends H-1B, H-2B, J-1, and L-1 Visas for Applicants Outside the U.S.

The most recent executive order which attempts to reduce immigration to the U.S. was issued late this afternoon, June 22, 2020.  With some exemptions, it suspends the “entry into the United States of any alien seeking entry pursuant to” an…

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The Troubling Trend of Long Delays in EB-5 Immigant Investor Application Process

Nearly all immigration applications before the USCIS are experiencing slow processing times.  EB-5 immigrant investor petitions are no different. In fact, since May of this year, the estimated processing time of EB-5  I-526 petitions has spiked to its highest yet:…

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Visa backlog grows in August, causing longer delays for many green card applicants

The Department of State has posted the visa bulletin for August 2019. Almost all employment based (EB) green card categories are now experiencing backlogs which are expected to continue through September. In October, a new round of immigrant visas become…

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