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Author: admin

Corey Lee Law - NYC Immigration Attorney > Articles posted by admin (Page 6)

VISA FRAUD LEADER GETS A YEAR IN JAIL

March 25, 2019The head of an illegal visa scheme has finally been sentenced. Anjaneyulu Katam, who was accused by the US Department of Justice of manipulating the H-1B visa program to help Indian nationals illegally enter the US, was sentenced to a year in jail and ordered to forfeit $1.1 million in assets.The government alleged that Katam ran a “IT Staffing Company” that had filed falsified visa applications in exchanged for payment and forced applicants to pay their own visa fees. The H-1B visa, which is intended to fill shortages of skilled laborers, has been under criticism for the ability...

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NEW RULES MAY BAR EMPLOYERS FROM USING FOREIGN WORKERS

March 22, 2019Last month, the Department of Labor released a memo outlining new interpretations to regulations around hiring foreign workers, such as those workers on the H-1B visa. In short, the memo states that those companies that do not comply fully with requests for evidence may be barred from using any foreign workers at all.Much of the substance of the memo deals specifically with compliance to new electronic document requests. Namely, that much of the visa process is now online. For some companies or workers, using an electronic only process will be very difficult to navigate. For others, it might...

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H-1B IN CHAOS? GOVERNMENT RULE CHANGES FRUSTRATE APPLICANTS

March 18, 2019As a result of many visa processing changes announced by the USCIS earlier this week, many applicants and employers are left scrambling to ensure that everything is revised in time for the April 1st start date. Notably, changes made to the processing of premium applications have caused a large amount of chaos for many who are filing applications, as the changes have disrupted timelines, application information, and even billing and fee cycles. Premium processing of applications, which is notably more expensive, traditionally guarantees a response within 15 days. However, the USCIS announced that they would not even begin...

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2020 H-1B SEASON ANNOUNCED

March 15, 2019The USCIS has announced the starting dates for H-1B applications for fiscal year 2020. Applications will be accepted starting on April 1, 2019 and will be subject to any 2020 caps on the total number of visas approved. The USCIS also announced a number of changes, including changes to the visa selection process, changes to the processing of premium visa requests, and even a new H-1B employer data hub for the 2020 visa season.Immigration services in the US are still actively trying to adapt to changes mandated by the Trump Administration, which is pushing for companies to hire...

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VISA LAWSUIT AGAINST APPLE DISMISSED

March 11, 2019 A lawsuit filed against Apple and Infosys has been dismissed by US courts. The lawsuit alleged that Apple illegally conspired to abuse the US visa system to replace US workers with cheaper, outsourced labor from India. It was claimed that Apple was illegally attempting to get workers into the US on the cheaper B-1 Visa instead of the more expensive H-1B visas.The lawsuit, filed by a whistleblower on the scheme and an independent contractor, was ultimately dismissed after the courts found that Apple’s use of the visa system was appropriate.Companies using foreign workers should remain cautious...

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SENATORS PUSHING FOR MORE VISAS

March 8, 2019 A bipartisan group of senators, lead by Sen. Angus King and Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, are attempting to raise the cap for certain work visas. Recent changes by the Trump Administration has caused fewer H-1B and other work visas to be approved, and many companies, particularly IT companies, are feeling the impact of this. With domestic unemployment hitting historic lows, the need for skilled foreign workers is growing. Maine in particular needs skilled workers to help with their tourism-based economy, hence the sense of urgency from the Senators to raise the cap.This comes at a time...

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ARE H-1B WORKERS BEING EXPLOITED?

March 4, 2019 A recent piece by Bloomberg law suggests that H-1B workers entering the US, particularly in the IT sector, are potentially being exploited by consulting firms. The piece, founded mostly on anonymous sources to protect workers from retaliation, claims that some H-1B immigrants are being forced to work 80 hours (twice the standard work week) for no additional overtime pay, and are also functionally unable to take sick days or vacation days.This comes at a time when IT companies are facing a major crunch, as several lawsuits have recently been filed claiming that the current US administration is...

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IT COMPANIES SUE US GOVERNMENT OVER H-1B APPROVALS

February 28, 2019 Dozens of lawsuits have been filed in recent days by a group of IT companies who are alleging that the US government coordinated to limit the number of H-1B visas approved for companies known for IT outsourcing.ITServe Alliance, a group of 1,100 IT outsourcers, including all of the companies in the lawsuits, are claiming that new regulations around H-1B visas are meant to eliminate the industry. H-1B visas allow for skilled foreign workers to gain entry and employment in the United States, and are used to fill critical skill shortages, particularly in the IT sector.Evidence of discrimination...

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IT COMPANIES HIT HARD BY IMMIGRATION CHANGES

February 25, 2019 Early in his Presidency, President Trump made a concerted effort through legislation and executive orders to encourage companies to hire Americans and discourage the use of foreign labor. One year out, we can see that these policy changes have hit IT companies the hardest.The USCIS announced the denial rates for many companies attempting to hire foreign workers through H-1B applications, and the results were disappointing to many new disruptors in the IT field. While major companies like Amazon and Microsoft only had 1% denial rates, the denial rates for others like Capgemini and Cognizant were 80% and...

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ATTENTION: H-2B CAP REACHED FOR THE YEAR, LOTTERY CONDUCTED

February 22, 2019 The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that they have reached the cap on H-2B visas for fiscal year 2019. This means that all new H-2B visa requests that request a start date before Oct 1, 2019 will be automatically rejected.The final date for accepted visa requests will be Feb. 19, 2019. Because the number of petitions exceeded the number of allowable visas, this triggered the selection system known as the “lottery” to determine who would receive a H-2B visa. The lottery was conducted on Feb 21st, with the assignments being released on Feb 22nd.IMPORTANT:...

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