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USCIS Changes Direct Filing Addresses for Form I-129 Petitions

The U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services ( USCIS) announced on October 12, 2017, a change in the direct filing addresses for certain petitioners of Form I-129, Petitioner for a Nonimmigrant Worker. These changes are important for all Petitioners and immigration lawyers to note as beginning November 1, 2017, USCIS will reject any Form I-129s filed at the wrong service center.

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Republican U.S. Senator: Immigration “Deal to Be Had”

I had a brief conversation with U.S. Senator Daniel Sullivan of Alaska earlier today. I asked the first term Republican about changes in U.S. immigration law and he said “there is a deal do be had on DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals)” but it had to come from Congress and “we have to secure the border at the same time.”

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Temporary Protected Status Changes for Sudan & South Sudan

On September 18, 2017, Elaine Duke, acting Secretary of Homeland Security enacted the following changes for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Sudan and South Sudan. Beginning November 2, 2018, TPS for Sudanese nationals will be terminated.

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Premium Processing Resumes for All H-1B Petitions

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on October 3, 2017 that premium processing for all H-1B petitions has resumed. Premium processing is the expedited processing of an application. USCIS guarantees a processing time of fifteen (15) calendar days.

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DHS Expansion of Social Media Policy Beginning October 18th!

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has expanded its social media policy and as of October 18, 2018 will be collecting “social media handles, aliases, associated identifiable information, and search results” for all immigrants. It is currently unclear as to how DHS will obtain the “search results.”

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New 90-Day Rule Regarding Misrepresentation

The U.S. Department of State (“DOS”) updated the Field Adjudicators Manual (“FAM”) on September 1, 2017 to provide guidance to U.S. consular officers in regards to the term “misrepresentation” and foreign nationals in the U.S. “who conduct themselves in a manner inconsistent with representations they made to consular officers concerning their intentions at the time of visa application or to DHS when applying for admission or for an immigration benefit.”

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Premium Processing to Resume for FY 2018 Cap H-1B Petitions

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced on September 18, 2017 that they have resumed premium processing for all H-1B petitions subject to the cap filed this past April in the lottery.

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Trump “Winding Down” DACA Program

Today, September 5, 2017 Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the Trump Administration is rescinding the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) program and ordered an “orderly, lawful, wind down” of DACA. Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Elaine Duke, has already issued a memorandum rescinding the June off 2012 memorandum that created DACA and ordered a phase out of the program over the next six (6) months.

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USCIS Now Conducting Interviews for Employment-Based Green Cards

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced beginning, October 1 2017, adjustment of status applications based on employment will be scheduled for in-person interviews. Previously, applicants applying for an employment-based immigrant visa did not require an in-person interview with USCIS officers in order for their application for permanent residency to be adjudicated.

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Dept. of State Halts Issuing Nonimmigrant Visas to Russia.

The U.S. State Department has temporarily stopped issuing nonimmigrant visas (NIV) to Russians in response to Moscow’s decision to impose a personnel cap on the U.S. Mission as of August 23, 2017. Beginning 9/1/2017, NIV interviews will only be conducted at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.

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