Question and Answers

Month: September 2010 (Page 2 of 2)

Senate Measure Gives Rights to Widows of Citizens : Immigration Law Answers Blog

In a long-overdue move, the Senate last week approved a law that would stop the so-called “widows penalty” in immigration situations. Until now, if an immigrant had an application for permanent residency on file based on marriage to a U.S. citizen, and the citizen died within the first two years of the marriage, the application was annulled and the immigrant was deported. This seems especially harsh treatment to an immigrant who has just lost his or her newlywed spouse to a tragic death. To have to deal not only with the personal loss but also with the trauma of having to leave the country is just too great a burden. The new law, expected to be approved by President Obama, would allow the immigrant to submit his or her own petition for residency within two years of the spouse’s death. The immigrant must not have remarried and must still prove that the marriage was entered into in good-faith.

The law would be retroactive, and would apply to any immigrant whose citizen spouse died less than two years after the marriage, regardless of the date. The immigrant would have two years from the law’s enactment to petition for residency.

Update on H-1B FY 2010 : Immigration Law Answers Blog

H-1B visas are a relatively swift path to employment for foreigners with bachelor’s degrees and U.S. employers to sponsor them. Each year, the U.S. government makes 65,000 H-1B visas available to qualified individuals on a first-come basis. The cap has been reached every year for the last several years, and for fiscal year 2008, it was reached on the first day of filing. As of July 10, 2009, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) had received 44,900 H-1B cap-subject petitions that have been counted towards the 65,000 H-1B cap. USCIS continues to accept cap-subject petitions.  

If you would like more information regarding the H-1B visa cap, please call Kraft & Associates at 214-999-9999.

Calling Immigration System 'Broken,' Obama Pushes Bill : Immigration Law Answers Blog

Posted on July 1, 2010 by Robert A. Kraft

President Obama gave a speech today calling the current immigration system “broken” and urging passage of comprehensive immigration reform. For an excellent summary of the speech, and of the issues surrounding the immigration debate, please read the article in the New York Times. 

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More Texas County Sheriff's Offices Partner With ICE to Identify and Remove Criminal Aliens : Immigration Law Answers Blog

Sheriff’s offices in the South Texas counties of Hidalgo, Starr, Brooks, Jim Wells, and Kenedy have begun accessing U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) fingerprint databases to determine if arrested individuals are immigration offenders who may face removal.   Once each individual’s criminal process is completed, he or she will be taken into ICE custody. Secure Communities was launched in October 2008, and is currently in place in San Diego, California; Mesa, Arizona; Fairfax, Virginia; and Dallas, San Antonio, and Huntsville, Texas. All U.S. counties are expected to implement the system by 2012.   ICE asserts that the Secure Communities initiative will allow law enforcement officials to streamline a “time-consuming and spotty system of Border Patrol interviews in jails.”  

More information may be found by visiting: www.ice.gov.

Permanent Resident Card Production Delays : Immigration Law Answers Blog

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that permanent resident card applicants may experience up to an eight week delay in the delivery of their permanent resident card while USCIS is in the process of upgrading card production equipment.  

During this delay, USCIS Field Offices will be issuing temporary evidence of permanent residence via an I-551 stamp to applicants approved for permanent residence at the time of their interview. To receive this stamp, applicants must bring their passport to the appointment. If the applicant does not have a passport, he or she must bring a passport-style photo and government-issued ID in order to receive the stamp. If an applicant’s permanent residence is approved after his or her interview, the applicant should bring the necessary documents to an INFOPASS appointment to receive the I-551 stamp. The stamp reflects that the individual is a permanent resident and the individual is allowed to work and travel.

 

For additional information, please visit: http://www.uscis.gov.

 

Obama to Send 1,200 Guard Troops to Mexico Border : Immigration Law Answers Blog

President Obama will send up to 1,200 National Guard troops to the Southwest border and increase spending on law enforcement, yielding to demands from both Republican and Democratic lawmakers there that border security be tightened, administration officials said.

That was the opening of an article in the New York Times. Here are additional excerpts:

Homeland Security officials said that the troops would provide support to law enforcement officers already working along the border by helping observe and monitor traffic between official crossing points, and would help analyze trafficking patterns in hopes of intercepting illegal drug shipments. They performed similar tasks in an earlier deployment along the border from 2006 to 2008, when they also assisted with road and fence construction. The troops have not been involved directly in intercepting border crossers.

In addition to the soldiers, the White House said it would request $500 million in supplemental funds to pay for more federal agents, prosecutors, investigators and technology at the border.

Homeland Security officials have said that they have significantly increased border security efforts since Mr. Obama took office. Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, a former governor of Arizona, said last month that the border was “as secure now as it has ever been,” though she conceded there was room for improvement. Critics on the right derided her remarks as out of touch.

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