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H-1B Cap Reached FY2015

Filed April 7, 2014 in Temporary Visas, under H-1B Cap Count, Immigration News , tagged ,

red lights with arrows 96913798USCIS announced today (April 7, 2014) that they have received a sufficient number of H-1B petitions to reach the statutory H-1B cap for fiscal year 2015 (FY2015). USCIS has also received more than the limit of 20,000 H-1B petitions filed under the US advanced degree H-1B exemption. Unless Congress acts, no new cap-subject H-1B numbers will be available until October 1, 2015 (the first filing date for an October 1, 2015, employment start date is April 1, 2015). more »

US Embassy Caracas Suspends New Tourist Visa Issuance

Filed March 25, 2014 in Temporary Visas, under US Consulate and US Embassy , tagged , ,

Playa El Tirano Venezuela 152988847The US Embassy Caracas (Venezuela) issued a notice March 24, 2014, stating that as a result of the expulsion of several US consular officials along with Venezuelan government delays in issuing visas for incoming officers, the US Embassy Caracas does not have sufficient consular staff at present to continue to schedule appointments for first-time tourist (B-1 and B-2) visa applicants. Until further notice, the US Embassy Caracas can offer such appointments only in emergency situations. more »

Chile Designated into Visa Waiver Program (VWP)

Filed March 4, 2014 in Temporary Visas, under Immigration News, USCIS and DHS , tagged ,

Chile glacier iceOn February 28, 2014, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson announced the designation of Chile into the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), thereby streamlining travel to the United States for eligible Chilean passport holders. more »

DOS Info for US Citizens Considering Use of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) Abroad

Filed February 7, 2014 in Green Cards, under Family , tagged ,

The US Department of State has issued a fact sheet containing critical information for US citizens considering the use of assisted reproductive technology (ART) abroad, the automatic transmission of US citizenship, passport issuance to minors and other important related issues. Among other things, the fact sheet notes that citizenship is not necessarily automatically transmitted in cases where Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) has been used to conceive a child born outside of the United States. more »

Russia Travel Alert: US Department of State

Filed February 3, 2014 under DoS and Visa Office , tagged

Sochi, RussiaThe Department of State has issued a Russia Travel Alert stating that US citizens planning to attend the 2014 Olympic Games in Russia should remain attentive regarding their personal security at all times.  

The Department of State alerts US citizens planning to attend the 2014 Olympic Games in Russia that they should remain attentive regarding their personal security at all times. The Olympic and Paralympic Games will take place in Sochi, Russia, from February 7 to March 16, 2014. This travel alert replaces the alert issued on January 10, 2014, and provides updated information on reported threats against the Games. It expires on March 24, 2014. more »

South Sudan: Emergency Departure of US Embassy Juba Personnel, No Consular Services

Filed January 3, 2014 under DoS and Visa Office, US Consulate and US Embassy , tagged

On January 3, 2014, the US Department of State (DoS) ordered a further drawdown of US Embassy Juba personnel from Juba due to the deteriorating security situation in the Republic of South Sudan. DoS urges US citizens in South Sudan to depart the country. On January 3, 2014, there will be an evacuation flight arranged by the US Department of State to the nearest safe haven country. more »

USCIS Same-Sex Marriage FAQ Update

Filed August 16, 2013 in Green Cards, under USCIS and DHS , tagged , ,

blurred green light 122541138Statement from Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, July 1, 2013: “After the June 2013 Supreme Court decision holding that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional, President Obama directed federal departments to ensure the decision and its implication for federal benefits for same-sex legally married couples are implemented swiftly and smoothly. To that end, effective immediately, I have directed USCIS to review immigration visa petitions filed on behalf of a same-sex spouse in the same manner as those filed on behalf of an opposite-sex spouse.” USCIS Same-Sex Marriage FAQ Update of August 7, 2013, is below. more »

For Nationals of Kazakhstan US Visa Validity Period Increases

Filed July 23, 2013 in Temporary Visas, under US Consulate and US Embassy , tagged , ,

Kazakhstan steppe (3264-2448) 256kFor nationals of Kazakhstan US visa validity periods have increased for several nonimmigrant visa categories. As of August 1, 2013, qualified applicants applying for diplomatic, official, tourist, business, student/exchange, and media visas will be issued US visas with a maximum validity of 5 years on a reciprocal basis with the Government of Kazakhstan. more »

DHS Issues Initial Guidance on Same-Sex Immigration Benefits

Filed July 2, 2013 in Green Cards, under Family, Immigration News , tagged , ,

supreme court 144880776On July 2, 2013, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued some initial guidance regarding same-sex immigration benefits following the recent Supreme Court decision, United States v. Windsor, overturning Section 3 the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) on June 26, 2013. more »

Same-Sex Couples Eligible for Marriage-Based Green Card

Capitol Building froSupreme Court 126453805Same-sex couples are now eligible to petition for marriage-based green cards and dependent visas on the same basis as opposite-sex couples. On June 26, 2013, in United States v. Windsor, the US Supreme Court struck down Section 3 of the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which had prohibited the US federal government from providing federal benefits to same-sex couples. Since US immigration law is federal (national), prior to Windsor, DOMA prevented same-sex couples from seeking US immigration benefits based on marriage. more »

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