» Immigration Law

Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) May 2, 2016 – When Obama was elected, immigrants thought immigration reform had begun. It had to a certain extent. Now Ted Cruz and Donald Trump (the Crump Effect) have cast a pall on immigration reform, effectively driving immigrants back into the shadows. The Obama administration did make landmark strides in effecting changes in the immigration system. While many of his actions met with dissent and controversy, many immigrants applauded what he accomplished for them. Many got the prevailing message of the day — it is okay to be illegal because that is going to […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) April 21, 2016 – The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has launched the Known Employer Pilot Program (KEPP), to evaluate a new process for employers for employers who want to hire certain foreign national workers in employment-based visa categories. The Known Employer Program would require an employer to pre-qualify first by setting up an online profile in a Web-based Known Employer Document Library. The employer would then upload documents to that library. USCIS would evaluate eligibility requirements and once approved, permit an employer to file foreign national eligibility documents without company supporting evidence. The pilot […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) April 11, 2016 – Immigration enforcement just took a turn for the worse. An officer was recently charged with obtaining sex and/or cash from undocumented immigrants while promising protection and working papers. Deportation has been a hot button for a long time, particularly since Obama’s executive orders relating to immigration seemed to be at odds with what federal deportation officers were doing. Says the Economist: “America is deporting immigrants at nine times the rate of 20 years ago; nearly 2 million so far under Barack Obama, easily outpacing any previous president.” And yet, government figures […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) March 11, 2016 – On January 13, 2016, bipartisan members of Congress introduced a bill to address inequities arising out of a recent amendment to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) that affects certain persons with dual nationalities. “In less than one month from passage of the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015 in late December 2015, bipartisan legislation has been introduced to eliminate clear discrimination against certain dual nationals of visa waiver countries and of Iraq, Iran, Syria and the Sudan,” said Stewart Rabinowitz, a Dallas immigration attorney with Rabinowitz […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) March 8, 2016 – The H-1B visa program has been coming under attack lately. Ted Cruz wants a moratorium on H-1B visas by stopping the program in the hopes that the problem will go away. Most frauds in the H-1B visa are likely perpetrated by the computer consulting industry. “Is there fraud in the H-1B program? Yes. But the way to stop it is not through a moratorium,” said well-respected Houston immigration attorney, Annie Banerjee. H-1B is the visa classification given to professional workers to work in US Companies. Big computer consulting companies, the end […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) March 1, 2016 – Can the President of the United States issue executive orders and change the law, or just administer the existing laws? In 2014 when Congress failed to pass the DREAMER Act, President Obama responded by deferring DREAMER deportations. In response to deportation protesters, Obama expressed that there should be no need for animosity, saying “I just took an action to change the law.” These words have prompted the Supreme Court to review the president’s power over deportation policy, and in a broader sense, the president’s executive power to change or dispense with […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) February 26, 2016 – On December 18, 2015, President Obama signed the Consolidated Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year (FY) 2016. The bill contained several immigration provisions which amended the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and extended several programs until September 30, 2016, including E-Verify, Special Immigrant Religious Workers, The Conrad 30, and EB-5 Regional Centers provisions. The appropriations law changed the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) in several significant ways. Under the VWP, nationals from 38 countries may visit the U.S. for up to 90 days without applying for a B-1/B-2 visa at a U.S. consular post […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) February 1, 2016 – In a controversial deportation operation, over 121 Central American adults and children who sought legal asylum in the U.S. were deported and ordered to leave the country. The operation was the first large-scale effort to deport people who fled from drug wars in Guatemala, Honduras, Belize and El Salvador. The law versus compassion is a tough battle in which to pick sides. What is the right thing to do in a situation where the chief of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security plans to deport hundreds of families whose asylum applications […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) January 27, 2016 – A study by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that the government’s efforts to detect fraud in asylum requests could be better implemented. The study, Asylum: Additional Actions Needed to Assess and Address Fraud Risks, identified several ways that fraud detection could be improved. “Asylum standards are the same as refugee standards; the former is an application made in the United States, the latter made abroad,” said Stewart Rabinowitz, a noted Dallas immigration attorney with Rabinowitz & Rabinowitz, P.C. “As to asylum, the USCIS is charged with developing the means […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) January 4, 2016 – What was once a faint hope began to possibly take shape when the government said the paper forms used by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services would be digitized and put online. It was a good idea while it lasted. In the process of attempting to implement the good idea, the federal government has shelled out over $1 billion to date to get those records and application forms online. That process started 10 years ago and today there is not much to show for it, with the single exception of one […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) December 23, 2015 – A proposed new rule would expand work authorization for F-1 foreign students with STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) degrees. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published the proposed rule Oct. 19, 2015. The proposed rule allows eligible foreign students to extend their F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT) for 24 months beyond the usual 12-month OPT period, provided certain requirements are met. This is a change from a 2008 rule that had permitted a 17-month extension. “While the proposed regulations extend STEM employment authorization to 24 months yielding a total […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) November 18, 2015 – A class action lawsuit has been filed against the U.S. Department of State, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, and numerous government officials over changes in green card eligibility requirements in the amended October’s Visa Bulletin. The amended October Visa Bulletin released by the State Department moved the cutoff dates for certain Indian and Chinese immigrants backward, limiting the number of foreign nationals in those categories to submit green card applications. For Indian applicants, the dates were pushed back two years, and for Chinese immigrants, the dates were moved back 16 months. […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) November 5, 2015 – The Department of State (DOS) has retracted the Visa Bulletin of Sept. 9, 2015, which listed a set of filing dates for which immigrants could apply for an adjustment of status or immigration visa. A revised Visa Bulletin has moved these dates further back in time — the EB-2 Priority Date is now July 1, 2009. If an individual’s priority date is after that date, they cannot file in October. Additionally, the Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) suspended all employment applications for all countries until Oct. 1, 2015 as they had […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) October 21, 2015 – On Aug. 31, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that the process of electronic payment of the $165 USCIS immigrant visa fee has been simplified. Payment of the immigrant visa fee is required for foreign nationals and is the concluding step to actually being able to receive a Permanent Resident Card, also known as a green card. It is typically paid after an immigrant receives his or her immigrant visa abroad and before boarding an aircraft to the United States. Until the recent changes, the immigrant was required to […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) Otober 7, 2015 – Immigration reform has many benefits for the country as a whole, including how it would positively affect worker’s wages. However, there is an argument that unskilled immigrants compete with unskilled American workers for jobs. Either way that argument is worked, the issue remains the same. Without immigration reform and the implementation of significant, substantial changes, no one benefits to any great degree and the country remains at a standstill with millions of undocumented immigrants living in the shadows. “This is, at best, a murky area as many American born workers do […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) September 11, 2015 – A bill has been introduced in Congress that would allow foreign nationals who are in the United States in E-2 status to become eligible to apply for permanent U.S. residency after 10 years in E-2 status. As background, the United States has treaties with more than 60 countries that provide for investment. The treaties permit citizens of a treaty country to make an investment in the United States provided the treaty investor meets certain requirements. The E-2 treaty investor visa must make a substantial investment in an active commercial enterprise, and […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) September 1, 2015 – In the latest of moves ostensibly aimed at aiding illegal immigrants, the Obama administration is attempting to make it easier for them to come back to the U.S. after returning to their homeland to apply for a visa. “The administration appears to be attempting to promote family unity, but it seems that move has offended the political conservatives who consider it to be another prime example of lax immigration enforcement,” said well-respected Houston, Texas, immigration attorney, Annie Banerjee. Currently, foreigners have to apply at the U.S. Consulate in their home country, […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) August 19, 2015 – The 2015 Top Lawyers list, published by H Texas Magazine, recognizes top lawyers in their fields as nominated and voted for by their peers. “It is indeed an honor to be recognized by my immigration colleagues for the second year in a row,” said principal attorney, Annie Banerjee, at the Law Office of Annie Bannerjee, Houston, Texas. In 1996, Annie Banerjee graduated from the South Texas College of Law, ranking the third highest in her class and on a full academic scholarship. She made the Dean’s List and worked as Assistant […]


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Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) August 13, 2015 – The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is cracking down on unregistered broker dealers receiving commissions within the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. The EB-5 program allows a foreign national to obtain a green card if he or she invests money in the United States, either in a new or existing business, or in a “regional center,” a third-party managed investment vehicle. Regional centers are permitted to charge the immigrant investors an administration fee for creating and developing investment projects, but as recent action by the SEC makes clear, companies, immigration attorneys […]


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Houston, TX (Law Firm Newswire) August 3, 2015 – Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives John Boehner stated during his recent visit to Ireland that he is going to make immigration reform a top priority. His remarks, given his previous refusals to bring the topic to a vote, may be construed as placating and conciliatory. “Immigration reform has been a gleam in many a politician’s eye since the first attempt at making it happen,” said well-respected Houston immigration attorney, Annie Banerjee. “Due to the nature of politics, though, not much has happened other than quick patches to appease certain […]


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