National Foundation for American Policy: “H-1B Denials and Requests for Evidence Increase Under the Trump Administration”

by Joseph McKeown


H-1B denials and Requests for Evidence (RFEs) increased dramatically in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2017 soon after President Trump took office, according to a report by the National Foundation for American Policy (NFAP) that used data from US Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS). The report by NFAP, a non-profit and non-partisan public policy research organization, includes data showing that H-1B petition denials increased by forty-one percent from the third quarter to the fourth quarter of the 2017 fiscal year. Additionally, RFEs issued in the first three quarters of the 2017 fiscal year came to 63,599 combined, almost equaling the total number of RFEs—63,184—issued in the fourth quarter of the 2017 fiscal year.

Read More

GQ: “Immigration Judges Are Rebelling Against the White House’s Efforts to Turn Courts into Deportation Machines”

by Joseph McKeown


After Attorney General Jeff Sessions removed an immigration judge from a case and reassigned the case to himself and then to another judge who consequently ordered the individual to be removed (i.e., deported), immigration judges and advocates have voiced their protest. The case involved Judge Steven Morley of Philadelphia who used “administrative closure” to suspend a case when a man named Reynaldo Castro-Tum failed to appear before him in immigration court. Administrative closure is used, for example, when the individual couldn’t make it to court for logistical reasons, including the summons being sent to the wrong address. Sessions responded by assigning the case to himself, issuing a decision that severely restricts the use of administrative closure, and instructed Morely to deport the individual if he didn’t show up again.

Read More

Bloomberg Law: “Immigration Lawyers to Trump: See You in Court”

by Joseph McKeown


As a result of increasingly strict immigration policies and more petition denials under the Trump administration, more attorneys are considering suing the federal government. “I’ve been preaching the gospel” of litigation, attorney Thomas Ragland tells Bloomberg Law. Ragland says that although businesses have in the past been more reluctant than individuals to sue, he is encouraging corporate clients to pursue litigation in certain cases. He says: “Employers should consider litigation in cases where they think the agency got it wrong.”

Read More

Consequences of Violating Your Visa Status

by Nithya Swaminathan


Foreign nationals who violate their visa status can face serious consequences. Just ask Peter. Who is Peter? Okay, Peter is not a real person. He is a fictional foreign national who, to be clear, is not based on any of our clients (and any resemblance to a real person is entirely coincidental). Let’s say that Peter enters the United States as a B-2 tourist on December 5. The immigration officer processes his entry and Peter now has an I-94 (now electronic) with valid status until June 5.

Read More