January 2019 Newsletter
1. Continuation of Worldwide Backlog, but USCIS’ Final Decision on Submitted Applications Moved Forward 3 Months, for EB-1 Green Cards
The U.S. Department of State’s (DOS) most recently released Visa Bulletin for January 2019 shows a continuation of worldwide backlog for EB-1. Although there has been no forward movement to the visa bulletin for EB-1s in terms of submitting green card applications, the priority date in which USCIS gives the final decision on already submitted green card applications has moved forward 3 months.
USCIS will accept adjustment of status applications based on the “Dates of Filing” charts for both family-based and employment-based cases.
The January 2019 Visa Bulletin can be found here.
2. H-1B Work Visa: Plan Early and Seek Professional Consultation Every first business day of April, USCIS begins accepting petitions from U.S. employers who are looking to sponsor a foreign employee for an H-1B visa. The first step in the entire H-1B process is to identify a sponsoring employer. If you are currently a student working on OPT, attorneys at ALG urge you to check with your employer soon to see if they are willing to sponsor you on an H-1B visa.
The H-1B visa eligibility criteria is three-fold: 1) the position must be a specialty occupation; 2) the employee must have a bachelor’s or higher degree; and 3) the salary must meet the prevailing wage.
To meet the requirements of the H-1B visa, the offered position must qualify as a specialty occupation, which must meet one of the following criteria:
1) A bachelor’s degree or higher is the minimum entry requirement for the position; 2) The degree requirement for the job must be common to the industry, or the job is so complex or unique that it can be performed only by an individual with a degree; 3) The employer typically requires a degree for the position; 4) The nature of the specific duties is so specialized and complex that the knowledge required to perform the duties is usually associated with the attainment of a bachelor’s or higher degree.
The employee’s eligibility for the H-1B visa is determined by his or her education. The employee must have completed a degree in the specific specialty occupation in the U.S or abroad, or have education, training or experience in the specialty that is equivalent to the completion of such a degree.
Moreover, the wages paid to the H-1B employee must be above the prevailing wage. The prevailing wage rate is defined as the average wage paid to similarly employed workers in a specific occupation in the area of intended employment.
ALG attorneys have extensive experience working on H-1B cases. Just for the H-1B FY 2019 cap season alone, ALG has attained an approval rate of 96%. Reach out to us to learn more about the H-1B visa!
ALG SUCCESS STORIES
EB-1A Petition Approved within 2 Months for Independent Filmmaker
Mr. L is an independent filmmaker, and he is a regular winner of independent film competitions in the U.S. Despite his young age, his films have been featured in several major film festivals, including the Cannes and Santa Fe Film Festivals. Given Mr. L’s extraordinary skill in independent filmmaking, ALG filed and obtained EB-1A approval for him as a person of extraordinary ability.
To demonstrate Mr. L’s extraordinary ability, ALG submitted evidence of Mr. L’s numerous awards in independent film competitions; his scholarly article publications in movie reviews and industry journals; and nationally-circulated publications, including media reports and interviews, that features Mr. L and his work.
Even with a request for additional evidence, which ALG attorneys swiftly responded to, USCIS approved this EB-1A petition within 2 months from initial submission.
L-1A Petition Approved in 15 Days for General Manager of Tire Company Mr. Y had been serving as the General Manager of a successful Chinese tire manufacturing and sales company for more than 12 years where he oversaw a total of 10 employees. The U.S. subsidiary company wanted Mr. Y to serve as General Manager, bearing the primary responsibility of its overall management and strategic development, as well as to oversee its 7 employees in the U.S.
ALG attorneys carefully reviewed all probative documents and drafted a detailed petition letter to incorporate all the supporting documents to prove the Chinese company’s thriving business and the genuine business need to expand to the U.S. market.
USCIS approved this L-1A petition in 15 days without a request for additional evidence.