January 2020 Newsletter
1. Continuation of EB-1 Worldwide Backlog, Mainland China Moved Forward 1 Week; EB-2 Rest of the World (ROW) Continues to be “Current”, Mainland China Moved Forward 9 Days
The U.S. Department of State’s (DOS) most recently released Visa Bulletin for January 2020 shows a continuation of worldwide backlog for EB-1, and cutoff dates for issuance of an EB-1 immigrant visa for Mainland China born applicants have moved forward 1 week to May 22, 2017.
On the other hand, the Visa Bulletin for January 2020 shows that EB-2 for Rest of the World (ROW) is “current”, and cutoff dates for issuance of an EB-2 immigrant visa for Mainland China born applicants have moved forward 9 days to July 1, 2015.
Apart from F2A Spouses and Minor Children of Green Card Holders, USCIS will accept Mainland China born adjustment of status applications for all other family-based cases and employment-based cases based on the “Dates for Filing” charts.
The January 2020 Visa Bulletin can be found here.
2. USCIS Announces Implementation of H-1B Electronic Registration Process for FY 2021 Cap Season, Initial Registration Period from March 1 through March 20, 2020
On December 6, 2019, USCIS announced that it has completed a successful pilot testing phase and is implementing the registration process in the next H-1B lottery. Petitioners seeking to file H-1B cap-subject petitions will be required to pay a $10 fee for each electronic registration they submit to USCIS for the H-1B cap selection process.
USCIS will open an initial registration period on its new registration system from March 1 through March 20, 2020 for FY 2021 H-1B petitions. Only those with selected registrations will be eligible to file H-1B cap-subject petitions.
USCIS will be releasing more information and instructions on how to complete the registration process along with key dates and timelines as the initial registration period nears.
In the meantime, if you are currently a student working on OPT, and are looking to continue working in the U.S. in H-1B status via the FY 2021 H-1B lottery, attorneys at ALG urge you to check with your employer soon to see if they can sponsor you on an H-1B visa.
USCIS’ alert can be found here.
3. USCIS Expands Guidance Related to Naturalization Requirement of Good Moral Character
On December 13, 2019, USCIS expanded its policy guidance regarding unlawful acts that may prevent an applicant from meeting the good moral character (GMC) requirement for naturalization. An act is unlawful if it violates a criminal or civil law of the jurisdiction where it was committed.
This update to the Policy Manual provides additional examples of unlawful acts and instructions to ensure USCIS adjudicators make uniform and fair determinations, and further identifies unlawful acts that may affect GMC based on judicial precedent.
USCIS’ alert can be found here.
ALG SUCCESS STORIES
EB-1A Petition Approved within 6 Months for Integrated Marketing Expert in Internet Security Ms. M is an integrated marketing expert in internet security. She serves as Media Director for a world-recognized internet security organization, strategically developed 27 trademark registrations, received multiple national and international awards, and is regarded as “master in marketing” by major media outlets. Given Ms. M’s extraordinary skill in the integrated marketing for internet security, ALG filed and obtained EB-1A approval for her as a person of extraordinary ability.
To demonstrate Ms. M’s extraordinary ability, ALG submitted evidence of Ms. M’s critical role in an internet security organization with distinguished reputation; her numerous awards and honors in internet media; her membership in prestigious internet communication organizations; her original contributions and further applications of her trademarks; her published articles in media sources extremely relevant and highly respected in the field; and nationally circulated publications, including media reports and interviews, that features Ms. M and her work.
Under regular processing and without a request for additional evidence, USCIS approved this EB-1A petition within 6 months.