The path to citizenship in the United States appears to be getting a bit more difficult. On December 1, 2020, an updated civics test will be implemented - meaning those who want to naturalize as citizens will have even more information to study about the U.S. than before. Read our latest blog to learn about the new naturalization exam.
President-Elect Joe Biden has publicly promised that he will immediately reinstate DACA upon his inauguration. We hope so. The last four years have been stressful for Dreamers - the issue of DACA has repeatedly been in courts across the country, and the future of the DACA program has seemed to sit in limbo for months, or even years, at a time. On November 2, Biden tweeted, “Dreamers are Americans - and it’s time we make it official.” We will be waiting in expectation Mr. Biden.
Being located in the Virginia Beach area surrounded by several military installations, many veterans now call our area home. On November 11th our nation celebrates Veterans Day - a day to honor all those who have served in the branches of the United States military. We want to say to all our veterans, “Thank you for your service.” Today we want to shine a light on deported veterans and the struggles they are facing because they are often overlooked. Read our latest blog to find out how to reach out to your senators to tell them you care about these veterans being able to return home to the United States.
In a move that is disappointing but not surprising, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently announced it has proposed a rule change that would prioritize H1B petitions based on wage level. The eventual fate of this proposed change may be affected by the pending outcome of the 2020 p...
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has reported that the parents of 545 children separated at the border from their families have not been found. We believe that when history looks back at this moment it will recognize that this was not one of our nation’s prouder moments.
A question we often get asked is, if I am a U.S. citizen living abroad married to a foreign-born spouse will our child have U.S. citizenship? A federal court recently answered this question in the affirmative for a same-sex couple. That definition of “child” in the Immigration and Nationality Act has expanded over the years, as new methods of conceiving a child have arisen, challenging the traditional ways our current U.S. citizenship laws have been interpreted.
Trump Administration Issues Two New Rules Making it Harder for H1-B Workers to Get Hired in the U.S.
Two rules announced from the Department of Labor and Department of Homeland Security - aimed at protecting the wages of American employees and making it more difficult for foreign workers to obtain H1-B visas - have just been implemented. Read our latest blog to learn what this means.
On October 2, 2020 USCIS was set to increase its application fees by an average of 20%. We previously reported in our Fee Increase Blog that the application fee for naturalization (among other applications) was increasing by over 80%, to a cost of $1,100. Well, for now, all of that is halted. U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White in California granted a preliminary injunction to the Immigrant Legal Resource Center and other plaintiffs in a case against the federal government, blocking the fee increases across the country pending the outcome of the lawsuit because of the arguments made by eight different non-profit organizations providing services to immigrants.
I Did Not Receive a Stimulus Check Because of My Spouse’s Immigration Status. Will I Ever Receive A Stimulus Check and Will I Get One in the 2nd Round?
Americans everywhere are unsure when or whether a second round of stimulus checks will be coming out. But as Congress attempts to converge on some sort of compromise for the good of the public, there is still a lot of confusion as to who will be getting more relief if it comes. On June 5, 2020 we reported on a class- action lawsuit filed by MALDEF (Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund) on behalf of six plaintiffs who argue that the CARES Act discriminates against mixed-status couples because it treats them differently than other married couples, in violation of the U.S. Constitution's Fifth Amendment guarantees of equal protection and due process. The case is moving forward and we are committed to keeping you informed regarding this issue.
In a federal case appearing before the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in California on September 14, 2020, a three judge panel ruled 2-1 that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) secretary “possesses full and unreviewable discretion as to whether to consider intervening events in making a TPS determination.” Read our latest blog to learn what this means and how it affects current TPS recipients.
USCIS Rules To Eliminate Path to Permanent Residence After Traveling Outside U.S. for Temporary Protected Status Holders
At Valverde Law, we have helped many families with Temporary Protected Status (TPS) obtain green cards or permanent residence after they traveled abroad and returned with a permit known as advance parole. USCIS has now eliminated this option.
The Catholic Legal Immigration Network and others are suing the Trump Administration on behalf of Central American Resource Center (CARECEN) and seven TPS holders to block a policy issued in December 2019 by embroiled USCIS Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli. The December Policy ended the practice of USCIS allowing TPS recipients with deportation/removal orders a path to lawful permanent residence and eventual citizenship.
A few weeks ago we posted a blog about the Trump Administration defying the Supreme Court's Orders on DACA. In a continued follow up to the July 28, 2020 Memo from Homeland Security Acting Secretary Chad Wolf regarding the Administration's approach to DACA at this time, USCIS just released Impl...
Former Virginia Attorney General, Ken Cucinelli, was serving as an acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and took several significant actions affecting immigration law. A federal court has found that his appointment was illegal and the Trump Administration had appealed t...
The government has announced that new USCIS fee increases will take effect on October 2, 2020. These fees will affect immigration applications filed in the United States, including our Virginia Beach community.
Court Orders a Temporary Hold on New Public Charge Rule for Green Card Applications During the Pandemic
In yet another yo-yo twist, recently a federal court issued a rule blocking the new and onerous public charge regulations during the COVID-19 pandemic. Federal Appeals Courts in two different regions came out with two different orders concerning the same public charge rule. If you feel confused, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Let us help explain what’s going on and how it may affect you.
The Trump Administration continues to openly defy court orders requiring the government to accept new DACA applications.
Still Waiting on Your Work Permit or Green Card? Be Prepared to Continue to Wait due to USCIS Printing Backlog
We've been hearing stories from people who received notices that their green card applications or work permit applications had been approved, and months later they haven't received any document or card from USCIS. Has this happened to you? If so, you are one of about 115,000 people who are al...
Did you hear about the Supreme Court decision on DACA three weeks ago and then excitedly try to apply for DACA, only to be told that new applications were not being accepted? If this sounds familiar, you were not alone in your experience. On June 26, 2020 we published a blog entitled “What Y...
We were about to report that the online exception was ending, but lo and behold, in the last 48 hours the United States has done an about-face, and will now be allowing international students to remain in the country in the fall, even if their universities are remaining on an online-only model in the fall.
This is a follow up on our 06/05/20 blog post “U.S. Citizens Married to Undocumented Spouses Sue Government for Not Receiving Stimulus Checks.” We have received many inquiries from families who have been affected by the government's discrimination against U.S. citizen taxpayers. Many are aski...
The Trump Administration Expands Suspension of Visas to Include Certain Work Visas Through the End of 2020
On June 22, 2020 President Trump issued a Proclamation extending a previous suspension of immigrant visas while expanding its reach to certain nonimmigrant work visas through the end of 2020. The Administration justified its actions by saying it will free up nearly half a million jobs for Ameri...
The Supreme Court handed a welcome win to Dreamers last Thursday when it ruled 5-4 that President Trump's attempt to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program since he took office had not met its legal standard. The DACA program protects about 700,000 DACA recipients, also...
The United States Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case considering whether a deportation notice missing information may be fixed with a follow-up notice which is of great significance to those who find themselves in deportation proceedings. The case, Niz-Chavez v. Barr, originally heard in...
The United Sates Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) offices have officially reopened their buildings, including the local USCIS office in Norfolk, Virginia. As USCIS appointments begin again, we want you to be aware of the guidance USCIS has set forth to ensure the health and safety of all who enter its buildings.