Friday, July 31, 2009

H-1B cap count updated

USCIS has updated the H-1B cap count. As of July 24, 2009, the agency has 44,900 cases against the regular (non-Master's) H-1B cap. This is only 100 more than the count on June 30. For more information, see the previous blog posts here.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Premium Processing for religious workers resumes

USCIS resumed Premium Processing (PP) for R-1 religious workers on July 21, 2009. Premium Processing guarantees a decision on the petition in 15 calendar days, for an extra $1000 government filing fee.

For religious workers, Premium Processing is available to petitioners who pass a site inspection at the location where the beneficiary will work. If the site inspection was at a different location, or if the petitioner failed the inspection, PP will be rejected.

Premium Processing is limited to R-1 nonimmigrant petitions; it is not available for permanent residence religious worker petitions.

For more details, see the USCIS Press Release and Q&A.

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Monday, July 27, 2009

Immigration attorney arrested for her own marriage fraud

The DHS enforcement division, ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) announced today that it had arrested an Ohio immigration attorney and an associate on charges of marriage fraud.

According to the ICE Press Release, Lilian Asante, the lawyer, and Kwadwo Asante, a businessman, are alleged to have entered into separate marriages with two US citizens in order to obtain citizenship. The pair currently live together.

Marriage fraud carries a penalty of up to a $250,000 and/or five years imprisonment.