Thursday, January 7, 2010

New FAQs on Vaccination Requirements

The USCIS has issued new information on the vaccination requirements for foreign nationals here.  The guidance explains that applicants for US permanent residence need to be vaccinated against the following:
  • Mumps
  • Measles
  • Rubella
  • Polio
  • Tetanus and Diphtheria Toxoids
  • Pertussis
  • Influenza Type B
  • Hepatitis B
  • Any other vaccine-preventable diseases recommended by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices.
The guidance answers questions regarding why vaccination is required, what proof is needed of prior vaccinations, what happens if vaccines are not medically appropriate, e.g. because the applicant is pregnant, how to get a waiver of the vaccination requirement, etc. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

More on Affidavits of Support

I blogged about Affidavits of Support here last year, and that blog post has received far more comments so far than any other post. I cannot answer specific questions via the blog , so I hope that last year's FAQs are a help. I recently found another great FAQ publication here, from the National Immigration Law Center (NILC). The NILC article links to other useful resources from the government and from NILC itself. I hope you find this as informative as I did.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

New system for prevailing wage determinations implemented

The Department of Labor (DOL) has implemented a new system for requesting prevailing wage determinations (PWD), starting on January 1, 2010. Starting on that date, all PWD requests ust be sent to the National Prevailing Wage and Helpdesk Center (NPWHC). This means that State Workforce Agencies will no longer accept PWDs for PERM, H-1B, H-1B1 (Chile/Singapore), E-3 (Australia) or H-2B programs.

Where to send requests
Employers or their attorneys now must request a PWD on Form ETA-9141.  Initially, the form must be send by mail or other delivery service (UPS, FedEx, etc) to:

U.S. Department of Labor ETA,
National Prevailing Wage and Helpdesk Center ,
Attn: PWD Request,
1341 G Street, NW, Suite 201,

Washington, DC 20005-3142.

DOL is implementing a system for electronic submission of PWD requests and I will report as soon as this is finalized.

PWD Results
DOL will send the PWD results by e-mail, if the requestor lists an e-mail address on the Form 9141. Otherwise, the results will be mailed.

Processing Times.
DOL will process PWDs in the order they are received. The Department recommends that applicants submit the PWDs at least 60 days before they are needed, e.g. before recruitment starts for PERM.

DOL FAQs on the new system are here.