Presentation on theme: "Immigration Workshop For International Students (F-1 & J-1)"— Presentation transcript:
1 Immigration Workshop For International Students (F-1 & J-1) Eugene Goldstein, Esq.Law Offices of Eugene Goldstein & Associates(212)Baruch CollegeSeptember 30, 2010
2 Choosing an Immigration Lawyer Four Tips#1: Lawyer Must be a Member of AILA#2: Only Pay a Fixed Legal Fee#3: Only Immigration Law#4: Student Should Pick aLawyer Via Reliable Reference
3 Where to get the Right Advice? Foreign Student AdvisorsThe Appropriate LawyerCheapest is not the best.Find the specialist - don’t choose lawyers who advertise for general practice.New York City Legal Referral ServiceorBeware of Mistaken Perception of New Laws
4 Beware of Non-Lawyer Experts, Notarios, Travel Agents, etc. To Report Unauthorized Practice of LawN.Y. County District Attorney’s Office –Northern Manhattan –N.Y. Attorney General’s Office -To Confirm Lawyer in New YorkUnified Court SystemLawyer licensing is by state. Please checkeach state’s board of bar examiners online.
5 The Various Federal Agencies: DOS (Department of State) through its Visa Office and the U.S. Consulates issue Visas.CBP (Custom and Border Protection) – the “Gatekeeper”, they stamp you in.This is the first point of contact at airports or other ports of entry.USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) -Decides motions to reinstate, changes of status, and employment cards – and maybe one day, green cards.ICE (Immigration and Custom Enforcement) –The immigration police who manage SEVIS and enforce compliance.USDOL, HHS, Selective Service, Social Security
6 Employment Options for F-1 International Students Employment on CampusEmployment for Unanticipated Severe Economic NeedCurricular Practical Training (CPT)Optional Practical Training (OPT)
7 Employment on CampusEmployment on campus within your school or with an independent company serving the school’s usual needs.Limitations – Maximum 20 hours per week during school year, full time during vacation periods.USCIS authorization not required.
8 Employment Based on Economic Need Employment after one year of study at each school if there has been unforeseen severe change in your financial position (such as a large devaluation of your country’s currency, loss of a scholarship, large tuition increase), sponsor’s death, bankruptcy, or natural disaster.Eligibility – must be under F-1 status for at least one academic year, good academic standing, continued full-time status, inability to find campus employment.Limitations – Maximum 20 hours per week during school year, full time during vacation periods; permission granted for one year at a time.USCIS authorization required - EAD
9 Curricular Practical Training (CPT) Employment as part of a student’s educational experience, offered by an employer through agreement with the school.Must be in college catalogue.Eligibility – F-1 status for at least nine months (which can be waived for graduate students under certain circumstances) and/or continued student status.Limitations – limited to internships, co-op education, alternate work/study program, required practicums. Maximum 364 days or no OPT.Must be authorized by designated school officials.
10 Optional Practical Training (OPT) Employment for up to one year after graduation in a job related to your field of study.Duration - one year for each academic level.Eligibility - F-1 student applies 90 days prior or 60 days after completion of studies. Requires employment after approval.Limitations – 20 hours if school is in session, deduct from full time of one year OPT.One year + 17 months if STEM with E-VERIFY.Must be authorized by USCIS and the designated school official – EAD.
11 General Issues Finding a Job Employers CAN Discriminate Against International Students.What to Say in the Job Interview?Should I disclose that I will need to be “sponsored”?What should I say?Sell Yourself.Please call my very reputable lawyer.The employer does not need to advertise for the H-1B category.
12 What is a Visa? What is Status? The Key to Enter the U.S.This is a Travel DocumentConsulate Laminates into PassportStatus:I-20 or Certificate from School (DS2019)I-94 Stamped at EntryChange by USCIS while in the U.S. if in statusNote OPT is Under F-1 Status
13 H-1B Specialty Occupation = Professional 4 year degree or higher Major from Degree Must Match Job DutiesNot What you Have – But What the Job Needs:For example: Registered Nurses are not professional as job requires only a 2 year degree.For example: Specialty or head nurse does qualify as job requires B.S. degree.Full Time(35 hr+) vs. Part Time (must be able to support yourself)
14 H-1B Specific To Employer 6 Year Limit (3+3, etc.) 1 Year Outside U.S. Before Reenter in H-1B CycleReclaim Time Spent Outside U.S.Prove with Entry/Exit Stamps, Boarding Passes, Frequent Flier Records, Etc.AC21 Extension if Pending Employment-Based Green Card Applications for 1 YearSpecific To EmployerEach Employer Must Petition.One Employer/One Petition, OrMultiple Employers/Multiple Petitions.Use of an Agent Employer For Multiple Short Jobs – Issues of Principal/Agent (January 2010 USCIS Memo)
15 H-1B Cap 65,000 +/- Government Fiscal Year is 10/1 – 9/30 Plus 20,000 Advanced U.S. DegreesGovernment Fiscal Year is 10/1 – 9/30DOL Permits Filing 6 months EarlyFile 4/1 – 4/5If Over Cap LotteryIf you win the H-1B lottery – OPT extended to 10/1 H-1B start date with employment – but no travel.If you lose – continue in school or consider alternative visa categories, or go home.
16 H-1B Jobs Exempted from Quota Employment at a U.S. Institution of Higher Education (Colleges or University) or a Related/Affiliated Non-Profit Entity.Employment at a Non-Profit Research Organization or a State or Local Government Benefiting the Federal Government – Not Directly by the Federal Government.
17 Six Year Maximum When Should H-1B Petition be Filed? Give Up OPT Completely or Partly.Gamble each year to capture Your H-1B When Available – Uncertainty.Can change or add employer with a new petition and begin when filed.Official USCIS Receipt.
18 Employer Files for H-1B: Labor Condition Application – LCANot Labor Certification – No Newspaper AdvertisingI-129H-Supplements (Statistics, Fee Exemption), Explanation Letter, Supporting Documents (Credentials, Employer Bona Fides)Costs =Filing Fee $320Training Fee $750 (for companies of 25 employees or less/$1,500 if 26 employees or more) by EmployerFraud Detection Fee $500 by EmployerPremium Processing Fee $1,000New Fee – Additional $2,000 for “Company having 50 or more employees in US and more than 50% of their employees are non-immigrant works on H1B and L1, L2 visas
19 Change Status or Consular Notice Change of StatusWhile in the U.S.Still in StatusConsular NoticeTo Obtain Visa Outside the U.S.If Out of Status
20 Other Categories If H-1B is Unavailable or Not Appropriate: E-1: Treaty TraderE-2: Treaty InvestorL-1: Intercompany TransfereeO-1: Extraordinary IndividualP-1: Entertainment GroupTN: NAFTA (Mexico, Canada)Free Trade: Chile, SingaporeA: DiplomatG: Non-Government DiplomatEx: National Monetary Fund, U.N., World Bank,etc.I: JournalistR: Religious Worker
21 Green Card CategoriesFamily-BasedEmployment-Based
22 Green Card QuotasLimited Number of Places Each Year for Specific Family and Employment Categories.Place in Line Set by Petition Filing Date.Changes Each Month – Check the Visa Bulletin WebsiteThere Could be Long Quota Delays.In Order to Adjust Status in U.S., Must Remain in Lawful Status.
23 Family-Based Green Card (I-130) Immediate Relative (Above the Quotas):Marriage to Citizen (USC)Parents of USC (Includes Under 21 Children)Preference Categories:Unmarried Sons and Daughters (Over 21) of USC (Age Out Provisions - CSPA)Spouses, Children and Unmarried Sons and Daughter (Over 21) of LPR.Married Sons and Daughters of USCSiblings of Adult USCTo Adjust Status in U.S. – Remain in Lawful Status.If Unable to Adjust Status in U.S. – Consular Process if Able.
24 Family-Based Green Card Relationships must be bona fide.Relief is available for spousal abuseVAWA Applies to Both Women and Men.Go to hospitalCall policeTake photos of injuriesPrivate Agencies:Sanctuary for Families24hr Hotline (800) 621 – HOPENYC (212) 349 – 6009New York State:New York State's 24-hour Domestic Violence Hotline: (800) (English) (800) (Spanish)
25 EMPLOYMENT Green Card Categories (The I-140) EB-1Extraordinary (no Sponsor)ExceptionalOutstanding Professor or ResearcherInvestorsInternational Transferees (Managers/Executives)
26 EMPLOYMENT (cont.)EB-2Waiver of Labor Certification in the National Interest:Work in National InterestFirst Among Equals – Able to Make Unique ImpactNo Petitioner
27 EMPLOYMENT (cont.) EB-2/3: Labor Certification Schedule A - Not the LCA (Labor Cert. Exempt) – Nurses, Physical Therapists.Special Handling – College TeachersGeneral WorkersIf job requires Masters+5 years experience, EB2, Otherwise EB3
28 EMPLOYMENT (cont.) Labor Certification PERM Delays U.S. Job Offer: Objectively describe duties, experience, education.Requirements must be open to U.S. workers, not particularized to applicants’ skills.Must show no U.S. worker is able, willing, qualified or available at the prevailing wage.
29 EMPLOYMENT (cont.) Quotas Limited Pool of Places Each Year by Category and by Country.Fewer Places in EB3, Therefore Delays Up to Many YearsEB-2 Delays for China and IndiaIf Legal in U.S. Adjust Status in U.S.If Out of Status, Consular Process, but, May be Banned for 3 or 10 Years If Unlawfully Present (180 days grace period)Exempt From Unlawful Presence if D/S.
30 Diversity (DV) Lottery 50,000 places each year for citizens of countries with low representation in U.S. immigrant flow.If you are outside the U.S., or within the U.S. and in legal status, apply through during eligibility period.Paying someone to file for you will not help.Selectees will be notified of their selection through the Entry Status Check available starting May 1, 2011 at the E-DV websiteWinners should act on reliable advice within the one year window of eligibility.10/5/10-11/03/10
31 Law Offices of Eugene Goldstein Contact InformationEugene Goldstein, Esq.Law Offices of Eugene Goldstein& Associates150 Broadway Suite 1115New York, NY 11038(212)Fax: (212)
32 Law Offices of Eugene Goldstein & Associates Immigration Workshop For International Students (F-1 & J-1)Eugene Goldstein, Esq.Law Offices of Eugene Goldstein & Associates(212)Baruch College