Immigration Lawyer Blog

Immigration Options for High-Achieving Aliens with Advanced Degrees: EB1-A

The United States provides special visa categories to attract immigrants with special abilities or skills, such as extraordinary knowledge or capabilities in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics. In addition there are also options available for outstanding researchers or professors, artists, and entertainers. The following is a discussion of EB-1A green card, one of the several of these visa categories.

 EB-1A Green Card for Alien of Extraordinary Ability

The EB-1A petition is an I-140 petition that can be used to later apply for a green card.  Extraordinary Ability (EB-1A) is a provision for immigrants of extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics. You may apply without employer sponsorship (“self-petition”), but you must be able to show that your work will be of substantial prospective benefit to the national interest of the United States. As a result of the 2010 precedent case, Kazarian v USCIS, there is a two-part test before approving an EB-1A petition.… Continue reading...

Posted in EB-1A, EB1 Extraordinary Ability, Immigration Lawyer Blog | Tagged , |

EB-5 Investor Program for foreign investors

EB-5 Investor program for Chinese Investors

Since the passage of the Immigration Act of 1990, the creation of the EB-5 Immigrant Investor program has been an accessible pathway to lawful permanent residence in the United States for qualifying investors. Participation in this program allows the USCIS to grant investors conditional two year green cards, and the opportunity to apply for permanent lawful residency at the end of two years. Approximately 10,000 visas are allocated annually to the specific EB-5 category, for the particular purpose of stimulating economic growth and creating domestic jobs. As such, qualified EB-5 applicants must be able to invest $1,000,000 in a new capital enterprise, or $500,000 in a Targeted Employment Area (TEA).  Investors must be able to present a strong business plan that reasonably accounts for the creation of 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers. The benefits of such a program can be profitable for both the financial state of the investor, as well as the residential status of the investor and their derivative family members (spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age).… Continue reading...

Posted in EB-5 Investor Green Card, EB5 Investor Program, Immigration Lawyer Blog | Tagged , , , , |

L1B “Specialized knowledge employee”

L-1B 1A few weeks ago President Obama signed several immigration memos directing certain actions be taken.  We have provided an overview of each memo several weeks ago.  This article will discuss President Obama’s memo to clarify the criteria for an L1B specialized knowledge employee.  While it has been a full month since the memos were announced, there has not yet been any clarification.  Unfortunately this does not do immigration lawyers and their clients ready to file L1B specialized knowledge cases much benefit.  The decision is to either wait for the memos to come out and restructure the cases as needed, or to just file and make future adjustments if necessary.

What is L-1B visa? Who is it for?

The L-1B nonimmigrant classification enables a U.S. employer to transfer a professional employee with specialized knowledge relating to the organization’s interests from one of its affiliated foreign offices to one of its offices in the United States.

L1B employee must prove to have “Special or Advanced Knowledge”

Due to inconsistent decisions made in past precedents by the Immigration department, L1B cases are very challenging and unfortunately cause a lot of adjudication problems.  The primary issue is what is “specialized knowledge”?… Continue reading...

Posted in Immigration Lawyer Blog, L Visa | Tagged , |

Obama’s Executive Action for Undocumented Adults

Obama's executive action for undocumented parents

The DAPA executive order expands deferred action to parents of US Citizens and Lawful permanent residents that have been in the United States since January 1, 2010.

Similar to the DACA process, DAPA will require the Applicant to show evidence of their entry in the US, their continuous presence in the US, the parent child relationship with the US Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident (Green Card holder) child.

Eliminating Age Requirement of DACA

Previously deferred action was available to children that were brought to the United States prior to their 16th birthday along with specific age requirements and are under 31 years of age, which uses the acronym DACA.  The new executive order for DACA eliminates the age requirement.  The broader eligibility requirements should make more undocumented immigrants that entered the United States either illegally or overstayed a visa eligible for deferred action.

Pro’s and Con’s of DACA and DAPA

The primary benefit of deferred action is lowering the risk of being deported and gaining employment authorization.  Deferred action is extended to a term of 3 years as opposed to the previously granted two years.  The downside of deferred action is it does not provide immigration status such as permanent residence or naturalization.  To see if you are eligible for DACA or DAPA, please visit our Deferred Action page here.… Continue reading...

Posted in Comprehensive Immigration Reform, Current Immigration News, Deferred Action, Dream Act, Immigration Lawyer Blog, Immigration Reform, Undocumented Workers |

Department of Labor – PERM Factsheet


The Department of Labor, the government agency responsible for overseeing the Labor Certification process in Employment Based Green Cards (EB2 and EB3), otherwise known as PERM has issued a fact sheet stating it’s intentions to modernize the PERM requirements and methods.  The fact sheet is likely in response to President Obama’s Executive action in other areas of US immigration that were primarily targeted towards the Department of Homeland Security.  As a Chicago based immigration lawyer regularly dealing with employment based green cards, we are always looking for ways to circumvent the tedious, expensive, and unpredictable PERM process.  As I have discussed in previous blog posts, the processing times for PERM have skyrocketed in the past few years, audits have increased, and denials have increased.  Perhaps Government Officials in charge of Immigration believe by increasing processing times and making the process more challenging and expensive for employers will reduce the amount of applicants, which will in turn reduce the backlog currently faced in the EB3 category and in EB2 for China and India.… Continue reading...

Posted in Department of Labor Factsheet, Immigration Lawyer Blog, PERM |