Yardum-Hunter to speak for Business Section San Fernando Vallely Bar Assn.

For the San Fernando Valley Bar Association, Ms. Yardum-Hunter on February 13, 2013 at 12 pm will deliver a presentation for the Business Law Section on "Immigration Law for the Business Lawyer" including why immigration law is important for business clients, what are H-1Bs, what’s controversial about them, and current Congressional proposals on immigration reform. This event will take place at the Bar headquarters at 5567 Reseda Boulevard #200, Tarzana, CA 91356. To register, go here: https://www.sfvba.org/Calendar/Signup.aspx?EventNo=1372

Yardum-Hunter to Speak at Southwestern Law School

At an event of the consortium of Armenian Law Students Assns. from the Los Angeles area, Alice Yardum-Hunter will again speak on preparing for a career in the legal profession. 

Ms. Yardum-Hunter focuses these presentations on those who are not clear they want to practice law, or who don't know which specialty to choose. Drawing from her own experience, she asks the audience to think back on those memories in life which gave them the most vivid, happy memories when they were engaged in some project or activity, not necessarily having to do with school or work. From those memories, as students look to their future, they should be able to find a path toward a satisfying career. 

Alice remembers running to the mail every day as a child in hopes the National Geographic Magazine would be there. When it came once a month, she delightedly poured over the pictures before she could read in awe of the wonder of our planet and its peoples. From this beginning, she wanted to learn more about the world and paved a path to immigration law, a field which gives her much pleasure in the challengs and knowing she profoundly affects people's lives by simply providing them choice as to where to live.

Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver Guidance

As of March 4, 2013, immediate relatives of U.S. citizens (spouses, parents of adult U.S. citizens, and minor children) who are physically present in the U.S. will be able to request a provisional waiver of unlawful presence bars to admissibility under INA 212(a)(9)(B)(i) before departing the U.S. for consular interview in connection with their immigrant visa for permanent residence ("green card"). Applicants will have to pay the immigrant visa processing fee before departing the U.S., as well as demonstrate that denial of the waiver would result in extreme hardship to the U.S. citizen immediate relative. The waiver may be denied if other bases of inadmissibility are suspected, but even if not, inadmissibility is still possible though much less likely, particularly with a meticulously prepared application and thorough examination of other possible inadmissibility before any application is filed. If there are not other bases of inadmissibility, such waivers will be granted. The provisional waiver should prove to be an enormous benefit to keeping families together with as little separation as possible and heartbreak on account of denial with no advance warning. Such has been the case until now.

Immigration Relief for Small Businesses

In recognition that small businesses cannot withstand the same amounts for fines and penalties for employment of undocumented workers, the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer reduced the penalties for an employer's I-9 violations by nearly two thirds citing they appeared disproportionate to the size and character of a "mom and pop" business.

Yardum-Hunter to speak for State Bar of CA on Ethics in Business Immigration

For the State Bar of California, International Law Section, Alice Yardum-Hunter will deliver a webinar on "Immigration 101: Ethics and Business Immigration," January 23, 2013, 12 - 1pm. She will cover employment based immigration ethics issues, particularly H-1B, O-1 and PERM applications. Also covered in the seminar will be EB-5 Ethics issues. To register, go here: http://calbar.inreachce.com/Details?groupId=dec4a0ad-7b82-4532-88c7-e626a4037f67. One continuing legal education (CLE) credit in ethics will be provided.

USCIS Provides Guidance to Employers of Childhood Arrivals with Deferred Action

Today UISCIS provided guidance to Employers on Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and the I-9 obligations for such employees. 

Those who receive DACA relief will be issued Employment Authorization Cards which may be one of the types of proof acceptable for I-9 purposes. An employer may not require particular documentation to prove employment authorization.

Some employers will be hiring those with DACA relief for first time employment. In those cases, those granted DACA should be treated like any other employee when filling out a new I-9.

Other employers may need to either prepare new or update existing I-9s. Employers of existing employees should prepare new I-9s when changes are made to Section 1 consisting of the employee's name, date of birth, attestation or social security number in the existing I-9..

Employers should update an existing I-9 when the information in Section 1 has not changed and the employee presents a new Employment Authorization Card.

For further information, please call the office at 818 609 1953 or see this USCIS link: http://www.aila.org/content/default.aspxdocid=42149&utm_source=AILA+Mailing&utm_campaign=9fa9497935-AILA8_11_19_12&utm_medium=email.

DV Lottery Season to begin and end soon

On Tuesday October 2, 2012 at noon Eastern Daylight time, the Diversity 2014 Lottery (DV-2014) begins. The end date for submission is Saturday November 3, 2012 at noon Eastern Daylight time.

The DV Lottery is a means to immigrate to the U.S. on a random basis without a petition. Approximately 5% of entrants who apply win a DV Lottery immigrant visa. 55,000 DV Lottery visas are issued annually. The purpose of the lottery is to balance from where immigrants to the U.S. are coming to the U.S. to live permanently.

Once chosen, it's only necessary to show a high school diploma (or equivalent) or two years’ experience in the last five years working in a skilled job requiring at least two years’ experience to perform, plus meet the usual admissibility hurdles regarding criminal conduct, health and national security issues.

Only natives of certain countries qualify. Natives from these countries do NOT qualify: BANGLADESH, BRAZIL, CANADA, CHINA (mainland-born), COLOMBIA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, ECUADOR, EL SALVADOR, HAITI, INDIA, JAMAICA, MEXICO, PAKISTAN, PERU, PHILIPPINES, SOUTH KOREA, UNITED KINGDOM (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and VIETNAM. 

Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan are eligible. In the past Guatemalan natives did not qualify, however, they do now.

For more information on the DV lottery, go here http://travel.state.gov/pdf/DV_2014_Instructions.pdf or feel free to call Alice Yardum-Hunter’s office at 818 609 1953.

Yardum-Hunter Wins Case on Advance Parole Travel

On August 16, 2012, the same day as the Matter of Arrabally and Yerrabelly published by the Board of Immigration Appeals, the Administrative Appeals Office of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services broadened the scope of the published decision in its decision on one of Alice Yardum-Hunter's cases.

Yardum-Hunter's case involved a Canadian who traveled on Advance Parole travel permission given by the government as part of his adjustment of status application for permanent, green card status. The client applied for the green card at a time when he'd been in the U.S. more than the maximum time for visitors, by several years, but he was not issued an I-94 arrival-departure card requiring him to leave by a specific date. Canadians are often not issued I-94 cards. Still, they are supposed to depart the U.S. after six months of visiting.

The Arrabally and Yerrabelly decision had to do with travel on advance parole for adjustment of status applicants, who filed when their status was expired, based on their I-94. 

The government in these cases denied green cards after travel on approved advance parole travel permission, but for the authorized travel, their cases would have been approved.

As a result of the published decision, evidenced in Yardum-Hunter's case on the same day, the government can no longer deny adjustment of status to those who travel when the government has granted them permission to travel on advance parole. The differing facts - for those with expired I-94s and for Canadians without expired I-94s - signal expansion of this proposition, perhaps generally to all those who travel on advance parole, pending adjustment of status, regardless of their particular circumstances as long as those have not changed since their cases began. 

Many wondered how other travel would be treated after the published decision. Between that case and Yardum-Hunter's, the government signal is that no longer can it punish a person for simply traveling on a permit issued by the government for that purpose.

Travel on advance has been an area of concern for adjustment of status applicants because there is no regulation as to what it really means. The published Arrabally and Yarrabelly case, along with Yardum-Hunter's provide some confidence in solving this common problem.

Yardum-Hunter to speak on Issues Confronting Business Persons, including Criminal Matters

Alice Yardum-Hunter will speak for the Armenian Bar Assn. on the topic of A Siurvey of Immigration Issues Confronting Business Clients, in hypothetical format, including overlay of criminal matters. This 1.5 credit CLE will be held at at the Phoenicia Restaurant in Glendale at 6:30 pm. Speakers also include Immigration Judge Amy Hoogasian, Lucy Avedissian and Richard Tashjian. Cost is $35 for members and $45 for non-members.

Deferred Action to be available August 15

I am writing to you to give you some good news. Finally, after years of wondering whether you, a family member, or associate might ever achieve lawful immigration status in the U.S., on June 15, 2012, President Barack Obama announced application of Deferred Action to those commonly known as “Dreamers.” Deferred action defers removal proceedings from the U.S. Dreamers are young people who came to the U.S. due to no decision of their own. Now, as young adults, they find themselves undocumented and without any means of regularizing their status. Deferred Action provides some relief to Dreamers. On August 15, 2012, applications will start being accepted by the government. 

You or someone you know could qualify for Deferred Action if: 
• Born after June 15, 1981;
• Arrived in the U.S. before the age of sixteen;
• Have continuously resided in the U.S. since June 15, 2007 to the present (short
departures mostly acceptable);
• Present in the U.S. on June 15, 2012 and on the date of application;
• Entered the U.S. illegally or lawful status expired as of June 15, 2012;
• Currently in school, graduated or received certificate of completion from high
school, obtained a General Education Development (GED) certificate, or are
honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard or the U.S. Armed Forces; 
• At least fifteen years old at time of filing, if not in proceedings or if your case was
terminated before your application (those currently or in the past have been in
removal proceedings without “termination” may apply if under 15); and
• Not have been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense
(sentenced to more than 90 days, or a conviction for domestic violence, sexual
abuse, burglary, firearm violation, drug distribution or trafficking (but not
possession), or DUI, regardless of the sentence), three or more non-significant
misdemeanors, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

Those who are in removal proceedings, have been granted voluntary departure, or have left the U.S. but otherwise qualify for Deferred Action may still be able to qualify.

Unable to pass legislation for more than 10 years that would provide permanent resident “green cards” to these people, as a result of implementation of already existing executive policy, the President has lawfully been able to at least defer the removal of Dreamers. Though permanent residence is not achieved, the program will likely be similar to other temporary measures which later became indefinite, lengthy, or otherwise ultimately lead to permanent residence. 

An application for Deferred Action will not be disclosed to immigration enforcement authorities except when otherwise required in limited circumstances. Legal advice will assist in understanding this risk. By not applying, a person could forever give up a non-risky chance of a lifetime. 

Applications made before August 15 will be rejected. This is the first day forms will be available from USCIS.

Please contact or refer to the office for further information you, your loved one, friend or other associate. Finally, some relief for Dreamers is available. 

Deferred Action for Dreamers

President Obama announced today that those who may have benefited from the DREAM Act, had it passed sometime over the past 10 years or so, may now qualify to defer removal from the United States for two years.

While this new executive branch application of the long available benefit has not before been applied to such persons, Deferred Action is not new.

Please standby as details unfold. Regulations are meant to be in place by August 15.

H-1B Cap Reached

On June 11, 2012, USCIS received a sufficient number of petitions to reach the statutory H-1B cap for FY 2013 (starting October 1, 2012). On June 7, 2012, it received more than 20,000 H-1B petitions on behalf of persons exempt from the cap under the advanced degree exemption. USCIS will now reject petitions subject to the cap for H-1B specialty occupation workers seeking an employment start date in FY 2013. Employers wishing to hire first-time workers subject to the H-1B cap will have to wait until April 1, 2013 to file their cases for work that will begin no earlier than October 1, 2013, the first day of FY 2014. USCIS continues to accept petitions exempted from the cap and DOD cooperative research worker H-1B petitions, as well as Chile/Singapore H-1B1 petitions requesting an employment start date in FY 2013.

7th Annual Community Law School Speech

The Orange County Korean American Bar Assn. on Saturday April 28, 2012, 8:30 am to 12:30 pm will host it's annual Community Law School. This free event will be at Grace Ministries International, Room 205A and 205B, 150 S. Brookhurst Road, Fullerton, CA 92833. Attorneys in attendance will receive 2.5 credits in continuing legal education in five practice areas. Ms. Yardum-Hunter will speak on Updates and Hot Topics in U.S. Immigration Law at 10:30 am.

Syrian TPS

Syria has been designated for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) based on deteriorating security conditions there. The effective dates for the designation, as well as dates and procedures for the TPS registration process for Syrian citizens in the U.S., will be detailed in a Federal Register notice that publishes next week. Applications should not be submitted until the designation becomes effective.

EB-2 India & China Retrogression

Charles Oppenheim from the Department of State announced at the mid-west regional meeting of the American Immigration Lawyers Assn. that EB-2 Master Degree and Exceptional Ability aliens native of China and India are expected to retrogress to August 2007 as of May or June 2012.

Pending petitions and applications for such individuals should be filed soonest to avoid wait due to quotas affecting visa availability after filing as much as possible.

Israeli E-2 Visas Not Yet

Legislation which would accord E-2 status to Israeli citizens and nationals is making its way through the legislative process in the U.S. On 3/19/12, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 3992 by a vote of 371-0. There is a companion bill in the Senate, S 921, introduced by Senator Schumer on 5/9/11, however the Senate Judiciary committee has not yet considered this bill. 

To become law, this legislation must be adopted both in the U.S. and reciprocally in Israel. This law is expected to pass. 

E-2 status is for investors who make substantial investments in the U.S. which are not marginal. The hope is that such investments will spur job creation and assist in stimulating the U.S. economy.

Yardum-Hunter to speak on Entertainment Industry Permanent Residence Options

Alice Yardum-Hunter will speak March 13, 2012 8-9:30 for the American Australian Assn. on Green Card Immigration Options. It will include focus on EB-1 extraordinary ability, EB-2 exceptional ability and master degree aliens, and EB-3 professional and skilled workers and also include discussion of the Dept. of Labor requirements of standard labor certification, Schedule A Group II Exceptional Ability (for those in performing arts positions and otherwise in entertainment). The event takes place at the Century Plaza Towers, 2029 Century Park East, Century City, CA 90067.

LA County Bar Awesome EB-5 Seminar

Join some of the nation's leading experts on EB-5 including Ira Kurzban, Ron Klasko, Martin Lawler and Jan Pederson in this one day affordable continuing education seminar offered by the LA County Bar Assn. EB-5: Still the Gold Mountain is the organization's premiere education event set for on February 11, 2012 at the Marriott in downtown LA. 

It's for lawyers, American business seeking capital and foreign born folks seeking immigration status. With $1 million or less invested, the creation of 10 jobs can secure permanent residence. 

If you're interested, you can register here: http://onlinestore.lacba.org/calendar/#ViewCalendarEvent.cfm?1=1&CalendarEventID=3831