Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Mexico issues travel alert over new Arizona Immigration law

By MARTHA MENDOZA, Associated Press Writer Martha Mendoza, Associated Press Writer – Tue Apr 27, 4:54 pm ET

MEXICO CITY – The Mexican government warned its citizens Tuesday to use extreme caution if visiting Arizona because of a tough new law that requires all immigrants and visitors to carry U.S.-issued documents or risk arrest.

And a government-affiliated agency that supports Mexicans living and working in the United States called for boycotts of Phoenix-based US Airways, the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Phoenix Suns until those organizations rebuke the law.

"We are making a strong call to the Arizona government to retract this regressive and racist law that's impacting not only residents of Arizona, but people in all 50 states and in Mexico as well," said Raul Murillo, who works with the Institute for Mexicans Abroad, an autonomous agency of Mexico's Foreign Ministry.

US Airways spokesman Jim Olson said that "we have had absolutely no customers who have canceled fights" as a result of the controversy. Calls to the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Phoenix Suns were not immediately returned.

The boycott demand came hours after the Foreign Ministry issued its travel alert for Arizona, warning "that any Mexican citizen could be bothered and questioned for no other reason at any moment."

The law's passage shows "an adverse political atmosphere for migrant communities and for all Mexican visitors," the alert said.

Arizona's law — slated to take effect in late July or early August — makes it a state crime to be in the U.S. illegally. Lawmakers said the legislation, which has sparked huge protests and litigation, was needed because the Obama administration is failing to enforce existing federal laws.

Mexico's alert says that once the law takes effect, foreigners can be detained if they fail to carry immigration documents. And it warns that the law will make it illegal to hire or be hired from a vehicle stopped on the street.

Each day more than 65,000 Mexican residents are in Arizona to work, visit friends and relatives and shop, according to a University of Arizona study sponsored by the Arizona Office of Tourism. While there, the Mexican visitors spend more than $7.35 million daily in Arizona's stores, restaurants, hotels and other businesses, the researchers found.

Bimbo Bakeries, one of many Mexican companies operating in Arizona, said Tuesday that it doesn't expect Arizona's new immigration law to affect its employees.

"We carefully screen all associates to ensure they are authorized to work in the United States," Bimbo spokesman David Margulies said.

At the Mexico City airport Tuesday, Mexicans heading for the U.S. said they were very troubled by the new law.

"It's humiliating," said Modesto Perez, who lives in Illinois. "It's really ugly."


Monday, April 26, 2010

Inaction on immigration reform a travesty

Julian Zelizer
Special to CNN

Julian Zelizer: Both parties avoiding immigration reform.

(CNN) -- Republicans and Democrats in Congress seem to have found one issue on which they agree. Neither party wants to get near immigration reform, the new "third rail" in American politics -- an issue so politically charged that politicians risk their careers by touching it.

Since Congress failed to reach agreement on legislation in 2006 that would have offered undocumented immigrants amnesty and a path toward naturalization, both parties have kept as far away from this issue as they did from health care after President Clinton's reform went down to defeat in 1994. Read more on Inaction on immigration reform a travesty


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Which USCIS forms are eligible for e-filing?

USCIS forms eligible for e-filing are limited to specific forms. E-filing is available only for certain commonly used USCIS forms. Online filing is a simple and user friendly system which allows you to file your application online. All you need to have is a computer and an Internet connection. You can the filing fee online by using your credit card. E-filing allows you to start filling out the application online, save it, and return to it later at your own convenience. Additionally you receive immediate confirmation that your application is received by USCIS.

USCIS forms eligible for e-filing includes the most commonly used forms. USCIS has plans to extend the forms that are available for e-filing. Data submitted to USCIS through e-Filing is used to perform background checks, examinations (review of the information that is being provided by applicants), and adjudications (process by which decisions are made to grant or deny an application).

The list of USCIS forms eligible for e-filing are:

· I-90 – Application to Replace Permanent Residence Card

· I-129 – Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker (Exception: The e-Filing System is not accepting I-129 petitions for H-1B, H-2B and L-1 categories. Form I-129 filings for these categories must be filed in paper.)

· I-131 – Application for Travel Document

· I-140 – Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker

· I-539 – Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status

· I-765 – Application for Employment Authorization

· I-821 – Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821 will be available for e-Filing only if a TPS country is designated for re-registration purposes per the Federal Register Notice.)

· I-907 – Request for Premium Processing Service

Note: Though I-765 is one of the USCIS forms eligible for e-filing, the e-Filing system is not accepting I-765 for eligibility categories (c)(3)(A), (c)(3)(B), and (c)(3)(C) currently.

You cannot e-file your application, if you are applying for a fee waiver or requesting to expedite your case (with the exception of Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing). You cannot e-file your application if your form is not specified in the list above.

If you want to file any other application apart from the given list, you can paper file your application with USCIS. Each of the given forms has its own e-filing instructions which guides you to file your application online. Failure to go through these instructions may result in your application being delayed.

Supporting documents is the initial evidence that is required as proof of identification and as justification of eligibility for a benefit. USCIS decides to grant or reject your application based on these documents. Examples of supporting documents include copies of birth certificates, marriage certificate, Permanent Resident Cards, drivers license etc.

Check the form specific e-filing instructions to determine what supporting documentation, if any, is required.

Please retain a copy of your application and Confirmation receipt notice for your records. You will be required to submit a copy of your Confirmation receipt notice while you appear at the application support center to have the biometrics captured.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Requirements to file Form I-765

What are the requirements to file Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization?

Some foreign nationals who lives in the United States temporarily may file Form I-765 to request an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Some foreign nationals who are allowed to work in the United States without any restrictions must also file Form I-765 to request an EAD that shows such authorization. In order to determine the work authorization requirements, you must recognize the category in which you are eligible for EAD and need to fill in the category information on Form I-765.

Some of the categories and the requirements are listed below:

Work authorization requirements - Refugee:

File your Form I-765, EAD Application with

• A copy of Form I-590 (OR)

• A copy of a Form I-730

Paroled as a Refugee:

File your EAD Application with

• A copy of Form I-94, Arrival departure record

Work authorization requirements - Asylee (Granted Asylum)

File your Form I-765, EAD Application with

• A copy of the USCIS letter, or judge's decision, granting you asylum.

Remember it not necessary to fie Form I-765, EAD application as an asylee until ninety days before the expiration of your current EAD.

Work authorization requirements - Temporary Protected Status (TPS)

File your Form I-765, EAD Application with

• Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status.

Remember if you are filing for the first time for an EAD, then you must also include evidence of your nationality and identity as required by the Form I-821

Work authorization requirements - F1 students seeking OPT in an occupation directly related to studies:

File your Form I-765, EAD Application with

• Certificate of eligibility of F-1 status (Form I-20) Endorsed by a designated school official within the past 30 days.

Work authorization requirements - M1 students seeking Practical Training after completing studies

File your Form I-765, EAD Application with

• A completed and signed Form I-539, Application to change/Extend Nonimmigrant Status

• Form I-20 M-N, Certificate of eligibility --- For vocational students endorsed by the designated school official within the past 30 days.

Employment- Based Non-immigrant Categories - B-1 Non-immigrant who is the personal or Domestic Servant of a Non-immigrant employer.

File your EAD Application with

• Evidence that the employer is a B,F,E,H,I,J,L,M,O,R,P, or TN non-immigrant.

• Evidence that you are employed for the employer for atleast one year before the employer enters the United States.

B-1 Non-immigrant Domestic Servant of a U.S. Citizen

File your EAD Application with

• Evidence that the employer is acitizen of the United States

• Evidence that you are employed as a domestic servent outside the United States for at least 6 months prior to entering the United States.

Family- Based Non-immigrant Categories - K-1 Non-immigrant fiance(e) of U.S.Citizen

File your EAD Application within 90 days from the date of entry. Remember this EAD cannot be renewed. All EAD application except EAD for replacement must be based only on your pending I-485 application.

V-1 Non-immigrant

File your EAD Application with

• Evidence of admission into the United States such as copies of I-94, passpor.

• Evidence of V status

EAD Applicants who had filed Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status

File your EAD Application with

• A copy of I-797 receipt notice or any other evidence that the I-485 appliocation is pending.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

U.S.: Immigration Detention Abuses Continue

Source: Inter Press Service
NEW YORK, Mar 31, 2010 - More abuses in the U.S. immigration detention system came to light last week when it was revealed that two mentally disabled men continue to be held in detention while facing possible deportation for criminal assault convictions, despite having already served their time.

According to separate lawsuits filed in federal court, the two Mexican immigrants, Jose Franco-Gonzalez, 29, of Costa Mesa and Guillermo Gomez-Sanchez, 48, of San Bernardino, "have languished in detention facilities for years because authorities deemed them mentally incompetent." "Their deportation.......... read full story: Inter Press Service


Disabled Immigrants Freed After Prison Stay

Monday, April 5, 2010

What is concurrent Filing?

The stage 2 in an Employment based green card application process is filing an immigrant petition Form I-140 on behalf of the beneficiary. As per the new rule by USCIS the green card application can be filed simultaneously with I-140 petition. The process of filing Form I-140 and Form I-485 at the same time is called concurrent filing.
On Form I-140 one has the option to choose between consular processing and adjustment of status for green card application. Concurrent filing on Form I-140 and Form I-485 can be made only if the employee is currently inside the United States. Concurrent filing on Form I-140 and I-485 is not applicable if the employee wishes for a consular processing outside the United States.
The Form I-140 and Form I-485 can be filed together only when a visa number is immediately available. First one needs to determine if an visa number is immediately available. In case of employment based first preferences category the immigrant visa number is usually current, so one can apply for green card application while filing I-140. Concurrent filing of green card application based on other preference category usually depends upon the the date the labor certification application was accepted by the Department of Labor for processing when a labor certification is required. The Visa Bulletin is available using which one can check their place in the immigrant visa queue. The cut-ff dates for all the categories of employment based green card application is provided by the Visa Bulletin.
If there is no much demand than the visas in a given preference category and based on country of birth or it may be the country of changeability, then immigrant visas becomes current. If the Chart shows “C” then it means the visas is immediately or it is current and one is eligible for both filing both the Form I-140 and Form I-485 simultaneously.
When Form I-140 and Form I-485 are concurrently filed one has lots of benefits like filing the green card application earlier along with it one will be filing Employment Authorization Documents and Travel Document, so one can work legally and also can travel outside the United States.
USCIS will issue separate Receipt Notices for the Form I-140 Immigrant Petition and the Form I-485, Application to Adjust Status to Permanent Resident. The Receipt Notices will be issued on Form I-797. You can expect to receive the Form I-140 Receipt Notices within 30 days. The Form I-485 Receipt Notice will be issued to also within 30 days. The Form I-797 Receipt Notices are confirmation that USCIS has received the petition and application, and accepted them for processing.

One must wait for USCIS to complete processing of this case. Generally, an interview is not required. However, if an interview is required, USCIS will be issue an appointment notice to complete processing. If an appointment is not required, decision via mail will be sent. USCIS will most likely issue a decision on the Form I-140, Immigrant Petition before it issues a decision on the Application to Adjust Status to Permanent Resident. If I-140 is approved USCIS will process the I-485 application. If USCIS denies I-140 then I-485 will also not be processed.