FOR THE WEEK OF FEB. 3, 2023
The Biden Border Crisis: Part I – First House Judiciary Committee Hearing of the 118th Congress
- On Feb. 1, 2023, the House Judiciary Committee conducted a marathon hearing to discuss various issues related to the ongoing border crisis. The hearing was titled “The Biden Border Crisis: Part I”
- The witnesses and members of the committee discussed various aspects of the crisis, including border security, migration flows, processing and asylum reforms, smuggling and interdiction, coordination among federal, state, and local authorities, and workforce requirements.
- Given the new Congress, this issue will remain front and center and we expect border legislation to be passed through the House. We also expect additional hearings on this topic in the next few weeks.
Biden Administration Announces COVID-19 National and Public Health Emergencies Will End in May 2023
- The Administration announced it was extending the national and public health emergencies beyond their current respective deadlines of March 1, 2023, and April 11, 2023, until May 11, 2023.
- USCIS tied its Form I-9 and RFE flexibility provisions to the COVID-19 national emergency. Our team will monitor how the end of the national emergency will affect USCIS and the State Department.
USCIS Begins Issuing Redesigned Green Cards and EADs
- Starting Jan. 30, 2023, USCIS will issue redesigned green cards and EADs
- USCIS issues new cards with enhanced security feature every three to five years to combat fraud
- Existing cards remain valid and USCIS will continue to produce cards with the previous design until its current supply is depleted.
DHS Extends and Redesignates Haiti for TPS
- TPS for Haitians has been extended from Feb. 4, 2023, to Aug. 3, 2024
- Redesignation allows Haitian nationals who have been continuously residing in the U.S. since Nov. 6, 2022, may apply for TPS for the first time
Texas and 19 Other States File Lawsuit Challenging Expanded Parole Program
- The states are challenging the parole program, which will allow up to 360,000 Venezuelan, Cuban, Haitian, and Venezuelan nationals to be paroled into the U.S., as violating the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) and exceeding DHS’s statutory authority.
- The plaintiffs are Texas, Alabama, Florida, Alaska, Arkansas, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
USCIS Announces FY 2024 H-1B Lottery Registration
- The initial H-1B registration period will be from noon EST March 1, 2023 until through noon EST March 17, 2023
- Registrants will be able to create new myUSCIS accounts beginning noon EST Feb.21, 2023.
- For FY 2023, USCIS received 483,927 H-1B registrations. Those with selected registrations will have their myUSCIS accounts updated to include a selection notice, which includes details about when and where to file.
FOR THE WEEK OF FEB. 10, 2023
- Sens. Lindsey Graham and Dick Durbin have introduced the Dream Act of 2023, seeking once again to protect DACA beneficiaries. If enacted, it would protect and provide permanent legal status to more than 1.9 million DACA beneficiaries.
- Congressman Lloyd Smucker (R-PA) is about to reintroduce his Essential Workers for Economic Advancement Act. It would create an immigration visa system for less-skilled workers to do year-round, non-farm work. Employers and potential immigrant laborers apply for federal approval to hire these workers and workers are only allowed to enter the U.S. when they have received approval from the government. These visa workers would only be allowed to work for an approved employer at the approved location for the specifically approved job.
State Department Plans to Launch Pilot Program for Domestic Visa Renewal in 2023
- Pilot program will launch later this year to allow H and L visa holders to renew their visas without leaving the U.S.
- The program requires establishing a domestic consular services agency
- Visa renewals in the U.S. were discontinued in 2004
- The State Department says it is bringing back domestic visa processing because of the problems visa applicants had during the pandemic and to reduce the workload of consulates and embassies
USCIS Starts Mailing ADIT Stamps in Boston
- USCIS has started mailing ADIT stamps, which serve as proof of lawful permanent residence, with the applicant’s picture on an I-94
- The applicant calls USCIS Customer Service and requests an ADIT stamp. USCIS Customer Service then notifies the Field Office, which will issue the Form I-94 with the ADIT stamp
- USCIS has not yet indicated that this new form of identification is acceptable for I-9 purposes.
- The new program is currently limited to Boston, but will likely be rolled out on a nationwide basis