August 2010 Archives

August 31, 2010

H-1B Quota: Slow and Steady Usage

Yet another update to the H-1B quota, also known as the Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 H-1B cap.

Approximately 34,900 cases have been receipted by USCIS for the regular Bachelor's degree H-1B quota.

Approximately 13,000 cases have been receipted by USCIS for the advanced degree H-1B quota open to applicants who have earned Master's or higher degrees from US colleges and universities.

Good luck to all H-1B applicants! ---ecf

August 25, 2010

Elin Nordegren: Her Side of the Story

Elin Nordegren broke her silence today and gave her side of the story today telling the world how shocked and embarrassed she was by Tiger's infidelity. She also defended the marriage, saying that the marriage was real, not orchestrated for the cameras and sponsors.

In our practice at Law Offices of J Craig Fong, we have seen many marriages, like Elin and Tiger's which were entered into for love, completely genuine marriages and yet within years (sometimes a lot sooner), the marriage goes awry. For those immigrants whose conditional greencards were based on marriages to US citizens, these men and women find themselves in a situation like Elin, telling their stories to the USCIS, actually defending themselves from deportation, that even though their marriage didn't survive the test of time, it was not a marriage of convenience for immigration purposes.

If a marriage fails anytime before someone naturalizes, a person who immigrated through marriage will later be summoned by the USCIS for an intense and very uncomfortable interview in order to maintain their permanent residency - even at the time of applying for citizenship. Such interviews can even occur years after the marriage and divorce, so recounting the facts of a relationship and providing the documentation to verify the facts of the courtship, the wedding or civil ceremony, then detailing the timeline of marriage, separation and divorce is more than just burdensome, it's sometimes impossible. attorneys at the Law Offices of J Craig Fong have defended clients in such interviews, which can take several hours! Not to mention the legal briefing and the administrative review that can take months to years in the most complicated cases.

We have counseled couples and immigrants who face this difficult situation, sometimes their marriages have ended because they had to escape physical or emotional abuse, other times, the marriage failed because of infidelity or even financial distress. If you need help telling your side of the story to USCIS, call the attorneys at Law Offices of J Craig Fong for a free consultation. Maybe we can help. --ecf

August 23, 2010

Naturalization - Yet Another Reason to Seek Citizenship

The attorneys at Law Offices of J Craig Fong have helped hundreds of legal immigrants seek citizenship over the years. Whether we have worked with you at a naturalization drive, through labor unions, or in our own offices, citizenship is the ultimate goal of most immigrants. Today, the government announced that cash assistance to elderly and disabled immigrants who were granted entry based on humanitarian reasons may lose benefits unless they have naturalization applications pending. Many of those affected are people who were granted asylum or refugee status.

Most immigrants are eligible for naturalization after a 3 or 5 year period after their initial residency period begins. Many immigrants delay applying for naturalization because they fear the English or history exams. While the naturalization exam can seem daunting, the government allows for applicants to re-take their exams if they fail the first time. Some immigrants who are long term residents may even take the examination in their native language, but many immigrants simply put off the naturalization process because it has become intimidating or costly. However, in most cases, an immigrant who truly desires to naturalize and is eligible to do so can make an application and be successful with the right type of support and preparation. Today's announcement by the administration poses yet another reason for immigrants who have been putting off their citizenship application to call and find a qualified immigration attorney to help them with the process. The Law Offices of J Craig Fong encourages those eligible for naturalization make an application and realize their dreams of finally becoming US citizens. ---ecf

August 10, 2010

H-1B Quota Update - Little Change

As of August 6, 2010, approximately 28,500 regular H-1B cap cases have been receipted by USCIS and approximately 11,900 advanced degree cases. Keeping in mind that H-1B extensions and changes of employer petitions don't count against the cap, initial H-1B applicants are in good shape this fiscal year since the quota is far from being exhausted. ---ecf