Articles Posted in Other visas

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The powerful earthquake that hit Chile moved the entire city of Concepcíon, Chile 3 meters to the west! When such a natural calamity strikes a particular country, the immigration lawyers at Romben Law, APC in Los Angeles receive many calls and e-mails from citizens from that country about the possibility of staying in the USA, because of the problems back home.

The US government sometimes permits citizens from that country to remain in the USA — even after their visas or landing permits have expired — due to the emergency circumstances in the home country. This designation — which is called Temporary Protected Status (TPS) — is made by the US government. At the present time, Chile has not yet been designated a TPS-eligible country by the US government.

A veces, por situaciones de urgencia nacional, el gobierno estadounidense les permite a ciudadanos de algunos paises de quedar en los EE.UU. — aunque sus visas o permisos sean vencidos. Esta designación se llama Estado Protegido Temporal (TPS, en inglés). En este momento, los ciudadanos de La República de Chile todavía no han sido nombrado como eligible por TPS por el gobierno estadounidense.

Beginning January 4, 2010, applicants for visas or greencards will no longer be considered inadmissible for being HIV positive. Early last month, the Health and Human Services Department (HHS) removed HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) from the definition of a “communicable disease of public health significance.”

This marks a major success by immigration advocates like Romben Law, APC and HIV/AIDS health advocates. J Craig Fong (Retired from the practice of law) was cited in a recent Los Angeles Times article as one of the few immigration attorneys in the nation who work with HIV positive immigrants and who has been extremely successful in HIV waiver applications with the USCIS to overcome this ban.

Romben Law, APC applauds the Centers for Disease Control, the HHS, and USCIS in recognizing that the ban against nonimmigrant visa and permanent residency applications by HIV positive individuals was wrong. –ecf

Microphone.jpgRomben Law, APC in Los Angeles has received several calls about artists who have been involved in the preparations for the series of Michael Jackson concerts which were scheduled to take place in London beginning this summer. The performer’s recent death has thrown arrangements for those concerts into chaos.

Although the Jackson concerts were to take place in the United Kingdom, extensive preparations were taking place both in the UK and in the United States. In preparation for any big rehearsal, event, performance, or concert, teams of make-up artists, costume designers, hair stylists, choreographers, dancers, back-up vocalists, special effects personnel, music arrangers, musicians, lighting engineers, etc. etc. come together to create the shows that so many enjoy. The number of people involved with a complex series of high-tech, music and dance spectaculars can be upwards of 50 -100 people, not all of them American.

Renowned performers and artists can qualify for the O-1 visa (“extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics) to enter the USA. However, when something catastrophic happens — like the death of a performer — the performance or concert on which the O-1 visa is based is cancelled, the performer or artist risks falling out of legal immigration status.

The nonimmigrant visa (B-1 / B-2) rules for HIV-positive people who want to visit the USA have been issued by the US Department of State (DOS).  Los Angeles-based immigration law firm Romben Law, APC counsels and represents many HIV-positive persons, and unfortunately, the new nonimmigrant HIV Waiver Authorization puts HIV-positive people in a difficult position.

US immigration law denies entry to the USA to aliens who are HIV-positive.  For nonimmigrants who wish to come to the USA as business or touristic visitors, the procedure has been to apply for a waiver under Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) sec. 212(d)(3)(A)(i).  This waiver procedure is expensive, time-consuming, and exposes the applicant to possible arbitrary, capricious, or AIDS-phobic decisions of some adjudicating officers.

DOS has put into effect a procedure where the visa officer now has the authority to grant otherwise-visa-qualified HIV-positive applicants a B-1 / B-2 visitor visa, provided the alien signs a declaration (DS-5512) that:

Something as innocent as obtaining a nonimmigrant extension of stay (EOS) can be fraught with difficulty.  As immigration lawyers here in Los Angeles, Romben Law, APC sees many people who have filed the the I-539 EOS application themselves, and the application has been denied or rejected because the applicants did not provide the immigration authorities with appropriate information.  Always be sure:

1.  the name on the application matches the name on the passport,
2.  copies — do NOT send USCIS originals, unless USCIS specifically requests them in a letter to you — of the face-page, visa page, entry stamp, and the I-94 arrival document should be included,
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