233,000 Reasons to Fix the Broken H-1B Program

April 13th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced today that it received nearly 233,000 H-1B petitions for 85,000 slots last week. Horrible.

Businesses, prospective employees, HR specialists, and attorneys all over worked hard during the previous months to prepare applications. The Department of Labor’s labor condition application system was actually backlogged, so that certifications took longer than usual. All sorts of money was spent in preparing applications.

The odds of even being considered are less than 50%.

This is economically wasteful. Meanwhile, applications received unnecessarily high scrutiny, with attorneys increasingly having to go to court just to get a rational evaluation of whether a position is a specialty occupation.

Increasingly, the H-1B program is entering the land of the absurd. Businesses are right to demand an H-1B program that better serves the public interest.

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Now That The H-1B Cap Is Full

April 7th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

It comes as no surprise that the U.S.’s H-1B cap is full, once again, in the first week. A lottery will now take place, and the odds of being chosen are likely less than 50%. Let’s say your an employer or employee, and you don’t get one of those lottery spots. Here are a few alternatives that can be considered.

-Some employers are “cap exempt”. These include institutions of higher education as defined by the Higher Education Act of 1965; entities affiliated or related to such institutions; or a non-profit research organization or governmental organization. If an employer qualifies under one of these exemptions, they can apply for H-1Bs throughout the year.

-Canadians and Mexicans may be eligible to work as a TN NAFTA worker if their occupation listed on the NAFTA schedule. Many science professionals are listed on this schedule (e.g. Biologists, Chemists, Biochemists).

-Recent STEM graduates from U.S. universities may be able to extend Optional Practical Training an extra year.

-Some employers may want to pursue or offer to pursue permanent residence for applicants. Initial adjudications of labor certifications are taking 5 to 6 months right now. If approved, an I-140 Petition for Alien Worker can be submitted via premium processing and be initially adjudicated in 15 calendar days. If an immigrant visa is immediately available, permanent residence then could be pursued via consular processing or in some cases adjustment of status.

-Aliens of extraordinary ability may wish to file an O visa petition, or even a permanent residence application. The agency may require much in the way of evidence. Self-petitioning is available.

-Certain spouses of H-1B holders who are in pursuit of permanent residence will be able to apply for work authorization beginning May 26th.

-Intracompany transfer statuses (L and EB-1) are available for persons who’ve worked in qualifying positions in organizations abroad.

-Persons from some countries may wish to look into E-1 Treaty Trader and E-2 Treaty Investor opportunities.

There are other strategies as well, but I wanted to provide a brief list of some of the common answers to “What next?” for those seeking immigration answers. One additional answer for “What next?” is businesses and stakeholders need to let Congress know that the current H-1B program is not addressing their needs.

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USCIS Issues L-1B Adjudications Policy Memo

March 27th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services issued a long awaited memo on L-1B adjudications. L-1Bs are intracompany transfers who are transferred due to their specialized knowledge. Adjudications in this area are notoriously inconsistent, with far-reaching implications for global companies that need to be able to move their talent into the United States.

The memo itself is an interim memo. The agency is accepting feedback on it until May 8th. The agency will also be hosting a stakeholder call concerning the memo on April 9th.

The first five pages of the memo are largely a history lesson in the back and forth guidance that the agency has given on the subject since 1994. In recent years, requests for evidence at Service Centers have been as common as not on L-1B petitions. Literally. Approximately 2/3 of California Service Center applications are issued Requests, and 1/3 are denied, despite steep costs. Border applications for Canadians under NAFTA can be wildly erratic.

The memo focuses first on the preponderance of evidence standard, which is a good start. This standard only requires proof that an applicant more likely than not has specialized knowledge.

The memo then focuses on the definition of specialized knowledge, and emphasizes that it can include “advanced level of knowledge or expertise”. It then says knowledge should be distinct or uncommon as compared to that generally found in the industry; or advanced knowledge that “is greatly developed or further along in progress, complexity and understanding than generally found within the petitioning employer.”

The memo provides a non-exhaustive list of factors to look at, and notes that specialized knowledge cannot be easily imparted, but does not need to be proprietary knowledge and the U.S. labor market need not be tested. Further, the memo says the knowledge need not be narrowly held within the petitioning organization, and the person need not have a high salary or be in management. Finally, eligibility for other nonimmigrant classifications should not preclude L-1B eligibility.

The memo, 15 pages in all, discusses other relevant issues such as off-site employment, qualifying employment, and examples of indicia of knowledge.

The memo offers a great deal of information that can be useful for making a case for L-1B eligibility. The Adjudicator’s Field Manual will ultimately be amended to incorporate the final memo.

Historically, the agencies have really struggled in implementing guidance such as this. USCIS is largely funded by user fees, and so at some level, there is incentive to adjudicate narrowly, so as to encourage the receipt of more applications.

The pessimistic view is that complexity breeds complexity in a bureaucracy, and so a 15 page memo of guidance may simply lead to longer requests for additional evidence and denials. A more optimistic view is if the agency begins truly adjudicating based on the preponderance of evidence standard, the memo could result in more predictable outcomes.

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U.S. and Canada Sign Pre-Clearance Agreement

March 16th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

The U.S. and Canada announced today the signing of a pre-clearance agreement, which is intended to ease border congestion and increase border efficiencies. The agreement is a product of the 2011 Beyond the Border Action Plan, which has led to modest improvements in immigration processing.

The Agreement addresses several pre-clearance issues, such expanding pre-clearance to new locations; sharing locations at certain, smaller ports of entry; allow firearms for officers at pre-clearance locations; regularrize some pre-clearance operations; and update the current Air pre-clearance agreement to reflect post-9/11 concerns.

The Pre-Clearance Agreement requires legislation to take effect. DHS’s Press Release cites The Civilian Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act as fitting to this need.

Here is the full-text of the annoucement:

U.S. and Canada Sign Pre-Clearance Agreement

Release Date:
March 16, 2015

WASHINGTON – Consistent with the initiatives outlined in the 2011 Beyond the Border Action Plan, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson and Canadian Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Steven Blaney today signed the Agreement on Land, Rail, Marine, and Air Transport Preclearance Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Canada. This new agreement reaffirms the United States and Canada’s commitment to enhancing security while facilitating lawful travel and trade, and supersedes the existing U.S.-Canada Air Preclearance agreement signed in 2001.

“After years of hard work and negotiations, today we have one of the most significant, visible, and anticipated products of the Beyond the Border initiative – a major achievement that will produce significant benefits for the United States and Canada,” said Secretary Johnson. “This agreement will help facilitate the legitimate trade and travel that keeps our economy thriving as we maintain utmost vigilance to the security of our borders. We remain committed to our deep partnership with Canada, a true ally, neighbor and friend of the United States.”

“Our Government’s top priority remains creating jobs and opportunities for Canadians,” said Minister Blaney. “This historic new agreement builds on decades of successful preclearance operations in Canadian airports. It will enhance the security at our border and create jobs and growth in Canada by improving the flow of legitimate goods and people between our two countries.”

This Preclearance agreement – allowing for the immigration, customs and agriculture inspections required for entry into either country to occur on foreign soil – will reduce congestion and delays at the border and increase efficiency and predictability in cross-border travel, tourism and transportation. The new agreement provides officials of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) with the requisite authorities and tools to conduct their border security, facilitation, and inspection processes in the other country.

This agreement will:

-Allow for the consideration of requests for new preclearance locations across all modes;

-Enable exploration of co-location at small and remote ports, if desired;

-Provide updates to the Air Preclearance Agreement to better reflect the post 9/11 operating environment, including policies and tools utilized at domestic ports of entry;

-Enable Canada to request that the United States regularize existing U.S. immigration pre-inspection sites – for example at cruise, rail and ferry terminals in British Columbia;

-Enhance authorities for preclearance officers including the ability to carry firearms, defensive tools, and restraint devices to the same extent that Host Party officers are permitted to carry in the relevant operating environments;

-Address officer privileges and immunities through a shared jurisdictional framework in which the sending country may generally exercise primary criminal jurisdiction for acts committed by its officers in the performance of official duties in the Host country; and

-Retain the civil and administrative prosecutorial jurisdictions for preclearance officers provided for in the current Air Preclearance Agreement.

Given the groundbreaking nature of the agreement, the United States and Canada must enact legislation for it to be implemented. The Civilian Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act was introduced in the last Congress, and we are hopeful of its reintroduction in this Congress. Currently, the 2001 U.S.-Canada Air Transport Preclearance Agreement continues to apply.

Preclearance is the process by which CBP Officers stationed abroad screen and make admissibility decisions about passengers and their accompanying goods or baggage heading to the United States before they leave a foreign port. CBP officers do, however, retain the authority to inspect passengers and their accompanying goods or baggage after arriving in the United States. CBP officers currently conduct preclearance operations at eight Canadian airports: Calgary, Edmonton, Halifax, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Vancouver and Winnipeg.

This agreement achieves a key component of the Beyond the Border: A Shared Vision for Perimeter Security and Economic Competitiveness Action Plan. On February 4, 2011, President Obama and Prime Minister Harper released the Beyond the Border Declaration, articulating a shared vision in which our countries work together to address threats at the earliest point possible while facilitating the legitimate movement of people, goods and services across our shared border. The Action Plan outlines the specific steps our countries intend to take to achieve the security and economic competitiveness goals outlined in the Beyond the Border Declaration.

For more information, visit www.dhs.gov.

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H-1B Cap Subject Petitions Accepted on April 1st for Anticipated Lottery

March 2nd, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

H-1B cap-subject petitions will be accepted by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on April 1st. The H-1B category is one of the United States’ key nonimmigrant options for professional workers.

It is universally anticipated that the agency will receive more applications than the 85,000 available slots. Last year, the agency received approximately 172,000 applications in the first week of April. Lotteries have been held the past few years, and almost assuredly there will be one again this year, with even worst odds than last year.

Now is the time to begin (or finish) preparation of H-1B applications for the April 1st deadline. If you are a U.S. employer considering bringing a non-citizen on staff, we suggest that you schedule a consultation in the next week or two, just so the H-1B is available for discussion. Please note that even if a petition is accepted in the lottery, and then approved, the earliest possible start date will be October 1st.

Employers may also want to consider other alternatives to the H-1B for key personnel, including E-1 and E-2 visas (Treaty trader/Treaty Investor), O visas (extraordinary alien), L visas (intracompany transfer), E-3 (Australian professional), and TNs (NAFTA workers for Canadian and Mexican professionals). Additionally, in some cases, it may make more sense to apply directly for permanent residence based either on a labor certification or on the career achievements of the applicant.

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Certain H-4 Dependents Able to Apply for Employment Authorization Beginning May 26

February 24th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

USCIS published its much anticipated rule for H-4s to apply for work authorization. H-4 holders are dependents of H-1B professionals. Many other countries already allow spouses of professionals to apply for work authorization.

The rule allows a limited number of H-4 holders to apply for work authorization, beginning May 26th. It will probably take three to four months from filing to obtain the work authorization document.

The rule is very limited, as work authorization will be limited to a.) dependent spouses of H-1B holders with approved I-140 petitions (immigrant alien worker petitions) or b.) dependent spouses of H-1B holders who have been given a post-six year cap one year extension pursuant to Section 106(a) and 106(b) of the American Competitiveness in the 21st Century Act.

This change in law helps H-1B holders and their families who have been approved to immigrate, or in the process, but have to endure multiple-year waits for an immigrant visa, due to visa backlogs.

Hopefully as time goes on the agency will further open up availability of work authorization for H-4s. Economic studies show such a policy attracts the world’s best talent, and creates jobs.

Here is the USCIS’s announcement of the program:

DHS Extends Eligibility for Employment Authorization to Certain H-4 Dependent Spouses of H-1B Nonimmigrants Seeking Employment-Based Lawful Permanent Residence

Release Date: February 24, 2015

WASHINGTON – U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director León Rodríguez announced today that, effective May 26, 2015, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is extending eligibility for employment authorization to certain H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants who are seeking employment-based lawful permanent resident (LPR) status. DHS amended the regulations to allow these H-4 dependent spouses to accept employment in the United States.

Finalizing the H-4 employment eligibility was an important element of the immigration executive actions President Obama announced in November 2014. Extending eligibility for employment authorization to certain H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants is one of several initiatives underway to modernize, improve and clarify visa programs to grow the U.S. economy and create jobs.

“Allowing the spouses of these visa holders to legally work in the United States makes perfect sense,” Rodríguez said. “It helps U.S. businesses keep their highly skilled workers by increasing the chances these workers will choose to stay in this country during the transition from temporary workers to permanent residents. It also provides more economic stability and better quality of life for the affected families.”

Eligible individuals include certain H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrants who:

Are the principal beneficiaries of an approved Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker; or
Have been granted H-1B status under sections 106(a) and (b) of the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-first Century Act of 2000 as amended by the 21st Century Department of Justice Appropriations Authorization Act. The Act permits H-1B nonimmigrants seeking lawful permanent residence to work and remain in the United States beyond the six-year limit on their H-1B status.

DHS expects this change will reduce the economic burdens and personal stresses H-1B nonimmigrants and their families may experience during the transition from nonimmigrant to lawful permanent resident status, and facilitate their integration into American society. As such, the change should reduce certain disincentives that currently lead H-1B nonimmigrants to abandon efforts to remain in the United States while seeking lawful permanent residence, which will minimize disruptions to U.S. businesses employing them. The change should also support the U.S. economy because the contributions H-1B nonimmigrants make to entrepreneurship and science help promote economic growth and job creation. The rule also will bring U.S. immigration policies more in line with those laws of other countries that compete to attract similar highly skilled workers.

Under the rule, eligible H-4 dependent spouses must file Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, with supporting evidence and the required $380 fee in order to obtain employment authorization and receive a Form I-766, Employment Authorization Document (EAD). USCIS will begin accepting applications on May 26, 2015. Once USCIS approves the Form I-765 and the H-4 dependent spouse receives an EAD, he or she may begin working in the United States.

USCIS estimates the number of individuals eligible to apply for employment authorization under this rule could be as high as 179,600 in the first year and 55,000 annually in subsequent years. USCIS reminds those potentially eligible that this rule is not considered effective until May 26, 2015. Individuals should not submit an application to USCIS before the effective date, and should avoid anyone who offers to assist in submitting an application to USCIS before the effective date.


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Expanded DACA, DAPA on Hold After Preliminary Injunction

February 19th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

President Obama’s attempt to expand the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and implementation of the Deferred Action for Parents of U.S. citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) is temporarily on hold, after a U.S. District Court in Texas issued a preliminary injunction based on the Administrative Procedures Act (APA). The agency was scheduled to begin accepting DACA applications on the expanded basis, beginning today.

The decision does not come as a surprise to those following the issue closely. The State of Texas picked the forum for the suit, and did so with forethought. It is somewhat of a surprise that that the decision was based on the APA’s rulmaking process, rather than on a determination of a constitutional overreach by the President. The U.S. Government will appeal, and the matter could take some time to reach judicial closure.  The case could end up in the Supreme Court eventually. If so, then it will be a matter of swing votes, as Supreme Court decisions usually are. In the meantime, DHS and the White House have said they will not move forward with the expanded DACA and new DAPA programs.

Congress continues to avoid dealing with the immigration issue. The House of Representatives latest plan is to threaten to defund Department of Homeland Security over the President’s executive action. Pundits and campaign experts now will analyze the political fallout of these non-events for Republicans and Democrats, as each party positions itself for elections next year. This is how you don’t get things done in DC.

Here is the press release issued in response to the decision by DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson:

Feb. 17, 2015

Contact: DHS Press Office, (202) 282-8010


I strongly disagree with Judge Hanen’s decision to temporarily enjoin implementation of Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) and expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). The Department of Justice will appeal that temporary injunction; in the meantime, we recognize we must comply with it.

Accordingly, the Department of Homeland Security will not begin accepting requests for the expansion of DACA tomorrow, February 18, as originally planned. Until further notice, we will also suspend the plan to accept requests for DAPA.

The Department of Justice, legal scholars, immigration experts and even other courts have said that our actions are well within our legal authority. Our actions will also benefit the economy and promote law enforcement. We fully expect to ultimately prevail in the courts, and we will be prepared to implement DAPA and expanded DACA once we do.

It is important to emphasize what the District Court’s order does not affect.

The Court’s order does not affect the existing DACA. Individuals may continue to come forward and request initial grant of DACA or renewal of DACA pursuant to the guidelines established in 2012.

Nor does the Court’s order affect this Department’s ability to set and implement enforcement priorities. The priorities established in my November 20, 2014 memorandum entitled “Policies for the Apprehension, Detention and Removal of Undocumented Immigrants” remain in full force and effect. Pursuant to those enforcement priorities, we continue to prioritize public safety, national security, and border security. I am pleased that an increasing percentage of removals each year are of those convicted of crimes. I am also pleased that, due in large part to our investments in and prioritization of border security, apprehensions at the southern border – a large indicator of total attempts to cross the border illegally — are now at the lowest levels in years.

For more information, visit www.dhs.gov.

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Expanded DACA Scheduled for February 18th, Absent Court Intervention

February 13th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services is scheduled to begin accepting a wider range of applicants under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program on February 18th. The expansion of the program is one of the measures included in President Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration. Work authorization will now be available to qualifying persons of any age who entered the U.S. before the age of 16 and have been in the U.S. continuously since January 1st, 2010. The temporary period of work authorization granted will now also be extended from two years to three years.

The program may be halted by lawsuit, however, as more than half of U.S. states are involved with a lawsuit to halt the executive action. Texas is leading the charge of 26 states against the Executive Action, claiming it is an exercise in executive overreach. The Washington State Attorney General has filed an amicus brief arguing the opposite, and was joined by 12 states. So, the possibility is real that a court may issue an order to halt the agency from acting on the President’s program, at least temporarily.

The program is set to expand even further in May. The government currently projects that it will begin accepting applications in mid-to-late May of 2015 for undocumented individuals living in the United States who are the parent of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident and who (1) have lived continuously in the U.S. since January 1st, 2010; (2) had on November 20, 2014, a son or daughter who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident; and (3) who is not an enforcement priority for removal under certain published guidelines.

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New Enrollment Center for NEXUS in Birch Bay

February 4th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

Here’s a press release from CBP, issued on January 29th, announcing a new NEXUS enrollment center in Birch Bay, just south of the border in NW Washington:

BLAINE, Wash. – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) today announced the relocation and expansion of a joint “Trusted Traveler” Enrollment Center (EC) in the Birch Bay Square business center, Blaine, Washington. The Enrollment Center is designed to make obtaining a NEXUS border-crossing card easy and convenient for nearby residents on both sides of the border. Today’s announcement came at a commemorative ribbon-cutting ceremony held at the new Enrollment Center.

NEXUS is a joint CBP/CBSA program that offers pre-screened, approved travelers dedicated lanes at selected ports faster processing permitting border agencies to concentrate their efforts on potentially higher-risk persons. NEXUS was established in 2002 as part of the Shared Border Accord, a partnership between the United States and Canada. Over one million U.S and Canadian citizens are currently enrolled in the NEXUS program.

“Border security remains our utmost priority,” said CBP’s Michele James, Director-Field Operations, Seattle Field Office. “Facilitating legitimate cross-border travel is also a major priority. The NEXUS program reduces border wait times for trusted travelers allowing us to focus our enforcement resources where they are needed.”

“As partners, we work closely with USCBP to ensure the security of our shared borders,” said CBSA Regional Director General, Pacific Region, Roslyn MacVicar. “It is through continuous collaboration and diligent efforts on behalf of all partners, that the NEXUS program continues to grow and expand.”
The new Enrollment Center is located on Interstate 5 (Exit 270) within 10 minutes driving time of the U.S./Canadian border at 8115 Birch Bay Square Street. The expanded facility and additional CBP/CBSA staffing will provide the ability to double the number of conditionally-approved applications currently processed. The NEXUS application process begins online with one application, interested persons may obtain more information and apply at the Global Online Enrollment System (GOES) website.

On June 1, 2009, the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI) rules took effect requiring all U.S. and Canadian citizens to present proof of citizenship and identity in a single document at land and sea ports of entry. Trusted traveler cards, such as NEXUS, SENTRI, Global Entry and FAST, are considered WHTI-compliant documents and are accepted for cross-border travel. NEXUS pre-approved travelers crossing the U.S./Canada border receive the added benefits of expedited marine reporting and access to NEXUS kiosks at designated Canadian airports. A five year NEXUS membership card costs $50 (USD).

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High Skilled Immigration Reforms Proposed: The Immigration Innovation Act of 2015

January 20th, 2015 by W. Scott Railton

Last week a bipartisan group of Senators introduced the Immigration Innovation Act of 2015 (S. 153). Commonly referred to as the “I-Squared” Act, this bill provides critical reforms needed in the area of high-skilled immigration.

The bill includes the following provisions:

• Raises the H-1B cap from 65,000 to 115,000 and creates market demand provisions for the cap to go up (but not above 195,000) or down (but not below 115,000), based on usage.

• Removes the existing 20,000 cap on the U.S. advanced degree exemption for H-1Bs.

• Authorizes employment for dependent spouses of H-1B visa holders.

• Recognizes that foreign students at U.S. colleges and universities have “dual intent” so they aren’t penalized for wanting to stay in the U.S. after graduation.

• Recaptures green card numbers that were approved by Congress in previous years but were not used, and continues to do so going forward.

• Exempts dependents of employment-based immigrant visa recipients, U.S. STEM advanced degree holders, persons with extraordinary ability, and outstanding professors and researchers from the employment-based green card cap.

• Eliminates annual per-country limits for employment-based visa petitioners and adjusts per-country caps for family-based immigrant visas.

• Establishes a grant program using funds from new fees added to H-1Bs and employment-based green cards to promote STEM education and worker retraining.

The bill was introduced by Senators Hatch (R-UT), Klobuchar (D-MN), Rubio (R-FL), Coons (D-DE), Flake (R-AZ), and Blumenthal (D-CT).

If passed–and we all know that is a big “If”–these measures will be a move in the right direction for the improvement of high skilled immigration in the U.S.

The current base H-1B cap number is completely out of touch with U.S. business needs, as we see every April 1st. Cap demand does change year to year, and during the Great Recession, the annual quota was slowly depleted, but last year less than half of applicants were picked in the April lottery. Uncapping the Master’s degree program will be a boost for employers and higher education. The Dual Intent change brings the law in to sync with every day realities.

More can be done. The arbitrary six year cap on H-1B time creates all sorts of unnecessary chaos for some beneficiaries who wish to pursue permanent residence. Labor mobility should be improved, as persons can get stuck in their job due to a long-standing application. Innovation and entrepreneurship should be further encouraged in immigration laws, though use of the E, O, H-1B, and permanent resident categories. While STEM profession are desirable, immigration should focus more broadly on the higher educated. Reducing the cost of applications will encourage greater high skilled investment. Some type of citizen’s suit provision, or money-back guarantee, for arbitrary and capricious agency decisions might lead to more predictability from USCIS. Unlikely, for sure, but some measures are needed to call DHS agencies to account for the expensive red tape they sometimes needlessly foister on businesses. Filing fees have increased significantly over the years, and businesses have some reasonable expectations associated with the payment of these significant costs.

With the Republicans majorities in the Senate and House, there is a decent chance that legislative action on immigration will be taken in a piece-meal fashion, focusing on individual sector interests. If that happens, there’s also a decent chance high skilled immigration proposals such as the I-Squared Act will receive attention.

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