New rule extends employment term for international STEM students

May 09, 2016 0 COMMENTS

by Elaine Young

The rules affecting how long international students in certain fields can work in the United States without changing their visa status will change on May 10.

Currently, when international students in F-1 visa status graduate with a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctorate from a U.S. school, they can work for one year, in a period called Optional Practical Training (OPT), in a job related to their major field of study. That training period is being extended for international students with science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) degrees from U.S. schools.

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Employers should continue using expired Form I-9 until new version is available

April 01, 2016 0 COMMENTS

The current revision of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Form I-9 expired March 31. However, USCIS has instructed employers to continue using this version of the form until a new revision is approved.

Meanwhile, revisions to Form I-9 have been proposed, but the new form cannot be finalized and adopted until the public has had the opportunity to submit comments on the changes.

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H-1B visa deadline looms

March 25, 2013 0 COMMENTS

by Elaine Young

Employers wanting to hire foreign workers through the H-1B visa program need to be ready to file petitions with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on April 1. U.S. businesses use the H-1B program to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise in specialized fields. The first possible start date for most H-1B employees is the first day of the federal fiscal year, October 1. Therefore, petitions submitted on April 1, 2013, will apply to the 2014 federal fiscal year, which begins October 1, 2013.

Here’s an overview of what to consider before April 1 and some information about how the H-1B process may change in the future.

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USCIS issues revised Form I-9

March 08, 2013 0 COMMENTS

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has published a revised Form I-9, and employers should begin using it right away.

The new form went into effect today. The revision date of the form is printed in the lower left corner. Employers are encouraged to begin using the new form now, but forms dated February 2, 2009, and August 7, 2009, will be accepted until the effective date of the revised form—May 7, 2013.

All employers are required to complete a Form I-9 for each employee hired in the United States. The purpose of the form is to verify employees’ identity and employment authorization. Employers shouldn’t complete the revised Form I-9 for current employees if a properly completed form is already on file.

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New E-Verify Requirements Going into Effect in North Carolina

September 19, 2011 0 COMMENTS

By Richard L. Rainey

A new North Carolina state law soon will require use of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ (USCIS) E-Verify system to check if workers are legally entitled to work in the United States.

Under the new law, signed by Governor Bev Perdue on June 23, all employers in North Carolina that employ 25 or more workers eventually will be required to use the system. The new law will take effect at different times based on an employer’s size and type: read more…

U.S. District Court Upholds E-Verify System

August 27, 2009 1 COMMENTS

This week, a Maryland U.S. District Court ruled in favor of the U.S. government in a lawsuit challenging the legality of the E-Verify system (Chamber of Commerce of the United States v. Napolitano). This means that beginning September 8, 2009, federal contractors and subcontractors will be required to use the E-Verify system to ensure their employees are legally authorized to work in the United States. The requirement is designed to stop federal contractors and subcontractors from hiring illegal immigrants.

The E-Verify system is a federal government online database program that allows employers to verify employment eligibility by electronically comparing employee information taken from the Employment Eligibility Verification Form (Form I-9) against the records in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Social Security Administration (SSA) databases. The system, which facilitates compliance with federal immigration laws and is currently voluntary for employers, is jointly operated by the DHS and the SSA and is overseen by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

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Form I-9 Remains Valid Beyond June 30, 2009

June 26, 2009 0 COMMENTS

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today (June 26) that the Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 (Rev. 02/02/09) currently on the USCIS website will continue to be valid for use beyond June 30, 2009. The agency has requested that the Office of Management and Budget approve the continued use of the current  Form I-9. While this request is pending, the Form I-9 (Rev. 02/02/09) will not expire. USCIS will update the form when the extension is approved. Employers will be able to use either the Form I-9 with the new revision date or the Form I-9 with the 02/02/09 revision date at the bottom of the form.