Friday, July 29, 2011

The Vandeventer Black Immigration Law Group: Immigration Art on campus! Photos from Staten Island, NY and Baltimore, Maryland!

The Immigration Law Group at Vandeventer Black offers a full range of services nationwide, including:

(1) assisting international students with the transition from "student visa status" to an authorized temporary work status; obtaining authorized temporary work status for business men and women and international students; managing the permanent resident ("green card") application process for green cards based on family relationships, employment, or -- based on winning the DV (Diversity) Green Card Lottery! We also assist those immigrants who wish to seek U.S. Citizenship.

(2) We provide a full range of services related to deportation and removal cases; and the analysis of the consequences of criminal behavior on an individual's immigration status in the United States. Our group will make the very, very best out of a potentially very bad situation.

(3) The Immigration Law Group at Vandeventer Black was establish over 25 years ago. We started by helping international students on campus, and have grown to represent a wide range of clients across a wide spectrum -- from large corporations to small businesses; from college students to business leaders; from newlyweds beginning a life together in the United States to naturalized U.S. Citizen adult children sponsoring their aging parents for permanent residency.

We have handled cases in Norfolk, Virginia and all over the world. We have attended interviews in cities like Atlanta, GA; Detroit, MI; Philadelphia, PA; Washington, DC; Memphis, TN; Newark, NJ; Baltimore, MD; and Durham, NC. We have helped clients at U.S. Embassies in France, Vietnam, India, England, Ireland, Israel, Canada, Germany, China, and Brazil -- to name a few.

But no matter where we are, and no matter what we are doing, we will always remember where we started: with international students on campus -- first at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia, and then at colleges and universities all across the United States. Below is a scrapbook of some recent photos of attorney Art Serratelli (better known as "Immigration Art" on campus, and on Facebook, and even on Google!) doing one of the many things we enjoy -- meeting with students and helping untangle the seemingly endless web of U.S. immigration rules and regulations that could, perhaps, stand between those students and the American Dream (as they, and their families, envision it and pursue it). America still is that shining city on a hill. We see it reflected in the eager, hopeful faces of students each and every day.

Scrapbook Photos

If you have any questions or concerns about U.S. Immigration Law, please contact the Vandeventer Black Immigration Law Group at 757-446-8600 or feel free to contact Immigration Art directly on his cell at 757-235-4624.

We're here if you need us.

Monday, July 18, 2011

H-1B Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 Cap Season -- 7/15/2011 UPDATE BY USCIS

The H-1B Program

U.S. businesses use the H-1B program to employ foreign workers in specialty occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise in specialized fields, such as scientists, business managers, engineers, financial planners, social workers, or computer programmers. This is a popular work authorization status (visa category) because any international worker with a MINIMUM of a 4 year college degree (or the equivalent), from any college anywhere in the world, may obtain permission to work for a U.S. Company on U.S. soil in the H-1B category. The "4 year college degree" requirement is what makes the occupation a "specialty" occupation. Also, the 4 year college degree must be required by, or strongly related to, the job being offered to the international worker. Put another way, if the worker is hired by your organization in the normal course of business, then, in all likelihood, that worker will be able to obtain the H-1B work authorization.
For more information about the H-1B program, follow this link to a terrific article from The Economist!
There is one small catch. The H-1B category is limited to 85,000 new workers for the entire United States of America per federal government fiscal year. This limit means that the amount -- 85,000 -- is the maximum number of slots available for every international worker seeking employment in the United States in any given year. The bulk of these "cap -covered" or "quota-covered" H-1Bs are obtained by international students who have been educated in U.S. Colleges and Universities. For example, Silicon Valley, and (as another example) science labs in all graduate programs across the United States, have H-1B workers as far as the eye can see!
USCIS Determines if an H-1B Petition is Subject to the FY 2012 Cap
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) counts the current "cap-covered" H-1B amount of 85,00 for the federal government fiscal year which begins on 10/01/2011 and ends on 09/30/2012 (FY 2012). The 85,000 total number of H-1Bs available are divided into two pools: one pool of 65,000; another of 20,000.
USCIS determines whether a petition is subject to the 65,000 H-1B numerical limitation (the “cap” as it is popularly known). Some petitions are exempt from the cap under the advanced degree exemption provided to the first 20,000 petitions filed for a beneficiary who has obtained a U.S. master’s degree or higher. THE H-!B "CAP COUNT" AS OF 07/15/2011:
H-1B UPDATE (7/15/2011)
20,500 of the 65,000 have been approved by, or are pending at, USCIS
12,800 of the 20,000 have been approved by, or are pending at, USCIS
33,300 of the 85,000 GRAND TOTAL have been approved by, or are pending at, USCIS.

For further details, follow this link to the official USCIS website.
Feel free to contact an attorney in the Vandeventer Black LLP Immigration Law Group at 757-446-8600 for more information.

This posting is based primarily on the H-B Cap information published by USCIS at

Friday, July 15, 2011

Gay Couples in Legal Limbo with Immigration

The July 14 Los Angeles Times has a good article about gay couples who are placed in legal limbo in the immigration process. Married same-sex couples find that their commitment has no standing in the eyes of immigration agents when one partner isn't a citizen. The Obama Administration suggests that these cases are a low priority for removal, but that provides little comfort and no guarantee against deportation.

Read the full article here.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

ICE to Allow Some Undocumented Immgrants to Stay.

Thousand of undocumented foreigners could qualify for more lenient treatment under an ICE policy change says Miami A memo issued June 17, 2011 by John Morton, the ICE director, laid down new guidlines that could enable immigrants to remain in the country. The memo, for the first time, permits ICE trial attorneys to exercise prosecutorial discretion to dismiss charges against foreign nationals facing deportation.

Read the article and the Morton memo.