New LCA and Third-Party Placements

The U.S. Department of Labor has revised the ETA Form 9035, Labor Condition Application (LCA). Although the revised form was recently approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), it has not been formally announced when it will be fully implemented. Important changes to the LCA include requiring employers to indicate whether the H-1B, H-1B1 or E-3 worker will be placed at a third-party worksite and disclosing the name and address of the third-party organization, and indicating the number of foreign workers at a each worksite listed in the LCA. There are also additional requirements for H-1B dependent and willful violators.

DHS Sets Forth Its Plan To Comply With The TPS Preliminary Injunction

On October 31, 2018, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a Notice in the Federal Register summarizing the steps it will take to comply with the preliminary injunction that blocked the termination of TPS for immigrants from El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Sudan. The government has stated that it will comply with the injunction while their appeal is pending. It will automatically extend employment authorization and status for TPS recipients from Nicaragua and Sudan through April 2, 2019. As El Salvador and Haiti’s TPS period does not expire until next year, further extensions have not been stipulated for those TPS recipients. If the court’s injunction is not reversed or invalidated before April 2, 2019, DHS will issue announce an additional nine month extension for TPS beneficiaries from El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua and Sudan.

I-751 Receipt Notices Delay

In June 2018, USCIS announced there was a delay in processing the initial data entry related to I-751 Removal of Conditions on Residence applications. USCIS completed data entry and receipt issuance on October 1, 2018. If you submitted a Form I-751 to the California Service Center between May 1 and September 9, 2018, you should receive your Receipt Notice by end of month. If your two-year Lawful Permanent Resident card has expired and you have not received your Receipt Notice, you should make an appointment at a USCIS field office along with evidence of your timely filing.

USCIS Updates Rule Making Agenda Regarding Termination of Employment Authorization For H-4 Dependents

DHS has updated its Fall 2018 Regulatory Agenda by providing an estimated publication date of November 2018 and including an anticipated cost and benefit analysis to the proposed rule that will remove employment authorization eligibility of H-4 dependent spouses. The proposed rule was expected to be published in February 2018 but was delayed. The publication of the proposed rule will not automatically invalidate currently valid employment authorization documents (EAD) for H-4 spouses. Once a final rule, an effective date for termination of H-4 EAD validity will be announced by DHS. Until that time, H-4 employment authorization cards remain valid. DHS anticipates that the termination of H-4 employment authorization will reduce costs of production (operations) of EAD cards for H-4 nonimmigrants while acknowledging that employers may incur labor turnover costs.

USCIS to Expand Information Services Modernization Program to Key Locations

USCIS will expand its Information Services Modernization Program to key field offices on November 13, 2018, beginning with the Detroit Field Office and the five offices in the Los Angeles District. Field offices in the Newark, Great Lakes, and San Francisco districts will implement the program during the first quarter of fiscal year (FY) 2019. USCIS anticipates expanding the program to all remaining field offices by the end of FY 2019. The Information Services Modernization Program will phase out the current self-scheduling InfoPass appointment system in an effort to encourage applicants to use USCIS online information resources to view general how-to information and check case status through the USCIS Contact Center. Through the Information Services Modernization Program, when an applicant requires in-person assistance, the USCIS Contact Center will help schedule an appointment without having to search for available timeslots.