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Showing posts from March, 2013

USCIS and Why You Need an Immigration Attorney

Being an immigration attorney is a joy.  I absolutely love what I do.  Helping people navigate the nightmare that is our current immigration system, deal with an entrenched bureaucracy, and advocate for my client's legal and human rights are all part of a day's work.  Being part of changing people's lives for the better and helping make the American Dream begin is the ultimate reward.   But, not everyone likes what an immigration attorney does.  In fact, it appears that the USCIS is at the forefront of not liking immigration attorneys very much!

As the result of recent litigation by the American Immigration Council, seeking through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) copies of USCIS training materials, a little gem was produced which goes a long way toward explaining USCIS hostility toward immigration attorneys.  In a PowerPoint presentation entitled "USCIS Adjudicator Interaction with Private Attorneys and Representatives" USCIS takes what can only be called a…

What Employers Need to Know About The New Form I-9

Interview with the Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce discussing the new version of Form I-9.
On March 8, 2013, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that effective immediately, all NEW hires by U.S. employers should fill out the new version of Form I-9, which is identified in the lower, left-hand corner of the form with the label “Form I-9 03/08/13 N”.Starting May 8, 2013, use of the new version of the form is mandatory.

[We previously reported that employers must start using the new form on May 7, 2013.  However, USCIS has now clarified that the correct date is May 8, 2013.  On March 20, 2013, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) reported the following:  The AILA Verification and Documentation Committee took note of the conflicting information contained in the March 13, 2013 Federal Register notice introducing the revised I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification Form and contacted the USCIS Verification Division to confirm the effective date.  Accor…

Why SB 160 Must Pass -- To Restore Some Sanity to HB 87

SB 160 fixes the problems caused by HB 87
Section 1 makes the reporting requirements easier and more efficient for public employers.
Section 2 makes compliance by businesses subject to HB 87’s E-Verify requirements easier and more efficient
Section 3 makes compliance reporting under HB 87’s license renewal requirements easier and more efficient
Section 4 allows for electronic maintenance of the records required under HB 87, thus ease the burden on public employers
Section 5 properly updates the definition of Public Benefits under state law to make it date specific.
Section 6 wisely exempts all lawful presence verification requirements from any contract with a public entity with a worth under $10,000.
Section 7 aids the Secretary of State and other public entities by exempting from in-person, original document verification for licenses and public benefits after the initial demonstration of such documents. 
Section 8 makes reporting requirements easier and more efficient for public employers

Why HB 125 Must Be Defeated

HB 125 is Bad for Business, Bad for the Economy, Bad for Immigrants and Bad for Georgia.
Section 1 expands HB 87 (Georgia’s Anti-Immigration law) by modifying its “Definitions” of “contractor” and to which entities HB 87 applies
Section 2 extends HB 87’s E-Verify Requirement and Future IMAGE requirement to every employer in Georgia
Section 2 expands the scope of the mandate of the un-oversighted Immigration Enforcement Review Board
Section 3 modifies and increases the mandatory application of E-Verify to Georgia Employers
Section 3 increases compliance costs for State Agencies, Counties and Municipalities
Section 4, while limiting HB 87’s compliance requirement to NEW licenses, requires additional compliance efforts by businesses and state agencies, counties and municipalities
Section 5 substantially modifies the penalties imposable by the Immigration Enforcement Review Board
Section 6 eliminates the Federal and Attorney General definitions of “Public Benefits” and greatly expands what are p…

The New Form I-9 and How to Properly Use It!

On March 8, 2013, USCIS announced that all U.S. employers should begin using Form I-9 [with a revision date of “(Rev. 03/08/13)N”)] to comply with their employment eligibility verification responsibilities for NEW employees. The revision date is located in the bottom left-hand corner of the form.

Here is a PDF version of the new Form I-9.  After May 7, 2013, all prior versions of Form I-9 can no longer be used and employers who fail to use the new Form I-9 will be subject to all penalties, as enforced by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).

The key revisions to the Form I-9 include:
Adding data fields, including the employee’s foreign passport information (if applicable) and telephone and e-mail addresses.Improving the form’s instructions. Revising the layout of the form, expanding the form from one to two pages (not including the form instructions and the List of Acceptable Documents) with the employee filling out the first page and t…

Georgia Anti-Immigration Legislation Is Back--Stop HB 125!

Two months, at the start of the legislative session, Representative Hightower sought community support for a bill to “fix” a key problem with the poorly written and nightmarishly shortsighted HB 87, specifically as it applied to the Secretary of State, and to counties and municipalities.  Many community organizations told Representative Hightower that they would be happy to publicly support what became HB 32.  HB 32 was intended to be a bill which reinstated the ability of the Secretary of State to renew licenses of all types in a much more efficient manner than dictated by the terms of HB 87.  There was no talk of, nor apparent desire to further enhance the anti-immigration reputation that Georgia had burnished for itself in HB 87.  However, a substitute bill, HB 125, has replaced HB 32, and has been hijacked, by whom it is unclear, and now is another anti-immigration vehicle destined to careen Georgia off the path of normalcy restored by the federal court decision striking down the…