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So far msm@hammondlawgroup.com has created 121 blog entries.

April VB released

By |2008-03-14T13:15:00+00:00March 14th, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

The Department of State has just released the April Visa Bulletin. EB1 - All CurrentEB2 - All Current; except India and China are Dec 01, 2003EB3 - July 1, 2005 for all countries except India and Mexico (Oct 1 2001); China (Feb 8, 2003).Other Workers - All March 1, 2002We're pleased to see some movement in the EB3 dates and the reintroduction of an Indian EB2 date. HLG recently explained why the dates have begun to move forward.

H-1 cap fast approaching

By |2008-03-12T15:09:00+00:00March 12th, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

This is a reminder for all H-1 eligible occupations -- e.g. PTs, PTs, Pharmacists, etc. You must file for your H-1 on April 1 if you wish to try and enter the US in 2008.Not all occupations require a state license or Visa Screen. HLG has developed some clever H-1 strategies for H-1 approval for occupations that ordinarily require licenses (such as PTs and OTs).For more information about the looming H-1 cap, please also visit our sister Blog: www.h1cap.com.

HLG in DC

By |2008-02-29T14:32:00+00:00February 29th, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

HLG is in Washington DC today working with a team of staffing companies, the CTIHS, the lobbyists, and other aligned interests. Where we are so far:1. Last spring/summer, we were counseled to hold off on lobbying for additional Schedule A visas in light of the proposed Comprehensive Immigration Reform. That effort untimely failed in the Senate.2. Last fall our effort was one of only two positive immigration efforts that were passed by a house of Congress; namely a proposal to revive the EX Visa category, a category exclusively for professional nurses and physical therapists, and their immediate family members. 3. Our effort then turned to the House. Unfortunately we ran out of time; the calendar year ended before we could muster enough support in the House.4. We have spent the first two months of 2008 working with House leadership in order to find a sponsor and champion for our legislation. That effort continues and is the subject of today’s meeting. We are optimistic that we will have both in the near term.

Why did the EB3 dates move forward?

By |2008-02-22T15:36:00+00:00February 22nd, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

As every reader of the HLG Healthcare Immigration Blog is surely aware, the EB3 Visa Bulletin dates just leapt forward, which is great news. Essentially the reason that the DOS did this is because the US fiscal year is nearly half over (the fiscal year runs Oct 1- September 30), and the DOS is concerned that all of the visas will not be used. It was this phenomenon – lack of using all visas – that caused the Visa Gate scandal of 2007. By moving the dates ahead now, instead of waiting for June or July like last year, the DOS hopes to avoid having to over-progress the dates this summer.By way of background, there are two ways that visas can be claimed -- (i) domestically via the I-485 Adjustment of Status and (ii) internationally via the DOS' Consulate system. Ideally the US government wants the visas to be used on a priority date basis, which is to say that it shouldn't matter if the I-140 is filed for an AOS or CP; the approval of the immigrant visa should be the same.The USCIS, which is the agency that works the AOS cases, has likely indicated to the DOS that it cannot process as many cases as necessary. Therefore by moving the dates aggressively ahead, it is allowing the Consulates to use more of the visas (which is good for the PTs and RNs!).Note however that Section D of the Visa Bulletin in Section D says that if the USCIS improves its processing of AOS cases, the DOS may re-retrogress the EB3 date. On the other hand if the USCIS continues to be unable to timely process AOS cases, there is a chance sometime this spring for the dates to continue to move forward.None of this reduces or eliminates the [...]

Well that was quick…March Visa Bulletin released

By |2008-02-12T19:08:00+00:00February 12th, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

Within an hour of our last post, the DOS' Visa Bulletin was released. As expected, some EB categories greatly moved forward; notably processing is now available for All Other Countries and the Philippines who filed prior to January 1, 2005.EB1 - all current, as usual.EB2 - all current, except China (Dec 1, 2003), and India (U).EB3 - all countries (Jan 1, 2005), China (Dec 1, 2002), India (Aug 1, 2001), Mexico (May 1, 2001), Philippines (Jan 1, 2005).

3 items of note

By |2008-02-12T15:08:00+00:00February 12th, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

1. HLG has heard that the DOS’s Visa Bulletin in either March or April will aggressively promote many EB categories including EB3. While this would be welcome, it doesn’t take away from urgency that a Schedule A visa bill is passed.2. HLG’s February MMM has been published. If you would like to subscribe, you can do so here.3. The DOS recently announced an increase to the NVC fee. The fee has been increased by $20, and now stands at $355. With the $45 security surcharge, the total NVC fee is $400.

3 items of note

By |2008-02-12T10:08:00+00:00February 12th, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

1. HLG has heard that the DOS’s Visa Bulletin in either March or April will aggressively promote many EB categories including EB3. While this would be welcome, it doesn’t take away from urgency that a Schedule A visa bill is passed.2. HLG’s February MMM has been published. If you would like to subscribe, you can do so here.3. The DOS recently announced an increase to the NVC fee. The fee has been increased by $20, and now stands at $355. With the $45 security surcharge, the total NVC fee is $400.

Lobbying in January

By |2008-02-01T15:55:00+00:00February 1st, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

The CTIHS is continuing to press Congress for increased visa numbers for healthcare workers. As readers may recall, last fall, the CTIHS, along with partners, was able to get the Senate to pass a bill authorizing 61,000 visas for healthcare workers. Unfortunately that bill failed to win House approval.This year the lobbying effort has continued with a focus on talking with House members. Several meetings happened in January and we’re optimistic that something can be done in the near term. The biggest hurdle may be that the Presidential race is going to suck up a lot of the politicians’ time in 2008.

Visa Bulletin Feb 08

By |2008-01-10T13:49:00+00:00January 10th, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

The Department of State has just released its February 08 Visa Bulletin. Some slight changes, but nothing significantly different than January. The major bad news is that India EB2 is now retrogressed and will remain retrogressed until October 1, 2008.

CTIHS Meetings: Plan for 08

By |2008-01-08T15:33:00+00:00January 8th, 2008|Categories: Green Cards|

Quick update on the CTIHS meetings. We’re still pushing hard for an amendment this year, ideally in the 1Q of 2008. It may be very difficult in light of the Presidential politics that are certain to dominate the landscape.That having been said, most of the big staffing , law firms, and our allies in healthcare have re-committed to continuing the push and are pledging substantial time and money to the effort in early 2008.We don’t know for sure what will happen in 2008, but we do know that without this re-commitment it will not happen.Meetings have already been set up with the team of lobbyists and with Congressional staffers. Indeed, the first Congressional meeting happened yesterday, which should give everyone an idea just how committed we are to the legislation. We’re coming right out of the gate.We are always looking for additional staffing companies, recruiters, and health care facilities to join the cause. If you are interested, please email Chris Musillo. For details on the program for 08, please see this.

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