Saturday, October 31, 2015

I-140 and H1B Portability Under Act 21

Generally, an lien in H1B status may work for up to six years. Before obtaining another round of H1B status, the alien must return to his home country for one year. Yet Act 21 gives some H1B holders opportunities to extend H1b status beyond 6-year limit. There are two common scenarios:  

1) If the H-1B holder has filed either a Labor Certification application
or an I-140 petition 365 days before reaching the six-year limitation AND the LC or I-140 has not been denied, the H-1B visa holder may extend his or her status one year at a time beyond the six-year limitation.  There is no upper limit on total years in H-1B extension under such a circumstance as long as the immigration process is still ongoing; 

2)  If an H-1B visa holder has an approved I-140 petition AND the immigrant visa number is not available to him/her the H-1B visa holder may extend his/her status in three-year intervals beyond the 6-year limit. There is no 365-day requirement for this circumstance.

On the other note, H-1B Not Limited to the Permanent Residency Petitioner Employer. That is to say, H1B holder can receive a new H1B visa as long as the sponsor is willing to continue to sponsor the immigration petition. However, he/she needs to come back to work for his/her PERM sponsoring employer either during I-485 or after his/her green card is approved.

I-140 Portability under Act 21. 

Where the labor certification is approved, the I-140 petition is approved and the I-485 application has been pending for 180 days or longer, there is nothing that the previous employer can do to stop the new employer from using the underlying labor certification and I-140 approvals.  At this point, the foreign worker retains his right to the labor certification and I-140 petition and the new employer need not file either.  The new employer need only explain how the new job is "the same, or substantially similar" to the job described in the labor certification application.  The new job does not need to be in the same city, the same state, or at the same salary as the job listed in the underlying labor certification so long as the new job is the same, or substantially similar to the old job.  

Before the I-485 application to adjust status has been pending for 180 days, the earlier employer may withdraw the approved I-140 petition.  If the employer does so, the employee may not use the I-140 petition as the basis for an I-485 application and if the employee has a pending I-485 application, USCIS will almost certainly deny it.

Friday, October 2, 2015



当然雇佣无照承包商是很有诱惑力的, 因为可能在较大程度上降低成本。但是,你准备好了吗?如果将可能出现的后果都考虑进去, 雇佣无照承包商有可能导致最终成本更高。

首先,在大多数的州内,雇用无牌承包商是非法的。如果承包商有专业执照, 那么工程中他所受到的所有的伤害以及分包商的伤害都是该承包商自己负责; 但是,如果承包商没有执照,承包商和分包商便成为房主的雇员,房主要负责为他们支付医疗费用。 不用说, 医疗费用可能会非常高。


因此,为了保护自己的利益,你应该雇佣有专业执照的承包商。 其实要核查承包商是否有执照,只是几分钟的事情。幸运的是,大多数州都提供网上数据库,方便查询。

Why Not Hiring Unlicensed Home Contractors Is Critical?

Considering remodeling your home? You must know that most of the professionals who will work on your remodeling project need to be properly licensed.

Sure it is tempting to hire unlicensed contractors for the sake of lower cost. But brace yourself, with all things considered, overall cost of having work done by unlicensed contractors could end up being significantly higher. 

First, in most states, it is illegal to hire an unlicensed contractor.  When the contractor is licensed, any injury to the contractor or to any subcontractors is the responsibility of the contractor. But, if the contractor is not licensed, the contractor and any subcontractors become employees of the homeowner, who is responsible for on-site injuries to them.  Medical bills can be extremely high.

In addition, your home insurer may not be willing to reimburse you for damage caused by the negligent work of an unlicensed contractor.

It’s prudent to assure yourself that your contractors are properly licensed. It only takes a few minutes online to check. Fortunately, most states maintain easily accessible websites listing whether a particular individual or company has such a license, the licensing status of your contractors whether you’re serving as your own general contractor or letting a general contractor supervise the work.

EB1-C 适合企业家的一种绿卡

很多人都非常熟悉的签证类型L1。许多国际公司在美国设立子公司后获得L1。其实,L1背后真正的赢家是EB1移民签证,即绿卡。EB1有三个子类EB1-A,“非凡能力”的外籍人士,EB1-B: 杰出教授或研究人员,和EB1-C,被派往美国的高管和外国公司的经理。 

我们在这里讨论EB1-C。简单地说,可以申请EB1-C 的人士是那些被派往美国公司的1)在过去三年中至少一年在外国关联公司工作; 2)他们的工作职位在调职前后都是管理人员或高管。当然要得到EB1-C 绿卡,申请公司还要满足其他的要求,诸如:


当然,和其他所有移民申请或应用程序一样,要满足这些标准不是通过简单的就可以做到。 申请人必须承担证明自己满足条件的义务。具体来说, 申请人必须提供大量的充足的证据来证明他们所做的任何陈述。 例如,移民法律赋予的管理位置的非常严格的定义。 申请人必须通过呈交大量辅助文件, 才能满足审查人员满意。 

EB1-C: Green Card for Entreprenuers

A lot of people are very familiar with the visa type L1. Many international companies set up subsidiaries in U.S to obtain L1. Actually, the real winner behind L1 is EB1 immigration visa, i.e, green card. There are three sub-categories of EB1: EB1-A, for foreign nationals who either have "extraordinary abilities", EB1-B, for outstanding professors or researchers, and EB1-C, for some executives and managers of foreign companies who are transferred to the US”. 

We will talk about EB1-C here. In a nutshell, those executives or managers of foreign companies who are transferred to the U.S and who 1) have been employed, during the last three years, for at least one year outside of the US 2)  in a managerial position in the same company that is going to employ them in the US or in a related company can apply. Of course there are other requirements such as: 

1) The petitioning employer must be a U.S. employer.
2) The employer must have been doing business for at least 1 year, as an affiliate, a subsidiary, or as the same corporation that employed the beneficiary abroad.[1]
3) The beneficiary must be employed in a managerial or executive position.

Of course, as all other immigration petition or application, none of these standards can be met by simply stating so. Petitioner must bear the burden of prove, specifically, the petitioner must provide preponderant evidence to prove each claim they make. For instance, immigration law gives managerial position a very stringent position, a company cannot satisfy the requirement by calling a person manager or director, etc. Substantial paperwork is called for to prove the beneficiary is indeed a manager or executive to the satisfaction of adjudicators.  

Where EB5 Pilot Program is heading…

EB5 Pilot Program was enacted in 1992 to allow foreign investment in a pre-approved US companies (so called regional center). Since the start, the program has to be reauthorized every 2-3 years depending on its previous version.  The current EB5 pilot program is to sunset on Sept. 30, 2015. 

June 3, 2015,  A bill intended to extend, modify and reform the EB5 program was introduced and referred to Committee. Among all the modifications this bill is proposing,  the followings are worthy of great attention: 

  1. Current minimum investment for Non-TEA areas is $1 million, the bill, if signed into law, will change it to be $1.2 million, whereas minimum investment for TEA areas is currently $500,000, ( almost all EB5 investors receive their green card after “investing” this amount, ), the amount will be changed to $800,000. 

2)  Gifts of funds to the investor will be limited to those from immediate family members, siblings and grandparents. 

3. Those pre-approved US companies (“Regional Centers”) will have to pay an annual ‘EB5 Integrity fee’ of $20,000, which means the US companies might pass on the fee to each investors in some way. 

Will the reform actually happen? Will the investment amount increase? It is hard to say as all other bills born and died on the Congress’s floor. There is certain support from influential people though. Bill Gates and Warren Buffet, for instance, are one of them, especially when Congress sits down to review actual cases, they will find lots of fraud in this area and increase is necessary to assure the purpose of this program not to be frustrated. 

We will keep watching. You are more than welcome to contact us for your thoughts or more related information.

EB5 走向何方?

EB5试点计划于1992年颁布,允许在预先批准的美国公司(所谓的区域中心)的外国投资。自从试行以来,每2-3年该计划已被重新授权。 目前EB5试点计划于2015年9月30日到期。
3)这些预先得到接受投资批准的美国公司(“区域中心”)将每年支付“EB-5诚信费”$ 20,000,这意味着美国公司可能以某种方式转嫁该笔费用給投资人。
EB5改革会实现吗?投资金额会增加吗?结果很难说的,因为和所有其他法案一样,这个法案也可能自生自灭。当然一些有影响力的人在很大程度是支持这样的改变的, 比如比尔·盖茨和沃伦·巴菲特。 当美国国会讨论该事项的时候,他们会发现目前的EB5在实施的过程中有大量欺诈的行为, 因此增加投资底线是必要的,以确保该计划的实施达到其预设的目的。 
我们会继续观望。 如果有问题和想法,请来电。 954 892 5517

Sunday, September 20, 2015

When my visa application will be denied or my visa will be revoked?

Under Immigration Law, people with certain characteristics are not allowed to enter U.S.with a visa or green card, which is called inadmissible. Generally speaking, people with histories of criminal or terrorist activities, drug abuse, infectious medical problems, or certain other characteristics are considered inadmissible aliens.  Some of the grounds may receive official waiver, which forgives or overlooks the inadmissibility. Grounds for admissibility include three categories shown as listed in the following list.

Classes of Grounds of Inadmissibility                                              Waivers Available?
People with communicable diseases like tuberculosis                            Yes
People with physical or mental disorders that
may cause harm to themselves or others                                                   Yes
Drug abusers or addicts                                                                                 No
Drug traffickers                                                                                                 No
People without proper vaccinations                                                             Yes
People with convictions for crimes involving moral turpitude                Yes
People who have violated immigration laws                                              Yes
Prostitutes                                                                                                          Yes
People with multiple criminal convictions                                                   Yes
Spies                                                                                                                    No
Terrorists                                                                                                             No
Nazis                                                                                                                    No
People likely to become dependent on
need-based government assistance                                                             No

US consulate, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) may decide a person is inadmissible at time of application.  If you are a U.S. border when this occurs,  will be turned around and sent home. If you're in the United States, you will, if you have no other visa or status, be sent to immigration court for removal from the United States.

Even a permanent resident (green card holder) might be found inadmissible.  If a permanent resident departs the United States for more than 180 days, it's possible for him or her to be found inadmissible upon return. This situation might arise, for example, if the person had committed a crime, had developed tuberculosis, or had begun receiving public assistance since receiving the green card.

Even if you fall into one of the categories of inadmissibility, you may not be absolutely barred from getting a green card or otherwise entering the United States if a waiver is averrable to you.  You may ultimately need to hire a good immigration lawyer. You are welcome to contact us for details. 

Saturday, July 11, 2015


亚洲学生学术上超群地优秀已经是不争的事实。 但学术优秀的亚洲学生被一流大学拒绝也渊源已久。 据查,早在1990年,相关法律出台的第二年,就有亚洲学生代表组织向联邦法院提出了对Harvard, USC就招生过程的歧视提出了诉讼, 并获得了成功。 目前, 随着亚洲移民的数量的增加,这个问题更加严重。 

那么我们怎么去维权呢? 中国有句古话说有理不在声高。 但美国的现状则是, Crying Babies Get Everything.  会哭的孩子得到所有的东西。 我们是一个以优雅为传统的民族,况且,我们所要争的权利--入校权--是和修养紧密相关的权利。 我个人认为,如果我们停留在上街游行可能只能有负面影响。 

我绝对不能说我是这方面的专家。 作为华裔的一分子,为了维护华裔共同的利益,我愿意尽一份微薄的力量, 把我在代理的用工歧视案的过程中所做的研究分享出来, 希望尽绵薄之力。 

我们不难想象,Harvard 和其他Ivy League 不会因为有几个人在窗外呐喊, 就改变自己的招生政策或招生决定。 谁能改变他们? 当然是法院。 那么问题是,他们犯法了吗?

美国宪法第14修改案指出: 任何政府部门不得剥夺任何人法律面前平等的权力。 在该修改案的基础上,美国在1964年制定了美国民权法。 其第六章指出,任何接受联邦政府资金支持的学校不得因种族,肤色,国籍而歧视任何人。 当然还有好些类似的联邦法案相继出了台,比如 Civil right Statute 42. U.S.C 

谁主张谁举证。 他们是被该法律管辖的对象吗?是的。 美国几乎所有的大小学校都有政府资金的介入。 所以他们的行为受该法律管辖。 他们歧视了亚洲人吗? 不难想象,Harvard 等学校会否认他们的决定是基于歧视--仅仅基于申请人是亚裔而做出的。他们有很多解释,比如, 领导能力, 其他非学术方面的能力, 创新能力等等。 那么我们怎么来回应呢?

首先, 我们可以挑战他们的政策的合法性。 也就是说,这种政策允许下的招生行为有没有违反宪法; 如果他们有,他们必须要改招生标准; 

另外就是,我们必须要挑战他们所提出的拒绝招收某个学生的理由是不是只是借口。 比如, 举出若干有所有他们要求的能力的亚裔学生还是被拒绝了, 就能证明他们没有按照他们的政策做,而是由于歧视而拒绝亚裔。 

说起来很简单,但美国的法律从来不是一刀切地绝对的。 具体来说, 如果基于种族而做的决定是以保护另一个更重要的国家利益为目的的, 这样的决定不会被认为是歧视。

总的来说,既然我们决定了要维权, 那么我们应该用智慧和团结的力量坚持下去。 这样我们即能维权,也能获得其他族裔的理解和支持。 我们集体的声望只会因此而上升不会下降。以上系个人意见,仅供参考。 

The Legal Way to Achieve Equal Access for Asian to Elite Colleges

Applying to Ivy League Colleges like Harvard, MIT and Yale has always been stressful. Today, the number of students applying to elite colleges is exploding,
and the applicants have better test scores. Getting into a highly selective university has never been harder.
Yet, Asian-American student face an extra source of stress: race and ethnicity. Admission Discrimination by college is hardly new controversy. Series of legal cases challenging colleges’ quota limiting number of Asian students started as early as 1990.
Recently with the increased numbers of Asian Immigrants and their public complaints, the same issues are under new round of scrutiny. Lately, Students for Fair Admission, an non-profit organization filed lawsuit against Harvard
alleging the university’s practices discriminated Asian students on the basis of race, color and national origin.
Sixty-four Asian-American groups filed similar complaint against Harvard with the federal Departments of Education and Justice claiming unlawful use of race” in its admissions process to discriminate against Asian-American applicants.
In order to win these allegations, it is important to know the legal bases for these complaints. In other word, what laws did the colleges violate?

The root of the anti-discrimination law is fourteenth Amendment of Constitution of the United States. Constitution restricts government power against the people. In order to reach the actions of individuals, Congress, using its power to regulate interstate commerce, enacted the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibiting discrimination based on "race, color, religion, or national origin" in public establishments that have a connection to interstate commerce or are supported by the state. See 42 U.S.C. § 2000a Title VI of the Civil Rights Act prohibits discrimination in federally funded programs. As a matter of fact, since 1964 the Supreme Court has expanded the reach of the 14th Amendment in some situations to individuals discriminating on their own.
Individuals claiming that a federal aid recipient, in this case, elite colleges, has violated Title VI can file an administrative complaint with the federal agency that funded the recipient or with Department of Justice.

Direct proof of discriminatory motive is often unavailable. In the absence of such evidence, the investigating agency must first determine if the complainant can raise an inference of discrimination, then the investigating agency must determine if the recipient can articulate a legitimate nondiscriminatory for the chained action, in plain English, a persuasive explanation that the admission policy is not designed to discriminate. If the recipient can articulate a nondiscriminatory explanation for the alleged discriminatory action, the investigating agency must determine whether the record contains sufficient evidence to establish that the recipient's stated reason was a pretext for discrimination. In other words, the evidence must support a finding that the reason articulated by the recipient was not the true reason for the challenged action, and that the real reason was discrimination based on race, color, or national origin.

In closing, discrimination against Asian students by Elite Colleges is elephant in the room. Raising voices is easy, to win and to make them change will take a series of legal battle. Knowing what can be done is ultimately essential to assure equal access of Asian to Elite colleges. 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Investor Alert: Investment Scams Exploit Immigrant Investor Program

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's ("SEC") Office of Investor Education and Advocacy and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services ("USCIS") are aware of investment scams targeting foreign nationals who seek to become permanent lawful U.S. residents through the Immigrant Investor Program ("EB-5").  In close coordination with USCIS, which administers the EB-5 program, the SEC has taken emergency enforcement action to stop allegedly fraudulent securities offerings made through EB-5.

The fact that a business is designated as a regional center by USCIS does not mean that USCIS, the SEC, or any other government agency has approved the investments offered by the business, or has otherwise expressed a view on the quality of the investment. The SEC and USCIS are aware of attempts to misuse the EB-5 program as a means to carry out fraudulent securities offerings. 

The fact that a business is designated as a regional center by USCIS does not mean that USCIS, the SEC, or any other government agency has approved the investments offered by the business, or has otherwise expressed a view on the quality of the investment. The SEC and USCIS are aware of attempts to misuse the EB-5 program as a means to carry out fraudulent securities offerings. 

SEC and USCIS urges the investors to look for warning signs of fraud. So far the hallmarks of fraud in EB5 program are as follows: 1) promises of a visa or becoming a lawful resident; 2) guaranteed investment returns or no investment risk; 3) Overly consistent high investment returns. 

SEC and USCIS also recommend investors to seek independent verification to confirm whether claims made about the investment are true. Independent lawyers with economic background, with no affiliation with the projects, are qualified professionals to conduct due diligent research for verification purpose. We are one of those. If you have any questions, please call us at 954 892 5517.