June 2012

Keeping the DREAM Alive: A Glimmer of Hope for the Undocumented Youth!

On June 15, 2012, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that effective immediately, certain young people who were brought to the United States illegally through no fault of their own as young children will not be removed from the United States.

Given the Congress’s failure to enact the DREAM Act, the DHS as directed by the Executive Branch, has initiated its own policy to protect such individuals from being removed. Those eligible will be eligible to receive deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal.

The criteria from the DHS publication are discussed below. Only those individuals who can prove through verifiable documentation that they meet these criteria will be eligible for deferred action. Further, below is a partial summary of the DHS publication.

NeJame Law Hosts Seminar for Realtors and Business Brokers

On May 23, 2012, experienced attorneys from NeJame Law / NeJame Law, hosted a seminar, "Real Estate and Business Solutions for your Foreign Clients."

Our Firm invited several realtors and business brokers from the community and educated them about the requirements of various business visa options. The goal was to inform these professionals about the types of investments and purchases which could qualify for attaining immigration status in the United States. In this manner, they could guide their clients properly.

Upon receiving tremendous feedback from our guests, and the overwhelming demand, we are scheduling a second seminar. However, any interested parties must make arrangements by contacting us at immigration@nejamelaw.com

We are glad to help the real estate professionals and business brokers in our community.

USCIS Launches Online Filing System

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that it has launched the first phase of its electronic immigration benefits system, known as USCIS ELIS. According to USCIS, the system has been created to modernize the process for filing and adjudicating immigration benefits.

Through ELIS, foreign nationals may apply online to extend or change their nonimmigrant status for certain visa types; and pay filing fees and submit evidence online, among other things. Currently, the system is limited to filing for extension for certain visa types, such as B-1/B-2, F-1, J-1 and M-1.

H-1B Petition Cap . . . approaching Fast!

As of June 11, 2012, USCIS announced that it has reached its annual cap of H-1B visa petitions. Thus it has received the maximum 65,000 visa petitions permissible each year.

Background: Anyone with an offer of employment for a "specialty occupation," requiring a bachelor's degree or higher, may be eligible for this valuable H-1B employment visa. There is a cap of 65,000 petitions per fiscal year. Some aliens of advanced degree are provided an exemption from the cap, i.e. for the first 20,000 petitions filed for beneficiaries who have obtained a U.S. master's degree or higher. Some are exempt from the cap altogether.

If you are looking for an employment-based visa in order to remain in the U.S., consult with an experienced immigration attorney immediately.

In This Issue


Newsletter Issues


Q & A - Real Estate as a way to Immigration Status

Q: Dear Immigration Counselors, I am a realtor here in the Central Florida area. Two of my clients, one from Brazil, and one from Pakistan, wish to purchase a residence here. They also want to secure their immigration status here so that their children may acquire good education and opportunities here.

My question is, can my clients purchase real estate in order to get status here in the U.S.?


A: Dear A.R.,

Yours is a very good question and a popular one faced by many realtors. In our seminar, "Real Estate and Business Solutions for your Foreign Clients," we addressed this very issue. Generally, the U.S. immigration law does not provide legal status on the basis of a real estate purchase alone. However, it does permit an investment in a U.S. business enterprise as a basis for visa status. Thus for example, while the purchase of an undeveloped land, or a house for your own residence, may not qualify, investing in a condominium project may qualify.

Further, there are several business visa categories and each one has its own requirements. In order to determine which one is best for your client, it is important to consult with an experienced immigration attorney.

To ask Immigration Counselors your questions, please email attorney@immigrationcounselors.com


Your Visa Bulletin

Visit http://www.travel.state.gov/visa/bulletin/bulletin_5733.html to check the recent priority dates for Immigrant Visa Bulletin.

Be sure to review the most recent month.


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