29 Aug 2019

Next week, I am scheduled to travel to the U.S. to visit my adult children for a few months. I just realized that my B-1/B-2 visa stamp is going to expire next month. Does that mean I will only be issued an I-94 through the expiration date of the visa stamp?

Answer So long as the B-1/B-2 visa foil (commonly referred to as a "stamp") is valid at the time the person requests admission into the United States, the expiration date of the visa will generally not impact the validity period of the I-94 issued by the...

21 Aug 2019

Public Charge Ground of Inadmissibility Greatly Expanded

On August 14, 2019, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published the final rule, Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds, that greatly expands the categories of public benefits considered in the determination of whether a foreign national may be deemed a public charge (i.e., a...

19 Aug 2019

Nonimmigrant Visa Waivers – Process and Criteria

Foreign nationals may be deemed ineligible for admission (i.e. "inadmissible") to the United States for a variety of reasons. Common grounds of inadmissibility include the following: medical grounds, criminal grounds, and immigration violations (including fraud or material misrepresentation in connection with an immigration benefit). In...

17 Jun 2019

I was in the U.S. in H1B status previously and I have an approved I-140. I am currently living in India. I applied for a job in the U.S., and the company wishes for me to come in for an in-person interview. What type of visa can I apply for, and what documents do I need from the U.S. company?

Answer Assuming that the company has not yet filed an H1B petition, the proper visa for one in this situation would normally be a B-1/B-2 "visitor" visa. This type of visa is not "sponsored." However, a letter from the company, on company letterhead, inviting one to...

04 Jun 2019

DS-160 and DS-260 Now Require Social Media Information

The U.S. State Department (DOS) has implemented changes to electronic forms DS-160, Application for a Nonimmigrant Visa, and DS-260, Application for an Immigrant Visa, that go into effect immediately. These applications will now request information about the social media username or handle used by an...

03 Jun 2019

USCIS Implements Stricter Expedite Request Criteria

On May 10, 2019, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) updated the Adjudicator's Field Manual (AFM) to reduce the circumstances under which the USCIS will consider granting a case expedited treatment. In general, the USCIS has the authority to grant an expedite request on...

07 May 2019

Serious Immigration Consequences for Marijuana, Despite State Law Changes

Legalization or decriminalization of marijuana at the state level can mislead noncitizens into thinking using marijuana in accordance with state law is legal. Marijuana, however, is a controlled substance under federal law. Therefore, the use, sale, purchase, or even the mere possession of marijuana, in...

15 Apr 2019

I am a U.S. citizen, and I filed an I-130 for my parents. However, they do not yet wish to apply for green cards. In the meantime, are they allowed to visit me on their B-2 visas?

Answer Someone who is the beneficiary of a pending or approved I-130 petition likely will be subject to a higher degree of scrutiny and questioning by CBP if they try to enter the U.S. as a visitor. (15.Apr.2019)In frequent sessions of our Chat, Sheela Murthy and...

01 Apr 2019

I am in H1B status and am in the process of applying for a green card. If a doctor gives me a prescription for medical marijuana, will that impact my green card case?

Answer One needs to be VERY careful with this. Although many states have legalized marijuana, it is still classified as a Schedule A drug under federal law (the same classification as drugs like heroin and cocaine). Even if state law allows the use of marijuana for...