Immigration Law

Visas for health care workers

Health care workers in Indiana and around the country are at a premium. According to the New American Economy, there are 27 open positions for every health care worker who is unemployed. While many of those positions are in rural areas, there are positions available across the United States. Approximately 18% of America’s health care workers hold an H1-B visa. Those with an H1-B visa may want to help, but many cannot. Since there is a low cap on the number of H1-B visas issued, employers can turn to other solutions for help. What is an H1-B visa? An H1-B visa allows workers with at least a...

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Border agents and the 100-mile rule

Some parts of Indiana are less than 100 miles from the Canadian border, which means U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents can question almost anyone about their immigration status. The 1946 Immigration and Nationality Act gave border agents the authority to question anybody they believe to be an alien within a "reasonable distance" of a U.S. boundary. Seven years later, the Department of Justice defined a reasonable distance as 100 miles. According to the American Civil Liberties Union, this rule means that two out of three Americans can be questioned, searched and possibly detained....

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Who can be a petitioner in Indiana?

If you are seeking a visa to enter the United States, you may need a petitioner to request a visa on your behalf. A petitioner usually submits requests on behalf on foreign nationals to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, or USCIS. After the request is approved, the foreign national is eligible to submit a visa application. The petitioner can be a U.S. citizen who is an immediate relative or an employer. The foreign national is referred to as a beneficiary. As per U.S. immigration law, USCIS uses two forms for a petitioner to submit on behalf of the beneficiary. If the petitioner is a...

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How military family members can obtain citizenship

There are current immigration laws in place that allow for the spouses and children of United States service members to gain naturalization even outside of the U.S. For the children of these brave men and women, there are pathways to automatically becoming a United States citizen. Service members and their families in Indiana should become familiar with some basic information about this process. Naturalization overseas for spouses The law allows for spouses who have achieved Lawful Permanent Resident, or LPR, status to be granted permanent residency without having to return to the states if...

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Obtaining an O2 visa

The United States offers a wide array of visas to those wanting to come into the country. One of the possibilities for entry to Indiana and states across the country is the O2 visa, which is part of a number of O visas that help those with extraordinary abilities in various fields come into the U.S with their families and personnel. O visas include O1, O2 and O3. What is an O2 visa? The O2 visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows a talented individual to bring their personnel with them. This may apply to those working within the TV or film industry. However, it should be noted that this does...

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U.S work visas: what you need to know about visa requirements

If you're a foreign national looking to obtain work in Indiana or anywhere within the United States, you need to go through the process of obtaining a work visa. Only then would you be allowed to enter the country and obtain work legally. Several factors contribute to the type of work visa you will be allowed to obtain. The following includes a list of the types of work visas available and the eligibility requirements for each one. U.S. green cards A green card holder is allowed to be a permanent resident within the United States if they are offered a long-term job. However, obtaining a...

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ICE to target sanctuary cities

Indiana residents may have heard that in September, the Trump Administration began planning to conduct a variety of immigration enforcement operations across sanctuary cities. The operations will be carried out by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE. These operations will occur within certain cities of California as well as Denver and Philadelphia. There have been speculations that the operations will stretch out into other states in the country too. When will these operations occur? The Homeland Security secretary is reportedly planning to be present within these locations when the...

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Companies struggle with H1-B visas

H1-B visas have long been an important form of employment-based immigration. People in Indiana should know that H1-Bs have allowed companies to fill high-skilled jobs with workers from overseas. Often, when it comes to fields like math, science and technology, there is only a small pool of talent to choose from. There may only be a handful of qualified candidates in the world, and American companies need to be able to reach them to keep their competitive edge. A political issue However, since 2017, the president has been opposed to the H1-B program. New regulations have been put in place...

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Speeding up the spousal immigration process

Some members of the United States Congress have addressed processing delays for individuals dealing with immigration matters. One area marked by Congress for improvement is spousal sponsorships. The website maintained by the U.S. Customs and Immigration services lists wait times, but families in Indiana familiar with the process for I-130 and other petitions that require a spousal sponsorship know these listed times do not tell a complete story. Immigration law allows individuals who are citizens or lawful permanent residents of the United States to sponsor a spouse or other relative who...

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Denial rates for H-1B petitions have increased

Many companies in Indiana and across the U.S. rely on H-1B visa workers to fill open positions for which they cannot find enough U.S. skilled workers. The tech industry heavily relies on securing enough employees by using the H-1B visa system. However, the denial rates for H-1B visa applications from companies have been increasing, meaning that more positions are going unfilled because of a lack of skilled workers to fill them.   H-1B visa application denial rates going up   According to a report in Forbes, companies that rely on H-1B workers are receiving an increasing number of...

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