In a continuation of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”)’s crackdown on fraud among the foreign student population, ICE established and ran “The University of Farmington” in the Detroit suburbs.  As a result, the government indicted eight individuals for conspiracy to commit visa fraud and harboring aliens for profit.  At least 600 foreign nationals obtained fraudulent student visas through ICE’s undercover operation, which had no instructors or classes that would enable students to pursue a course of study.  Recruiters actively identified and helped enroll foreign nationals into the “university” and helped them obtain documentation that was required in order to seek work authorization from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”).  Students who enrolled in the “university” also face potential civil and criminal penalties if the government can prove they knew they would not attend classes or pursue a course of study.

Continue Reading Another Fake University – U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Stings Again

On June 28, 2018, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services issued a policy memo telling adjudicators when they are required to issue Notices To Appear after denying or while processing a petition or application for benefits.  The NTA is the charging document that, once filed with the Executive Office for Immigration Review (a branch of the U.S. Department of Justice), puts an individual into formal removal proceedings before an immigration judge.

Continue Reading USCIS Issues, Then Postpones, New Policy Expanding Agency’s Issuance of Notices To Appear in Removal Proceedings

As negotiations in Congress continue towards resolving the shutdown of the federal government, individuals and companies that interact with the various federal agencies that administer immigration programs are naturally wondering how they might be affected. US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) typically provides clear information about the impact of a government shutdown on its operations. For other agencies, we can only look to prior shutdowns in 2011 and 2013 to understand what to expect.

As a general matter, only “essential” employees will continue to work until funding is restored. The following is what we anticipate with respect to the various agencies Hunton & Williams deals with on behalf of our clients:


Continue Reading How Will the Government Shutdown Impact Immigration? It Depends on the Federal Agency and Program Involved

If 2017 is any indication, the new year will bring a fresh cascade of changes – both announced and unannounced, anticipated and unanticipated – in the business immigration landscape.  Few, if any, of these changes are expected to be good news for U.S. businesses and the foreign workers they employ.

In 2017, while much of the news media focused on the Trump Administration’s draconian changes to practices and policies that affected the undocumented – including ending the DACA Dreamer program, shutting down Temporary Protected Status for citizens of countries ravished by war and natural disaster, and aggressively enforcing at the southern border and in “sensitive” locations such as churches, courthouses, and homeless shelters – relatively less attention has been paid to the steady, incremental erosion of rights and options for legal immigrants, particularly those who are sponsored for work by U.S. employers, under the Administration’s April 2017 “Buy American / Hire American” executive order.  There is no doubt that such restrictions to the legal immigration system will continue to cause business uncertainty and disruption in 2018.  Here’s what to expect:


Continue Reading Buckle Your Seatbelts: 2018 Will Be a Watershed Year in Business Immigration