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New Orleans Louisiana Immigration Law Blog

It's not a wise idea to overstay your United States visa

When you apply for and receive a visa to visit or work in the United States, it generally has effective dates on it. It's only between one date and the next that you're permitted to travel within or remain working in this country. If you overstay the expiration date listed on your visa, then you may be subjected to various types of disciplinary action including jeopardizing your ability to return to the U.S.

The type of disciplinary action that you'll receive in such instances all comes down to how long you overstayed your visa's expiration date. Time begins "tolling," or accruing the minute that a visa holder overstays their visa. An immigrant may first have to wait whatever amount of time is tolled before they can return to the U.S. if they wish to return once again.

Louisiana has the largest number of detained immigrants

Louisiana is slowly becoming the prime location for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents to send its detainees. Currently, there are an estimated 8,000 out of a total of 48,000 immigrants that are being detained in Louisiana.The federal agency has signed several agreements that have allowed ICE officials to convert former prisons into detention facilities during the last year alone.

When asked why the federal agency has so far set up at least 11 immigration detention facilities in the state, a spokesperson mentioned that it wasn't necessarily intentional. She mentioned that the agency sets up these facilities whenever they can find bed space.

What kind of work visa can I get?

There are millions of people who dream of moving to the United States to pursue an employment opportunity. While this sounds easy enough, the immigration system is complex and full of twists and turns.

Individuals coming to the United States from a foreign country must obtain permission from the U.S. government. For example, anyone who wants to work permanently in the United States should follow the process of applying for a green card, which gives them permanent resident status.

Permanent residency and other filing fees to increase on Dec. 2

The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) planned to announce rate hikes for many of its popular immigration and naturalization services on Nov. 14. The cost to file for U.S. citizenship is one of the fees expected to increase the most. Early reports showed that it would increase by as much as 83% over what it has historically been. These increased rates are slated to go into effect on Dec. 2.

A spokesperson for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a federal agency that forms part of DHS, announced last week that the rates hike is far from spontaneous. The spokesperson noted that USCIS conducts fee reviews every two years to see if cost increases are warranted. USCIS does this to make sure that its budgetary obligations are met as their office is largely fee-funded.

Do not make jokes with immigration officials

You feel nervous when you talk to immigration officials. You often like to cover your nervousness with humor. Should you make jokes while talking to them and try to lighten the mood?

It's not advisable. You especially want to avoid joking about anything that may contain trigger words for those officials, such as:

  • Smuggling people over the border
  • Coming into the country illegally
  • Engaging in bigamy
  • Having communicable diseases
  • Dealing drugs

The number of H-1B work visas issued is steadily declining

A report released this week shows that at least 25% or more of H-1B employment visa applications were denied between Oct. 2018 and June 2019. This marks a significant increase over the H-1B denial rate during the 2015 fiscal year. Indian nationals, many of which occupy highly-specialized roles at some of the United States' leading tech companies are finding that their job prospects have been greatly diminished because of this.

Some of the biggest tech companies in the country that rely on foreign-born workers to fill their positions. Historically, 70% of the H1-B work visa recipients have been Indians. The number of Indian permit holders has declined significantly since Donald Trump came into office though.

Understanding sponsorship categories for immigration

Many people come to the United States for various opportunities. Those who choose to make a new life here desire to aid their loved ones in doing the same.

In certain instances, it is possible to help loved ones migrate to the U.S. However, it is important to understand the sponsorship process and requirements.

Minor mistakes could lead to extensive immigration detention

The unfortunate reality in the United States is that even minor, unintentional mistakes, if they break the law, can lead to extensive detention for those entering the country from elsewhere. You may feel like your situation is easily explainable and should not be a big deal, but the authorities could feel very different.

For instance, take the story of the family from England that accidentally turned from a road in Canada and onto a road in the United States. Pictures show the parallel roads running along with a few feet of grass between them. The family members claim it was an honest mistake and it's easy to see how it could happen. You could cross that distance in seconds.

How long does naturalization take?

You want to immigrate and become a U.S. citizen. It has always been a dream of yours. However, you have heard that it takes a long time, and it's a bit concerning to you. How long will it really take?

This is a fairly complex process. The short answer is that it averages out to more than a year. It's generally going to take anywhere from 14 months to 19.5 months. That's roughly 1.2 years to 1.5 years.

Immigrants face discrimination issues

With the current state of immigration in the United States, immigrants may feel that they face discrimination issues in many areas. This can impact their ability to get a job, find a place to live, integrate into society and much more. In some cases, discrimination could even lead to arrest and incarceration.

You can see how common this is when you consider the fact that the term "illegal alien" was recently banned in New York City. Lawmakers note that it can be demeaning and discriminatory. It can be used to harass and stereotype people, often based on an assumption about their ethnic background or national origin.

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Immigration & Nationality Law Group
938 Lafayette Street
Suite 201
New Orleans, LA 70113

Toll Free: 866-585-1072
Phone: 504-322-1407
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