President Obama has announced a series of executive actions. Some key aspects of the action have potential to benefit our clients. Some key aspects of the action include:
- Employment Authorization for H-4 Visa: The regulatory changes to implement this is already in process. This will be continued and expected to be implemented in the next few weeks.
- Pre-Registration: Beneficiaries (Employees) with approved I-140 petition can "pre-register" to adjust status and obtain relevant benefits (EAD, Travel document and AC-21 portability) even if priority dates are not current. This will be implemented through regulations. Expected timeline next few months.
- AC-21 Portability: USCIS to provide more clarity on "same or similar occupation" language for AC21 portability of green card.
- Extension of STEM: Expansion and strengthening of STEM OPT extensions. Details to come.
- Visa Optimization: A presidential memorandum will be issued to direct agencies to optimize the use of visa, counting derivatives, recapturing unused numbers, etc. Details to come.
- PERM Process: Directive to US Department of Labor to modernize the PERM process. DOL Fact Sheet on PERM Modernization.
- Other highlights: More guidance on L-1B process, clarity on use of Advance Parole, National Interest Waiver for entrepreneurs, researchers, investors and founders, parole for some investors, among others. Respective agencies are expected provide more information on these in the coming days.
For details and highlights of the proposed actions and timeline for implementation, check our summary of the action and FAQs. USCIS has provided details on the action and the next steps on their website. DOL has also published a fact sheet on PERM modernization. We are closely following the regulatory implementation of the proposed actions. We will keep our clients informed through emails and on our website regarding eligibility and timeline for filing as we get more updates.