USCIS Update to Forms 2017

January 3, 2017 by  
Filed under Attorneys, Features

Update to Form I-602, Application By Refugee For Waiver of Grounds of Excludability
12/30/2016 02:00 PM EST

New edition dated 12/19/16. Previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-134, Affidavit of Support
12/30/2016 01:56 PM EST

New edition dated 11/30/16. Starting 02/27/17, USCIS will only accept the 11/30/16 edition. Until then, you can use the 02/19/14 edition and other previous editions.

Update to Form I-90, Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card
12/27/2016 12:10 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-102, Application for Replacement/Initial Nonimmigrant Arrival-Departure Document
12/27/2016 12:09 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker
12/27/2016 12:09 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. Previous editions dated 08/13/15, 03/26/15 and 10/23/14 also accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e)
12/27/2016 12:07 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative
12/27/2016 12:06 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-131A, Application for Travel Document (Carrier Documentation)
12/27/2016 12:06 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.
Update to Form I-212, Application for Permission to Reapply for Admission into the United States After Deportation or Removal
12/27/2016 12:04 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-290B, Notice of Appeal or Motion
12/27/2016 12:03 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status
12/27/2016 12:02 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur
12/27/2016 12:01 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-539, Application To Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status
12/27/2016 12:00 PM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-600, Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative
12/27/2016 11:58 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of an Orphan Petition
12/27/2016 11:57 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-698, Application to Adjust Status from Temporary to Permanent Resident (Under Section 245A of the INA)
12/27/2016 11:55 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence
12/27/2016 11:54 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-690, Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility
12/27/2016 11:53 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-800, Petition to Classify Convention Adoptee as an Immediate Relative
12/27/2016 11:51 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-800A, Application for Determination of Suitability to Adopt a Child from a Convention Country
12/27/2016 11:50 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-817, Application for Family Unity Benefits
12/27/2016 11:50 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-824, Application for Action on an Approved Application or Petition
12/27/2016 11:49 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form I-929, Petition for Qualifying Family Member of a U-1 Nonimmigrant
12/27/2016 11:46 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions

Update to Form N-565, Application for Replacement Naturalization/Citizenship Document
12/27/2016 11:35 AM EST

New edition dated 06/21/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.

Update to Form N-600, Application for Certificate of Citizenship
12/27/2016 11:34 AM EST

New edition dated 12/23/16. No previous editions accepted. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the Form and Instructions.
For more information, please visit our Forms Updates page.

Message from USCIS San Antonio District Office: New Address

October 10, 2016 by  
Filed under Attorneys

New Address for USCIS San Antonio:

20760 North US Highway 281
San Antonio, TX 78258

The office will be closed to the public from October 21st through the October 31st.

We will reopen to the public on November 1st, 2016 at our regular time. Please note, that this announcement is strictly for the Field Office and not for the ASC.

Any USCIS emergencies can be handled at new office location from Oct 20 – Nov 1st

INFOPASS will be available at new site: Nov 1st
INFOPASS appointments will end at old site: Oct 20

USCIS has erroneously mailed over 500 notices with the old address. We’ll be working on remailing a new batch with the correct address.

All interviews scheduled after Oct 31st will be held at our new location.

If you have any questions about the new location, please email snainquiries@uscis.dhs.gov

USCIS will also notify you of any further updates. USCIS looks forward to seeing you at our new location.

‘Docket Chaos’ Roils Immigration Courts

October 7, 2016 by  
Filed under Attorneys

Caitlin Dickerson, New York Times, Oct. 7, 2016- “The Obama administration is delaying deportation proceedings for recent immigrants in cities across the United States, allowing more than 56,000 of those who fled Central America since 2014 to remain in the country legally for several more years.

The shift, described in interviews with immigration lawyers, federal officials, and current and former judges, has been occurring without public attention for months. It amounts to an unannounced departure from the administration’s widely publicized pronouncements that cases tied to the so-called surge of 2014 would be rushed through the immigration courts in an effort to deter more Central Americans from entering the United States illegally.

The delayed cases are those of nearly half of the Central Americans who entered the United States as families since 2014, and close to a quarter of the total number of Central Americans who entered during that period, according to figures from the Justice Department.

The delays are being made as a cost-saving measure, federal officials said, because of a lapse in enforcement that allowed immigrants who were supposed to be enrolled in an electronic monitoring program to go free.

… “The whole thing is docket chaos,” said Paul Schmidt, who retired in June after a 30-year career working for federal immigration agencies, the last 13 years as an immigration judge.”

Supreme Court Case May Reduce Deportation Uncertainty

September 27, 2016 by  
Filed under Attorneys

By Allissa Wickham
Law360, New York (September 29, 2016, 10:10 PM EDT) — With the U.S. Supreme Court now set to decide whether part of the “crime of violence” definition is unconstitutionally vague, the justices may reduce uncertainty over whether some crimes can lead to deportation and even open the door to challenges to other nebulous immigration provisions, experts say.
Adding another immigration case to its docket for the upcoming term, the Supreme Court on Thursday took up Lynch v. Dimaya, which asks the court to decide whether part of the “crime of violence” definition, as incorporated into immigration law, is unconstitutionally vague.

Although the issue can seem a bit in the weeds, whether a violation counts as a crime of violence can actually have a profound effect on an immigrant’s life. This is because violations deemed to be “crimes of violence” count as aggravated felonies if the sentence is a year or more, and being convicted of an aggravated felony has a drastic impact on deportation relief.

“Once a noncitizen is found to have had an aggravated felony on their record, it’s essentially like a death knell in immigration,” said Professor Jennifer Lee Koh, director of the immigration clinic at Western State College of Law. “It means they’re subject to deportation with very few avenues to even request that the courts grant them relief.”

But in an interesting recent development, a host of appeals courts have found part of the “crime of violence” definition too vague. The provision in question — 18 USC 16(b) — defines a crime of violence as a felony that involves a “substantial risk” that physical force might be used while the violation is being committed.

If the Supreme Court were to strike down the clause, it would remove some uncertainty over whether certain offenses could be deemed crimes of violence and lead to deportation, according to Holly Cooper, associate director of the Immigration Law Clinic at the University of California, Davis School of Law.

“What it will do I think is eliminate this unforeseeability of how attenuated the violence must be to the crime,” Cooper said, on the possibility of the high court finding the definition unconstitutionally vague.

The Dimaya case is prime example of how violence can be read into crimes that may not seem inherently violent. There, an immigration judge found a burglary offense was a crime of violence, noting that illegal entry into a home is “by its very nature” a violation where there is “apt to be violence,” according to the Ninth Circuit.

However, the Ninth Circuit ruled in Dimaya last October that the federal test for a “crime of violence” was unconstitutionally vague. Other appeals courts like the Sixth, Seventh and Tenth Circuits followed suit, although the Fifth Circuit opted to march to the beat of its own drum, holding that the provision was not unconstitutionally vague in August.

“We now have four federal appellate courts that have ruled that 18 USC 16(b) … is unconstitutionally vague because it doesn’t provide fair notice of what comes within that definition,” said Sejal Zota, legal director at the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild. “And because it’s arbitrarily enforced.”

The deluge of crime of violence rulings came in light of the Supreme Court’s 2015 decision in Johnson v. U.S. The justices held in Johnson that imposing an increased sentence under the “residual clause” of the Armed Career Criminal Act — which allowed a crime to be classified as a violent felony if it posed a serious risk of injury to others — violates the Constitution’s guarantee of due process.

“Johnson struck down the residual clause of the Armed Career Criminal Act, and it did contain similar language to 18 USC 16(b),” said Zota, who noted that both statutes also used the same methodology.

With the high court down a justice, it remains to be seen whether the Supreme Court would be able to muster a five-justice majority to make this a precedential case, although a 4-4 split would uphold the Ninth Circuit’s ruling. For those looking for clues as to how the justices might rule, Chief Justice John Roberts, and Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor joined the late Justice Antonin Scalia for the majority in Johnson. Justices Anthony Kennedy and Clarence Thomas filed concurring opinions, while Samuel Alito filed a dissent.

However, if the Supreme Court were to say the crime of violence definition is too vague, that could be grounds for future challenges to other provisions that often crop up in so-called “crimmigration” cases: the “crimes involving moral turpitude” category, according to Mary Holper, associate clinical professor at Boston College Law School, who also expressed hope that “particularly serious crimes” could get the ax as well.

“That would be my prediction if the Supreme Court decides on the crime of violence definition, that those could be, hopefully, the next to go,” Holper said.

Attorney General Loretta Lynch is represented by acting Solicitor General Ian Heath Gershengorn.

James Garcia Dimaya is represented by E. Joshua Rosenkranz of Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.

The case is Lynch v. Dimaya, case number 15-1498, in the Supreme Court of the United States.

–Additional reporting by Daniel Siegal and Kelly Knaub. Editing by Mark Lebetkin and Jill Coffey.

USCIS Forms Update Notice

August 27, 2016 by  
Filed under Attorneys

Good afternoon,
We recently updated the following USCIS form(s):
Update to Form I-601A, Application for Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver
08/31/2016 11:31 AM EDT

New edition dated 07/29/16. We cannot accept previous editions.
Update to Form I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant
08/31/2016 11:20 AM EDT

New edition dated 03/14/16. Starting 10/31/16, USCIS will only accept the 03/14/16 edition. Until then, you can use the 03/05/13 edition.
Update to Form I-694, Notice of Appeal of Decision Under Sections 245A or 210 of the Immigration and Nationality Act
08/31/2016 10:55 AM EDT

New edition dated 03/29/2016. Starting 10/28/16, USCIS will only accept the 03/29/16 edition. Until then, you can use the 12/16/12 edition.
Update to Form N-336, Request for a Hearing on a Decision in Naturalization Proceedings (Under Section 336 of the INA)
08/31/2016 10:12 AM EDT

New edition dated 05/13/2016. Starting 10/13/16, USCIS will only accept the 05/13/2016 edition. Until then, you can use the 01/07/13 edition.
For more information, please visit our Forms Updates page.

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This information provided is not intended to replace the advice of an attorney but is merely provided as a public service. Each immigration case is different. For more information, consult with Thomas Esparza, Jr., Board Certified Specialist in Immigration and Nationality Law with more than 32 years of experience.
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