Mithras Law Group Immigration Blog

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Posts Tagged ‘Illegal Immigrants

The Social Security Administration’s Policy on SSN Issuance for United States Citizen children Born to Undocumented Parents

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The Social Security Administration (SSA) clarified its policy to the American Immigration Lawyers Association on issuance of social security cards (SSN) to United States citizen (USC) children born to undocumented parents.

Q: Are SSNs issued automatically to USC children born in US hospitals?
A: Yes, if the parents choose Enumeration at Birth (EAB), which is a request made while mother and newborn are in the hospital.

Q: Are there any restrictions on undocumented parents requesting or receiving SSNs or SSN cards for their USC children?
A: If the SSN is requested through Enumeration at Birth (EAB) then there are no restrictions.

Q: What happens if a USC newborn is issued an SSN through Enumeration at Birth but the SSN Card is lost or misplaced?
A: A replacement SSN card can be issued but only a relative with acceptable evidence of identity can apply for a replacement card on behalf of the USC child.

Q: Can a non-citizen parent without valid status apply for an SSN for his/her USC newborn outside an Enumeration at Birth request?
A: No. A person filing an application on behalf of a numberholder or someone entitled to be a numberholder must submit the same types of identification documents required for the numberholder. For non-citizens, U.S. immigration documents are the only acceptable type of identification document, unless the applicant meets the requirements to be issued a non-work-authorized SSN. Foreign passports are not acceptable unless they contain current immigration entries, such as an I-94 or a stamp or visa indicating it is temporary evidence of permanent resident status.

Q: If Enumeration at Birth (EAB) was not utilized, what options are there for SSA to issue SSN and card to USC child if the parents are undocumented?
A: Another relative, who is able to submit documents SSA accepts, could apply, or the child can apply once he or she is old enough to sign his or her name (no age limits apply).

Written by MithrasLaw

January 20, 2010 at 3:17 pm

Another 1000 Companies to be Audited by ICE

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Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced last week that it will be expanding its audit program and that it has notified 1000 companies last week that they would have to undergo a review. ICE, in its first audit, reviewed 654 companies and fined 61 of the 654 companies audited.

According to ICE, the audit is the Obama Administration’s plan to crack down on companies that hire and rely on such illegal workers and to reduce illegal immigration by forcing companies to get rid of unauthorized workers.

Although the identity of the 1000 companies to face an audit was not revealed, ICE officials suggested that audits will affect private companies are involved with infrastructure operations like gas and electric utilities and contractors on military bases but not retailers and manufacturers of nonessential goods.

Typically, an audit consists of ICE officials checking each worker’s E-Verify form, known as an I-9, to confirm that the employees were eligible to work before they were hired.

Written by MithrasLaw

November 24, 2009 at 5:52 pm

Does the U.S. need an exit monitoring system for visitors?

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The arrest of Hosam Maher Husein Smadi, the 19-year-old Jordinaian who was accused of plotting to blow up Dallas skyscrapers has drawn attention from both parties of Congress that the U.S does not have an efficient system in place to trace foreign visitors on expired visas and that the US needs a universal electronic exit monitoring system. Mr. Smadi is a most recent example of a visitoir who entered the country legally but overstayed his visa.

It is estimated that about 40 percent of the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants in the United States came on legal visas and overstayed their visas. In FY ’09, of the 39 million temporary foreign visitors that were admitted in to the US, it is estimated that approximately 200,000 may have overstayed their visas and remained in the US.

Although the Department of Homeland Security officials express concern that the an universal exit control system can be an expensive and daunting option with more than one million crossings a day, it is one of the few ways to assure a systematic follow up that the visitors have departed and not overstayed their visas.

Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., has indicated he would attempt to apply federal stimulus funding to the building of an exit monitoring system.

Written by MithrasLaw

October 23, 2009 at 2:40 pm

Sharp Increases in Prosecution of Federal Immigration Cases in Obama Administration

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The latest data obtained by the Justice Department for the months of 2009 (i.e. from January to September 2009) reveals that prosecution of federal immigration cases has continued to surge in the Obama Administration. It is estimated that if prosecution continues at the same rate for the remaining part of 2009, the total will be more than 90,000 prosecutions, indicating an increase of 14.1 percent from last year.

The States registering the largest number of immigration prosecutions are Texas, Arizona,  New Mexico,  California, Florida, and New York.  For more information analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) click here.

Written by MithrasLaw

October 7, 2009 at 1:36 pm

H-1B September 2009 Update

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In the H-1B count released by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) the H-1B cap subject petitions count was 46,000 as of September 18, 2009 and approximately 20,000 petitions qualifying for the advanced degree cap exemption had been filed. USCIS will continue to accept both cap-subject petitions and advanced degree petitions until a sufficient number of H-1B petitions have been received to reach the statutory limits, taking into account the fact that some of these petitions may be denied, revoked, or withdrawn.

USCIS has warned that it will deny or revoke all petitions filed by an employer for the same H-1B worker if more than one filing was discovered.  So, if multiple petitions are discovered by the USCIS, it will retain all fees and either deny the petitions or, if the petition was approved, USCIS has the right to revoke the petition.

Written by MithrasLaw

September 25, 2009 at 2:52 pm

USCIS Unveils its Redesigned Website Today

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U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has unveiled its re-designed website today. The re-designed USCIS website looks pretty impressive  and definitely seems more user-friendly and navigable at first glance than its previous website.

The new Customer Tools section makes it a lot easier for users to navigate and find what they are looking for right on the USCIS homepage and users can check filing fees, file an application online, check the case status, as well as sign up for updates.

My Case Status has replaced the Case Status Online and a new option has been added for users to receive alerts through text messages sent to their phones. This way, users that sign up for text alerts will get a text message letting them know when an update has been made to their case.

My Case Status feature has been greatly enhanced and provides information to users about their individual case as well for the first time gives users access to national volumes and trends associated with key immigration petitions. This feature will, no doubt, greatly improve user satisfaction as it gives users a better understanding of what to expect in terms of processing times and is a step by the agency towards greater transparency.

My Case Status provides information to users on:

  • what processing step their case is in;
  • where that particular step falls in the process as a whole;
  • national goals and average processing times; and
  • specific processing time for the office where their case is spending.

The Where to Start section on the left side of the homepage is another useful feature that helps users to find content more easily and a provides a one-stop shop for immigration purposes. The feature enables users to retrieve the eligibility criteria and application procedure for the immigration procedure sought.

The Forms tab too is more user focused and rather than simply listing form numbers, the re-designed dashboard categorizes forms by areas such as Employment based forms, Green card based forms, or Citizenship and Naturalization based forms.

All in all, a thumbs up for the redesigned USCIS website which seems more user-friendly, easier to navigate, and less overwhelming for users.

Written by MithrasLaw

September 22, 2009 at 2:48 pm

Effective Today Federal Contractors and Subcontractors Required to Use E-Verify

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Effective today Federal Contractors and Subcontractors will be required to use the E-Verify system, an electronic system to verify their employees’ eligibility to work in the United States, if their contract includes the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) E-Verify Clause.

Companies awarded a contract with the E-Verify clause on or after September 8 2009 will be required to enroll in E-Verify within 30 days of the contract award date.  E-Verify must be used to confirm that all new hires, whether employed on a federal contract or not, and existing employees directly working on these contracts are legally authorized to work in the United States.

The U.S District Court Judge Alexander Williams Jr. rejected an emergency motion for an injunction by U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business groups to delay the mandate while a federal appeal is pending. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business groups argue that that it is illegal for the government to extend E-verify to contractors through an executive order and that E-Verify will put greater liability on employers and employers will incur a cost burden to modify their payroll systems or existing personnel.

E-Verify,  which compares information from the Employment Eligibility Verification Form (I-9) against federal government databases to verify workers’ employment eligibility, is a free web-based system operated by the Department of Homeland Security in partnership with the Social Security Administration (SSA). The system facilitates compliance with federal immigration laws and helps to deter unauthorized individuals from attempting to work and also helps employers avoid employing unauthorized aliens. Although the the E-verify system will reduce hiring of illegal immigrants by verifying documentation it is not fool proof as it fails to verify identities of employees and thus illegal workers using the identities of other workers who are authorized to work in the U.S. could continue to do so.

For more information on the program see here:

Written by MithrasLaw

September 8, 2009 at 4:51 pm

Secretary Napolitano Announces an Additional $30 Million in Grants to Effectively Enforce Immigration Laws

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Janet Napolitano, Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), announced an additional $30 Million in Operation Stone Garden to support security initiatives along the southwest border, particularly states along the U.S.-Mexico border, which are Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California.

Operation Stonegarden’s
grants will enhance DHS’s capabilities to effectively deter violence, enforce immigration laws and combat illegal trafficking.

The $30 Million additional funds supplement the $60 million in Operation Stonegarden grants announced by Secretary Napolitano in June. Based on greater risk, heavy cross-border traffic and border-related threat intelligence, more than 84 percent of fiscal year 2009 Operation Stonegarden funds will go to the Southwest border—up from 59 percent in fiscal year 2008.

To see the breakup of how much is going to each state see:

Share your opinion:  Do you think this is monies well spent?

Written by MithrasLaw

August 14, 2009 at 2:18 pm

National Name Check Backlog Eliminated

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The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced elimination of FBI National Name Check Program backlog. USCIS Acting Deputy Director Michael Aytes said, “Our close partnership with the FBI has resulted in the accomplishment of this significant achievement with national security as its foundation.”

This means that there will be no backlog for most name check requests and that 98 percent of name check requests submitted by the USCIS to the FBI will be completed within 30 days and the remaining 2 percent within 90 days.

Next steps in the adjudication of cases that were previously delayed as a result a pending FBI name check request may now include updating fingerprint results, scheduling interviews, requesting additional evidence and other reviews to determine whether the applicant is eligible for the requested immigration benefit.

Written by MithrasLaw

June 23, 2009 at 3:29 pm

New H-1B Count for FY 2010

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On May 26, 2009 USCIS updated the count of H-1B petitions received and counted towards the H-1B cap on the USCIS website.

As of May 22, 2009, approximately 45,700 H-1B cap-subject petitions had been received. Also, USCIS has received approximately 20,000 petitions qualifying for the advanced degree cap exemption. USCIS will continue to accept both cap-subject petitions and advanced degree petitions until a sufficient number of H-1B petitions have been received to reach the statutory limits.

Written by MithrasLaw

May 28, 2009 at 3:35 pm

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