Now that it is clear that Donald Trump will be the 45th President of the United States, questions are continuously being asked about how the regime change when he takes office in January of 2017 will impact labor and employment law. Acknowledging that any discussion of Trump’s policies before he takes office on Jan. 20, 2017 is purely speculation, it is important for employers to consider the potential implications on labor and employment law.
Continue Reading November election results likely will significantly impact labor and employment law in coming years

Special thanks to summer associate Sara Schiavone for her work on this blog post.

Human resource professionals who are managing the immigration processing for Indian nonimmigrant employees should be aware of the increased processing times for the visa application at consulates in India. The extraordinary increase in routine processing for nonimmigrant visas requires significantly more planning to avoid long periods of non-productivity while employees are stranded abroad waiting for a visa appointment.

It was not that long ago that one week was seen as a standard timeframe to receive an interview appointment. However, applicants now experience wait times as long as four months. As of July 2016, current wait times for nonimmigrant visa (NIV) interview appointments other than B (visitor), F (student) and J (exchange visitor) at the following consular posts are:
Continue Reading Long wait times for Indian nonimmigrant visas merit human resources planning

It is again the time for U.S. employers to begin considering filing H-1B petitions for prospective new foreign national employees. These petitions can be submitted to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on or after April 1, 2016 for employment beginning no earlier than Oct. 1, 2016, the beginning of the government’s 2017 fiscal year. The H-1B visa category provides for the temporary employment of foreign nationals who will work in “specialty occupations,” or those jobs for which at least a bachelor’s degree in a particular field is required, such as engineers, teachers, accountants, and many professional information technology positions.. The problem is that there are only 85,000 H-1B visas available each year and we again expect, as in years past, for these numbers to be quickly claimed.

Continue Reading Employer alert: a new H-1B filing season brings hope and anxiety

2016 has arrived, marking the beginning of a year of political transition. While we cannot be certain what the upcoming Presidential election holds for 2017, we can expect to see at least seven employment law trends as we move through this year.

1. Increase in Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) initiatives and enforcement

The Department

In November 2014, President Obama spoke on prime time television to explain his promise to issue executive orders and fix as much of the dysfunctional immigration system as could be done without Congressional action. The press and Republicans in Congress criticized the program to grant “deferred action” to a significant percentage of the undocumented population (and litigation has put that element on hold), but largely overlooked the several initiatives to reform the employment-based immigration system.  While the reforms outlined in November 2014 were little more than duct tape and chewing gum designed to provide modest improvement to a fully dysfunctional system, they nevertheless promised some relief to many of the long suffering applicants for permanent resident status. The State Department has finally offered its version of reform through the “modernization” of the monthly Visa Bulletin. While this duct tape may hold the process together a little while longer, eventually Congress must get serious about immigration reform. Until then, this change is a welcome effort to make the process just a little bit easier for some of the individuals subject to the long delays.
Continue Reading State Department revises Visa Bulletin cutoff dates

Effective May 26, 2015, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin processing applications to grant employment authorization for certain H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrant workers.  The application for employment authorization (Form I-765) must be submitted to USCIS, in paper form only, with the filing fee of $380 and supporting documents showing eligibility for

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Breakfast Briefing: Defining Your Company’s Immigration Policy

Like never before, in order to compete in today’s global marketplace, companies need to ensure they have the best talent with the skillset that will help distinguish them from their competition. Many companies find that the best talent may not be around the corner and companies must look

On February 24, 2015, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that certain H-4 dependent spouses of H-1B nonimmigrant workers pursuing employment-based lawful permanent resident (LPR) status will be eligible for employment authorization beginning May 26, 2015.

This announcement follows the Executive Action announced by President

A new year brings new challenges and opportunities, especially for U.S. employers, and it is now time to begin considering filing H-1B petitions for prospective new foreign national employees. These petitions can be submitted to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on or after April 1, 2015 for employment beginning no earlier than October 1,