It’s Official: New York State Will Aid Undocumented Students

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has confirmed he will sign into law a new measure passed by the New York State Senate. The bill offers undocumented students access to state financial aid and scholarships for higher education.


New York Democrats became a majority in the State Senate in November after a decade of being a minority. Immigration protections are now on the front of their agenda. The new bill constitutes a pro-immigrant countermeasure to President Trump’s federal immigration policies that have been seeking to undo the protections of The Dream Act, put into place by the Obama administration over ten years ago.

The provisions of the new law will include allowing undocumented residents to obtain state driver’s licenses and reducing maximum jail sentences for certain misdemeanors that could otherwise lead to deportation.

” The New York bill will affect an estimated 146,000 young people who were educated in New York public schools but have been ineligible to receive financial aid under federal and state law, according to analysis by the New York State Youth Leadership Council and N.Y.U. Law School’s Immigrant Rights Clinic. ” – notes the New York Times in an article yesterday.

Read the entire article HERE.

The Immigration Offices of Leslie I. Snyder, P.A. strive to keep our clients informed with the latest developments affecting US Immigration policies. We provide assistance on immigration issues ranging from family integration, immigrant and non-immigrant visas, business, employment, adjustment of status, citizenship.

Lapse in Federal Funding Does Not Impact Most USCIS Operations

The current lapse in annual appropriated funding for the U.S. government does not affect USCIS’s fee-funded activities. Our offices will remain open, and all individuals should attend interviews and appointments as scheduled. USCIS will continue to accept petitions and applications for benefit requests, except as noted below.

Some USCIS programs, however, will either expire or suspend operations, or be otherwise affected, until they receive appropriated funds or are reauthorized by Congress. These include:

  • EB-5 Immigrant Investor Regional Center Program (not the EB-5 Program). Regional centers are a public or private economic unit in the U.S. that promotes economic growth. USCIS designates regional centers for participation in the Immigrant Investor Program. The EB-5 Program will continue to operate.
  • E-Verify. This free internet-based system allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the U.S.
  • Conrad 30 Waiver Program for J-1 medical doctors. This program allows J-1 doctors to apply for a waiver of the two-year residence requirement after completing the J-1 exchange visitor program. The expiration only affects the date by which the J-1 doctor must have entered the U.S.; it is not a shutdown of the Conrad 30 program entirely.
  • Non-minister religious workers. This special immigrant category allows non-ministers in religious vocations and occupations to immigrate or adjust to permanent resident status in the U.S. to perform religious work in a full-time, compensated position.

(USCIS Advisory)

Immigration Declines to Lowest Level in Over a Decade

New data analysis by the Pew Research Center shows the number of unauthorized immigrants in the US at its lowest in over a decade. The detailed article appeared on November 27th, 2018 on Pew Research Center Hispanic Trends

“There were 10.7 million unauthorized immigrants living in the U.S. in 2016, down from a peak of 12.2 million in 2007” – the analysis shows.

  • The sharp drop was mainly due to a sharp decline in the number of new unauthorized immigrants, especially Mexicans, coming into the country.
  • You can read the in-depth study HERE. Below are a few highlights that are worth noticing:
  • More than a million unauthorized immigrants have temporary protection from deportation
  • A rising share of unauthorized immigrants arrive legally, but overstay visas
  • Number of recent arrivals declines
  • Border apprehensions of Mexicans decline, but rise for Central Americans
  • About 5 million U.S.-born children live with unauthorized immigrant parents

Our Firm is ready to help with your immigration issue no matter where you are in the process. We stay on top of the latest immigration developments. An informed and up-to-date attorney is a powerful ally you will want to have. Please feel to contact us  by email or phone for your immigration related questions.

Actualizacion de las Politicas de USCIS

USCIS está actualizando las guías de políticas en el Manual de Políticas de USCIS para eliminar las referencias a Información Biográfica (Formulario G-325A). USCIS antes requería que aquellas personas que solicitaban ciertos beneficios de inmigración presentaran el Formulario G-325A junto con su solicitud o petición. USCIS ahora ha incorporado todas versiones del Formulario G-325A dentro de los formularios de USCIS que anteriormente lo requerían por separado. Ahora el Formulario G-325A solo se utiliza para peticiones de acción diferida para ciertos reclutas y familiares designados de cierto personal militar, veteranos, y reclutas. Por lo tanto, USCIS cambió el nombre de dicho formulario a “Formulario G-325A, Información Biográfica (para Acción Diferida)”. La guía actualizada en las Partes A, F, L, M, y O del Volumen 7: Ajuste de Estatus del Manual de Políticas elimina todas las referencias al Formulario G-325A.

Los interesados pueden revisar y enviar sus comentarios sobre la guía de políticas revisada hasta el 7 de noviembre de 2018. Por favor, visite el Alerta de Políticas para más información acerca de esta actualización.

Viste la página Comentario al Manual de Políticas para más información acerca de las revisiones y envío de comentarios de los grupos interesados.

EB-5 Policy Changes Update

Final Rule Announcement Expected November 2018

The U.S. Office of Management and Budget has published its Fall 2018 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions, which contains updated timetables for two proposed EB-5 regulations and advance notice of a third. The regulation of greatest concern is RIN: 1615-AC07, “EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program Modernization.”

This regulation has moved into the final rule stage and is expected to be published in November 2018, becoming effective soon thereafter.

Significance of EB-5 Program Modernization Final Rule

If made final in November, the proposed rule could go into effect by the end of 2018. Petitions filed before the effective date of the final rule are expected to qualify under current policy, but once the final rule goes into effect, petitions will be subject to any changes to the EB-5 Program.

Anticipated Program Changes

The exact EB-5 policy changes made by this rule will not be known until a final rule is published, but the rule as drafted in the notice of proposed rulemaking included the following primary changes:

  1. An increase to the minimum investment threshold: from $1,000,000 to $1,800,000 for standard investments and from $500,000 to $1,350,000 for investments in targeted employment areas (TEAs)
  2. A shift in TEA designation authority from individual states to the Department of Homeland Security
  3. A refined definition of “targeted employment area” to include metropolitan statistical areas, counties, cities, single census tracts, and limited groups of census tracts experiencing high unemployment rates
  4. Under certain circumstances, the ability for investors with approved I-526 Petitions to keep their priority dates while filing new I-526 Petitions
  5. The ability for spouses and children of petitioners to file I-829 Petitions even if they are not named on the investor’s petition

Significance of Final Rule Modification

If made final in November, the proposed rule could go into effect by the end of 2018. Petitions filed before the effective date of the final rule are expected to qualify under current policy, but once the final rule goes into effect, petitions will be subject to any changes to the EB-5 Program.

(Information from EB-5 Affiliate Network update)