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Berardi Blog

The Berardi Immigration Law blog – find all our posts here.

Immigration Court Scheduling

The first hearing in Immigration Court is called the Master Calendar hearing.  At this hearing the person summoned to court (the respondent) pleads to the government’s allegations.  The respondent, with or without an attorney, also states the forms of relief he or she plans to seek in regards to the allegations.  Examples of relief include: […]

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Removal Proceedings Basic Terms

Apprehension: The arrest of a removable alien by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Each apprehension of the same alien in a fiscal year is counted separately. Cancellation of Removal: A discretionary benefit adjusting an alien’s status from that of deportable alien to one lawfully admitted for permanent residence. Application for cancellation of removal is […]

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Special Recruitment for University Professors Under PERM (Labor Certification)

What is Labor Certification and PERM? The Immigration and Nationality Act §212(a)(5)(A) requires individual labor certification by the U.S. Department of Labor before a foreign national enters the U.S. to perform skilled or unskilled labor.  The labor certification reports to the Attorney General that there are not sufficient U.S. workers available for the proposed employment, […]

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Diversity Lottery Program

Green Card Lottery Each year, the Diversity Lottery (DV) Program makes 50,000 immigrant visas available through a lottery to people who come from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States.  Please note that Canadians are NOT eligible to enter this lottery. The law and regulations require that every diversity visa entrant must […]

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Employment-Based Immigration

Obtaining permanent residency through employment is a multi-step process.  First, foreign nationals and employers must determine if the foreign national is eligible for lawful permanent residency under one of USCIS’ paths to lawful permanent residency. Second, most employment categories require that the U.S. employer complete a labor certification request (Form ETA 9089) for the applicant, […]

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Family-Based Immigration

Obtaining permanent residency through a family member is a multi-step process.  First, an immigrant visa petition must be filed.  Form I-130 is a Petition for Alien Relative.  It is filed by the sponsoring relative for the immigrating beneficiary. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will either approve or deny the petition. If the I-130 petition is […]

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Work Options for Foreign Students

OPTIONAL PRACTICAL TRAINING As an international student, you may be able to work in the U.S. in conjunction with your studies. Work authorization for international students is known as Optional Practical Training (“OPT”). OPT is intended to enhance a student’s academic experience with practical, on-the-job training. You may be eligible for OPT if: you are […]

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Becoming a Student in the U.S.

Who is Allowed to Study in the United States ? A nonimmigrant is someone admitted to the U.S. temporarily for a specific purpose. People who are coming to the United States to pursue full-time academic or vocational studies are usually admitted in one of two nonimmigrant categories. The F-1 category includes academic students in colleges, […]

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Bringing your Spouse to the U.S.

  Information for Citizens If you are a U.S. citizen, your spouse is considered an immediate relative and is immediately eligible for an immigrant visa if your petition is approved. Generally, if your spouse is in the U.S. (through a lawful admission or parole) at the time you file the Form I-130, Petition for Alien […]

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K-1 Fiance(e) Visa Additional Information

 . Who is Eligible U.S. citizens who will be getting married to a foreign national in the United States may petition for a fiancé(e) classification (K-1) for their fiancé(e). You and your fiancé(e) must be free to marry. This means that both of you are unmarried, or that any previous marriages have ended through divorce, […]

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K-1 Fiance(e) Visa Overview

The K-1 visa permits the fiancé(e) of a U.S. citizen to enter the United States for a 90-day admission period in which the couple must marry and then apply for adjustment of status to permanent residence. The K-1 is actually a nonimmigrant visa classification designed to facilitate the admission of intending immigrants to the U.S. […]

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J-1 Exchange Visitors

Obtaining an Exchange Visitor Visa According to the U.S. Department of State, the Exchange Visitor Program aims to: “Increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of other countries by means of educational and cultural exchanges.” Through the program, the U.S. government provides an unlimited number of exchange visitor visas, called […]

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Musicians, Athletes & Performers (O-1 & P-1)

P-1 Athlete The P-1 classification applies to an alien coming to the U.S. temporarily to perform at a specific athletic competition as an athlete , individually or as part of a group or team, at an internationally recognized level of performance. Petition Document Requirements A U.S. employer should file the I-129 petition with: A written […]

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Religious Workers (R-1)

The R-1 classification applies to a religious worker . This is an alien coming to the U.S. temporarily to work: As a minister of religion, As a professional in a religious vocation or occupation, or For a bona fide nonprofit religious organization at the request of the organization, in a religious occupation which relates to […]

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Entering the U.S. as an Investor (E-1 & E-2)

The E nonimmigrant visa category is intended for business owners, managers, and employees who seek to enter or remain in the U.S. to work for an enterprise engaged in trade between the U.S. and a foreign country. The E nonimmigrant category is only available if a “treaty of commerce and navigation” or a “bilateral investment […]

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