In general, when a citizen of a foreign country wishes to enter the United States, the foreign national must first obtain a visa. The visa allows a foreign national to travel to a U.S. port of entry and request permission of a U.S. immigration official to enter the United States. While Canadian Citizens are required to present a valid passport at the port of entry, they typically do not need a visa to enter the United States directly from Canada for the purposes of visiting or studying...
On Tuesday, November 12, 2019, U.S. District Judge Denise Casper in Boston ruled suspicionless searches of traveler’s electronic devices without a warrant is unconstitutional. Judge Casper held U.S. border agents need “reasonable suspicion” to search travelers’ smartphones and laptops at airports and other U.S. ports of entry...
On January 8, 2018, CBP issued Directive No. 3340-049A in order to provide guidance and standard operating procedures for searching, reviewing, retaining and sharing information contained in electronic devices. Among the numerous minor procedural changes, the Directive outlines a few major developments: CBP is no longer permitted to access information stored on the cloud. The policy directive explicitly states that a border search includes the examination of only the information that is “resident upon the device and accessible through the device’s operating system or through other software, tools or applications.” It also states that border agents may not use an electronic device to access information that is stored remotely. This means that cloud data is secure when crossing the border. In fact, it is now required that an electronic device be disconnected from any network prior to a search. The Directive distinguishes between “basic” and “advanced” electronic device searches. A “basic” search is defined as any search of an electronic device that is not an advanced search, and it requires neither a warrant nor any suspicion of wrongdoing. An “advanced” search is defined as “any search in which an Officer connects external equipment, through a wired or wireless connection, to […]
The Department of Homeland Security has recently published a memo unveiling a webpage with a summary of Customs and Border Protection (CBP) enforcement actions related to inadmissibles, apprehensions, arrests of individuals with criminal convictions, and individuals who have been apprehended multiple times crossing the border illegally. CBP is the nation’s largest federal law enforcement agency responsible for securing the nation’s borders and facilitating international travel and trade. Their top priority is to keep terrorists and their weapons from entering the United States. At the country’s more than 300 ports of entry, CBP officers have a complex mission with broad law enforcement authorities tied to screening all foreign visitors, returning American citizens and imported cargo that enters the U.S. Along the country’s borders, the U.S. Border Patrol and Air and Marine Operations are the uniformed law enforcement arms of CBP responsible for securing U.S. borders between ports of entry. On a typical day in fiscal year 2016, U.S. Border Patrol agents apprehended 1,140 individuals along the U.S. border, CBP officers logged 22 arrests of wanted criminals at ports of entry, CBP officers refused entry to 752 individuals who applied for admission at one of our ports of entry, and CBP officers […]
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will shortly be rolling out a mobile app and revising the I-94 website so that individuals at land border crossings (not air and sea) will be able to pre-order a paper I-94 and pay a $6 fee online. The I-94 will be ready for the individual upon arrival, provided he or she is found to be admissible. The $6 fee will be non-refundable. The Mobile App CBP will also be rolling out and expanding a mobile app that is already in use in several airports. The Metropolitan Airports Commission and CBP announced the expansion of Mobile Passport Control (MPC) to the Minneapolis-St. Paul International. Mobile Passport Control is the first authorized app to expedite a traveler’s arrival into the United States. Eligible travelers submit their passport information and customs declaration form to CBP via a smartphone and tablet app prior to arrival. Android and iPhone users can download the Mobile Passport app for free from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. The app does not require pre-approval, is free to use and does not collect any new information from travelers. Travelers opting to use the app or the APC kiosks will no longer […]
Raun Kaul, the managing director of L’Escape Vacations Inc., a destination wedding planning company based in Toronto, was interested in applying for an L-1 visa for a new office in the United States. He wasn’t sure of the immigration process and came to Berardi Immigration looking for guidance on how to go about setting up his business stateside. “I was unsure of the immigration process and what visa, if any, I could apply for,” said Raun. “Rosanna was very patient. She answered many emails, and it took me more than two years from the first time I contacted Rosanna to ensure this was the right move.” Raun really valued the professional network that Berardi Immigration brought to the table. “The one item I really valued (among many) was Rosanna’s contacts for such professionals as a cross border tax accountant and a cross border lawyer. Once I spoke to these people, it was easy from there. I set up my corporation and I was on my way.” After working with Raun on all of the necessary documentation and putting together his application packet, it was time for the border. Our associate attorney, Gabriella Agostinelli, went to the Peace Bridge to meet […]
Following an eventful summer, Berardi Immigration Law has continued to successfully present clients’ cases before Customs & Border Protection (CBP) at the Peace Bridge port of entry. Since September 1, our team has entered an impressive 64 border appearances, each of which was quickly approved. While most of these appearances involved TN and L-1 applications, our firm also presented uncommon matters before CBP. New Petition Following Corporate Name Change A corporate client recently acquired a new business entity, resulting in a corporate name change for the acquired entity. An employee of the acquired entity had previously been approved for TN status on behalf of that entity, but subsequently became an employee of our corporate client following the acquisition. The client turned to us to resolve this discrepancy. Technically, a corporate entity does not need to file a new petition following corporate restructuring as long as (1) the new corporate entity assumes the underlying interests and duties of the acquired entity and (2) the terms and conditions of employee’s employment remain the same. Even if both of these prongs are met, the employee would still need to present a detailed letter and corporate documentation from his or her employer upon each […]