Virginia, US

Nov 22 2017

Weekly Immigration Update: November 17 – 21, 2017

Australia, Ghana, Honduras, Nicaragua, Qatar, Spain, Tunisia , United States

In United States immigration news this week, the Trump Administration will begin temporary partial enforcement of its third travel ban pursuant to a court order of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Certain nationals of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen will be subject to country-specific travel restrictions, with exemptions for travelers with a bona fide relationship to a U.S. person or entity. 

The United States House Judiciary Committee has amended H.R.170, the Protect and Grow American Jobs Act, and referred it to the House floor for further action. Though the bipartisan bill is not expected to become law, its stringent provisions on H-1B dependency and third-party placement of H-1B employees could become a marker for future legislation.

The Trump Administration has taken the initial step required to rescind a rule that offered qualifying international entrepreneurs permission to stay in the United States for up to five years. Also in the United States, the Department of Homeland Security is terminating temporary protected status for Haiti effective July 22, 2019. Haitian TPS beneficiaries will be required to re-register to extend their benefits through the expiration date.

Employers in Ghana must submit their annual reports of foreign workers by January 14, 2018 or face penalties.

Australia's Department of Employment released a draft bulletin which flagged possible changes to the list of occupations eligible for the employer-linked temporary and permanent visa programs. The bulletin is open for public consultation until December 1, 2017 with the changes scheduled to take effect January 1, 2018.

These items and other news from Honduras, Nicaragua, Qatar, Spain and Tunisia follow in this edition of the Fragomen Immigration Update.

 

Important Updates in Immigration This Week

United States, November 21, 2017
The Protect and Grow American Jobs Act: What Employers Need to Know

A bill amended by the House Judiciary Committee and referred to the House floor for further action would subject H-1B dependent employers to more stringent compliance obligations and place new restrictions on their ability to place H-1B employees at third-party worksites. The bill’s third-party placement rules would also impose obligations on the end-clients of H-1B dependent employers.

To view entire article, click here.

 

United States, November 21, 2017
Holiday Travel Planning for Foreign Nationals

If you are a foreign national planning to travel internationally this holiday season, make sure that you have all the necessary documents, including a passport with sufficient remaining validity, a valid U.S. visa in the appropriate classification, and advance permission to travel if necessary. If you will need to apply for a visa while you are abroad, be prepared for possible delays in visa issuance. On reentry to the United States, expect thorough screening at the port of entry.

To view entire article, click here.

 

United States, November 21, 2017
DHS to Terminate TPS for Haiti with 18-Month Delay

Temporary protected status for Haiti will be terminated effective July 22, 2019.  Haitian TPS beneficiaries will be required to re-register to extend their benefits through the expiration date.

To view entire article, click here.

 

United States, November 20, 2017
DHS Submits Proposal To Withdraw International Entrepreneur Rule

The Trump Administration has taken the initial step required to rescind a rule that offered qualifying international entrepreneurs permission to stay in the United States for up to five years.

To view entire article, click here.

 

United States, November 20, 2017
Reminder: FY 2019 Diversity Visa Lottery Registration Ends November 22

Entrants have until Wednesday, November 22, 2017 at noon EST to register online at the State Department’s official lottery website. Lottery applications must conform to the State Department’s strict requirements.

To view entire article, click here.

 

United States, November 20, 2017
State Department Issues Travel Ban Guidance

Pursuant to a court order of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, the Trump Administration will begin temporary partial enforcement of travel restrictions against certain nationals of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen while the Administration appeals lower court rulings against the restrictions. Nationals of the six countries will be exempt from the restrictions if they have a bona fide relationship with a U.S. person or entity.

To view entire article, click here.

 

Honduras, November 21, 2017
Venezuelan Nationals to Require Visa

Effective immediately, Venezuelan nationals will now require a Consulted Visa to enter Honduras, instead of being granted a visa waiver.

To view entire article, click here.

 

Australia, November 20, 2017
Skilled Migration Occupation Lists Flagged for January 2018 Changes

Australia's Department of Employment recently released a draft bulletin which flagged possible changes to the list of occupations eligible for the employer-linked temporary and permanent visa programs. The bulletin is open for public consultation until December 1, 2017 with the changes scheduled to take effect January 1, 2018.

To view entire article, click here.

 

Ghana, November 20, 2017
Reminder to Submit Annual Returns by January 14, 2018

Employers must submit their returns, which are annual reports of foreign workers, by January 14, 2018, or they may face penalties.

To view entire article, click here.

 

Weekly News Briefs

Nicaragua: Iranian Nationals Now Require Consulted Visa for Entry – Effective November 17, 2017, Iranian nationals who were previously visa-exempt now require a Consulted Visa to enter Nicaragua. The Nicaraguan immigration authority must first approve the Consulted Visa before the corresponding consular post can issue the visa, which can take up to 60 days to process. Fragomen can assist foreign nationals with obtaining Consulted Visas.

Qatar: Online Process Implemented for Visa-on-Arrival Extensions – Effective immediately, extensions for visit visas-on-arrival for foreign nationals who have entered Qatar will now be processed through the Ministry of Interior’s on-line portal. Previously, extensions were processed by the Airport Passports Department. Foreign nationals must apply for an extension before their visa expiration date. Those who fail to complete the visa extension process on time will be subject to an overstay fine of QAR 200 for each day of delay.

Spain: Work in Spain Permitted With EU ICT Permit from Other State – The immigration authorities confirmed that in line with the instruction of the European Commission, foreign nationals holding a valid EU ICT Permit obtained in another EU Member State can start work in Spain immediately after submitting a notification to the Large Companies Unit with a copy of their EU ICT Permit from the other EU Member State. They do not have to wait for the notification to process before starting work. Authorities can request additional documentation at their own discretion. Fragomen will keep clients informed on developments, and can help plan an immigration strategy across Europe.

Tunisia: Visit Visas-on-Arrival Available to GCC Residents – Starting November 2017, foreign nationals holding valid residency permits issued by a Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member state (Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates) can now obtain visit visas-on-arrival for tourism for up to 15 days. Visas-on-arrival are free of cost. Requirements for eligible foreign nationals include: a valid passport for the period of intended stay in Tunisia; a GCC residency permit valid for at least six months from the arrival date; a confirmed hotel reservation; and sufficient funds to cover the stay in Tunisia. The issuance of visas-on-arrival will ease entry requirements for these foreign nationals to Tunisia.

 

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This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the global immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen.