A fugitive Chinese businessman was sentenced Friday to one year in prison after he was convicted on two counts of visa fraud for hiding a Marshall Islands passport he held under another name. See Carolina Bolado, Wanted Chinese Businessman Gets One Year for Visa Fraud, Law360 (Oct. 14, 2022) (subscription only). U.S. District Judge Darrin P. Gayles sentenced SHI Jianxiang Shi to 12 months… Continue reading SHI Jianxiang, Wanted in China, Convicted of U.S. Visa Fraud
A Texas federal judge has found to be true allegations of visa fraud by ZTE, a partially state-owned Chinese telecommunications and information technology company. Judge Ed Kindeade’s findings were made in the context of a hearing on whether to revoke ZTE’s probation for violating Iran sanctions. ZTE was on probation after pleading guilty in 2017… Continue reading ZTE Visa Fraud Allegations Found Credible by Texas Federal Judge
This article summarizes the U.S. government’s visa sanctions targeting specific Chinese individuals, companies, and institutions.
A federal judge has given preliminary approval to a settlement between U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and foreign nationals who enrolled in University of Northern New Jersey, a fake school created by the agency as part of an immigration sting. The proposed settlement would resolve claims that ICE violated the due process protections of the… Continue reading Proposed Settlement in University of Northern New Jersey Class Action
Effective Oct. 1, 2021, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) requires applicants to receive a full COVID-19 vaccine series prior to being issued an immigrant visa.
On May 14, President Biden revoked former President Trump’s proclamation requiring that immigrant visa applicants buy health insurance. Proclamation 9945 had never gone into effect because it was tied up in litigation. Plaintiffs in Doe vs. Trump that the proclamation was an unlawful exercise of power reserved for Congress. It would have required immigrant visa… Continue reading Biden Revokes Trump’s Health Insurance Requirement for Immigrant Visa Applicants
Trump’s USCIS public charge rule is dead, and his State Department public charge rule is at death’s door. Here’s the latest announcement, dated Mar. 26, 2021, from the State Department: On July 29, 2020, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York enjoined the Department of State from “enforcing, applying, implementing,… Continue reading State Dep’t Update on Public Charge
DHS has released the below statement that it will no longer pursue appellate review of judicial decisions invalidating or enjoining the Trump administration’s 2019 public charge rule. Once the judicial invalidation of the 2019 rule becomes final, the 1999 interim field guidance on public charge will apply. This is fantastic news, but it does not… Continue reading DHS to Stop Defending Trump’s Public Charge Rule in Court
On Jan. 20, his first day in office, President Biden issued a Presidential Proclamation revoking the travel ban on Muslim-majority countries first put into place by President Trump in 2017. Biden’s proclamation orders the State Department to resume visa processing and to put into place a plan for (a) adjudicating visa applications by persons who… Continue reading Biden Lifts the Travel Ban on Muslim-Majority Countries
If a consular officer denies a visa application, there is no appeal. Still, there may be several ways to challenge a visa denial, such as requesting reconsideration, supervisorial review, or an advisory opinion, or resubmitting the application. If a visa denial cannot be overcome, it may be possible to request a “waiver.” A waiver is somewhat analogous to a pardon in criminal law, in that a waiver forgives an ineligibility, allowing visa issuance.
On Dec. 2, the State Department issued new restrictions on B1/B2 (visitor for business or leisure) visas for members of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and their families. While other Chinese citizens may obtain multiple-entry visas valid for entry within 10 years, under a 2014 reciprocal agreement between Presidents Obama and Xi Jinping, CCP members… Continue reading State Dep’t Limits B (Visitor) Visa Validity for Communist Party Members
During the Trump administration, immigration lawyers have become accustomed to “shock by memo,” meaning backdoor rules announced by government memo with no prior notice, typically on a Friday afternoon, which leave us scrambling to help clients understand how the new rules may apply to applications filed months or years ago under a different memo. On… Continue reading USCIS Policy Manual Update on Immigrant Membership in the Communist Party
Visa bans based on Communist Party membership–like any bans based on ideology or associaiton–are an unnecessary, and most damaging, legacy of the McCarthy era.
The President has issued a May 29, 2020, Proclamation on the Suspension of Entry as Nonimmigrants of Certain Students and Researchers from the People’s Republic of China.The proclamation appears to be counter-productive, a distraction from real measures needed to fight Beijing’s theft of sensitive technologies, and an attempt to boost Trump’s electoral odds by stoking xenophobia.
Did you think the Cold War was over? The U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act still makes inadmissible (i.e., ineligible) for permanent residence and citizenship certain persons who have been members of or affiliated with the Communist Party. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has some 80 million members, so this ground of ineligibility is a key… Continue reading Communist Party Membership Makes Some Ineligible for U.S. Green Card and Citizenship
For the uninitiated, “administrative processing” (AP) is State Department-speak for a temporary visa refusal pending further investigation of a visa application. (9 FAM Appendix E, 404). The applicant typically learns of the temporary refusal when, at the conclusion of the interview, the consular officer issues a written notice stating that under section 221(g) of the Immigration… Continue reading “Administrative Processing”: a Black Hole for Visa Applicants
The State Department has published a Jan. 24 rule taking aim at birth tourism. The rule prohibits issuance of a B-2 (visitor for pleasure) visa if the applicant’s primary purpose for traveling to the U.S. is to gain citizenship for a child by giving birth in the U.S. The new rule will not prohibit pregnant… Continue reading “Birth Tourism” Restricted by New State Department Rule
The CDC has announced: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will implement enhanced health screenings to detect ill travelers traveling to the United States on direct or connecting flights from Wuhan, China. This activity is in response to an outbreak in China… Continue reading U.S. Airports to Screen Wuhan Flights for Coronavirus
An individual who an immigration officer or consular officer has determined is inadmissible to the United States as an immigrant or to adjust status in the United States, and certain nonimmigrant applicants who are deemed inadmissible, must file the Form I-601, Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility, to seek a waiver of certain grounds of inadmissibility.
To be issued a visa and admitted to the U.S. at a port of entry, a foreign national must generally not fall within a list of classes of persons who are to be prohibited entry to the U.S. This list is known as the “grounds of inadmissibility.”