Immigration Update

August 2012                                                          Vol. 4 Issue 7

In the August 2012 Issue
Revision of Form I-9
DREAM's Come True
Pennsylvania, the latest to E-Verify!
ESTA Allows Multiple Applications
New U.S. and Canadian Initiatives
Avoid EAD Denials
New and Noteworthy
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Giselle Carson's Biography

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Revision of Form I-9 on Hold 

USCIS just announced, until further notice, employers should continue using the current Form I-9 available in the forms section on uscis.gov., even after the OMB expiration date of August 31, 2012 (located in the upper right corner of the form) has passed. USCIS will provide updated information about the new version of Form I-9 when it becomes available. Employers must complete Form I-9 for all newly-hired employees to verify their identity and authorization to work in the U.S.  To learn more, go to I-9 Central, here

The DREAM For Some Immigrants May Come True

Beginning August 15, certain undocumented youths can apply for deferred action under  "Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals" (DACA) by submitting specific forms and information to USCIS.

DACA allows certain people who came to the U.S. as children and meet several key guidelines to request consideration of deferred action for a period of two years  and  apply for work authorization.  DACA does not provide amnesty, legal status or a pathway to a green card.  Applicants should consult with an immigration attorney before filing their applications.  Click here for more information. 

Pennsylvania is the Latest State to require E-Verify for Contractors
The Public Works Employment Verification Act (Act. No. 127) requires  that as of January 1, 2013 all contractors and subcontractors participating in public works projects in the state of Pennsylvania must participate in E-Verify.   Proponents say that the Act will help the state's unemployment rate and ensure that taxpayer funded projects are executed by authorized workers. "Public work" is defined as "construction, reconstruction, demolition, alteration and/or repair work other than maintenance work, done under contract and paid for in whole or in part out of the funds of a public body where the estimated cost of the total project is in excess of twenty-five thousand dollars ($25,000), but shall not include work performed under a rehabilitation or manpower training program." To read more, click here
Group Travelers Can Submit Multiple ESTA Applications

Effective August 15th, families and group travelers can submit multiple ESTA applications under one Group ID and one payment. This will increase efficiencies and decrease redundancy for groups and families traveling together. CBP still recommends applying at least 72 hours prior to departure to ensure smooth processing. For more information on the new program, click here.


New U.S. and Canadian Initiatives
The U.S.-Canada Beyond the Border program includes 32 initiatives to promote perimeter security and economic competitiveness. The plan calls for improvements  for NEXUS members, enhancements to border infrastructure and facilities, implementation of additional pre-clearance initiatives and enhance border wait-time technology at high-priority border crossings.  The plan is also intended to   heighten the exchange of information which may cause an increase in questioning at the border for some travelers.  If you are planning to travel  to and from Canada, please prepare  for possible increased questioning. To read the announcement, click here


How to Avoid EAD Denials for OPT

DHS LogoUSCIS recent restrictive approach to filing deadlines for F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT) applications is resulting in unexpected denials.  USCIS position is if an EAD application is submitted more than 30 days after the DSO's recommendation of OPT in SEVIS, the application should be denied. Thus, students should submit their EAD applications on time to avoid potential denials. For more Q&A on F-1 OPT applications, click here.



 Marks Gray sponsored and a number of our attorneys participated in the 2012 Children's Way 5K After Dark in July. Marks Gray has been an active member for many years of the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Jacksonville.  Marks Gray associate, Michael D. Kendall currently serves on the Board of Directors. 

Attorney Michael Kendall and runner.


Marks Gray attorney, Mary Bland Love, organizes firm wide gift drives for the troops serving Afghanistan. She recently sent three large boxes of magazines, playing cards, books and DVD's to the men and women serving our country. Since many of the troops stays have been extended she is planning another drive in the Fall. If you are interested in contributing, please contact Shannon Gibbs at  smg@marksgray.com


I recently published an article in the Jacksonville publication, The Financial News and Daily Record. The article titled, 'What is Your Ultimate Currency' offers readers tips on work/balance issues, building happiness boosters, creating positive rituals and cultivating an attitude of gratitude.  And, on that note, Thank you to all of our readers and clients.  We appreciate your support, business and confidence!  To read the entire article, click here.




 GC Signature
Giselle Carson
Attorney at Law
Marks Gray, P.A.
1200 Riverplace Blvd., Suite 800
Jacksonville, FL 32207
(904) 398-0900
If you need assistance with any immigration-related issues, please contact Giselle Carson or Thyra Reveron at (904) 398-0900.

Marks Gray, P.A. is dedicated to customer service. We monitor proposed and current developments in the law. The contents of this newsletter are not intended as legal advice related to individual situations. If you have any questions about your particular situation, please contact a lawyer.