Immigration Update

March, 2013                                                                Vol. 5 Issue 3

In the March Update
The New Form I-9 and M-274 are Here!
Unlawful Presence Waiver in Effect
2013 April Visa Bulletin
Draft Immigration Bill Leaked
E-Verify Earns High Marks
Mandating E-Verify Bills in Committees
New and Noteworthy
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Giselle Carson Bio Pic

Giselle Carson


The New Form I-9 and M-274 are Here!
USICS has released a revised Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 for use. Click here to read official bulletin.  Employers can start using the new form now.  However, there is a 60 day grace period for transitioning.  We recommend to utilize this time for training and education on the new form.  Employers must start using the new form for new hires and reverification purposes by May 8, 2013. The updated form is two pages and includes revisions aimed at reducing errors and facilitate completion. Employees should complete section one which is all in the first page.  Employers complete sections two and three in the second page.   We recommend printing the form as a two-sided document to avoid misplacing a page.  To assist employers on completing the new form I-9, USICS also released an updated version of the "Handbook for Employers (M-274).  Please click here to read the entire handbook. We will continue to provide guidance and keep you updated as information becomes available.
Unlawful Presence Waiver in Effect
Starting March 4, certain unlawfully present individuals can apply for an unlawful presence waiver before departing the U.S. to process their immigrant visa at a consulate abroad.
To qualify, individuals must:
-be 17 years of age or older;
-be a spouse, child or parent of U.S. citizen (immediate relative);
-be inadmissible only due to the unlawful presence;
-demonstrate extreme hardship to a qualifying relative;
-have an approved I-130 or I-360; and
-not be currently in removal proceedings.
Because of the strict eligibility criteria and potential for removal action, it is strongly advised to consult with an immigration attorney before filing an I-601A waiver. To read more, click here.
April Visa Bulletin

US Visa

 The 2013 April Visa Bulletin is now out. In the EB-2 category, India's priority date remained the same and China's cutoff date was extended to April 1, 2008. The EB-3 Category showed Philippines date extended to September 8, 2006. To read the bulletin in its entirety, click here

White House Draft of Immigration
Bill Leaked
Portions of a draft of an immigration bill from the President's desk were leaked to the press, putting pressure on Congress to deliver a bill of their own.  The sections released included those relating to an eight year long path to citizenship for current undocumented immigrants, increased border security, and mandatory E-Verify regulations. What wasn't included in the leaked draft was a plan to alter the current immigration system. This will most certainly be a point of contention between members of Congress, as they decide how to handle the future flow of immigrants and visas. To read more, click here.
E-Verify Earns High Customer Satisfaction
The survey showed high satisfaction and confidence in this electronic program aimed at assisting employers to verify workers' employment status. More than 1,300 E-Verify users evaluated key program aspects such as registration, online training, ease of use, technical assistance and customer service. E-Verify received a customer satisfaction score of 86/100, which is a one point improvement from the 2011 survey results, and 19 points above other federal programs' average. E-Verify received scores over 90/100 for its ease of use and speed of response, and users were very likely to recommend the tool to their fellow employers.  These positive results will be considered in the debates and the movement to make the program mandatory for all employers.  To read more about the survey, please click here.  
Mandating E-Verify Bills in Committees

H.R. 478, also called "E-Verify Modernization Act of 2013", sponsored by Phil Gingrey (R-GA) proposes "to make the E-Verify Program permanent and mandatory and to provide for certain changes to procedures for participants in the Program."  This proposed bill provides that employers would be able to withhold training and pay to an employee until a confirmation of eligibility is determined.

S.202, called "Accountability Through Electronic Verification Act", sponsored by Charles E. Grassley (R-IA) aims to "expand the use of E-Verify and to hold employers accountable." This bill would also make E-Verify mandatory and include the verification of current employees; drastically increase fines on employers in violation; and allow employers to pre-verify the work authorization status of the employee.  We will continue to track the E-Verify bills and requirements and will provide updates. 




Keeping my focus!


26.2 with Donna On Sunday morning, February 17,  I joined

aproximately 10,000 runners in the 6th annual 26.2 with Donna,

 the National Marathon to Finish Breast Cancer. I feel honored to participate in a world class event that raises funds for research and aid for those with breast cancer.  


 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.