High Skilled

The immigration laws and regulations provide some avenues to apply for lawful status from within the U.S. or to seek relief from deportation.  The eligibility requirements for these benefits and relief can be stringent, and the immigration agencies often adopt overly restrictive interpretations of the requirements.  Learn about advocacy and litigation that has been and can be undertaken to ensure that noncitizens have a fair chance to apply for the benefits and relief for which they are eligible.  

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All High Skilled Content

April 6, 2018
This fact sheet provides an overview of the H-1B visa category and petition process, addresses the myths perpetuated about the H-1B visa category, and highlights the key contributions H-1B workers...
March 26, 2018
Temporary workers—such as those in H-1B status—typically can bring their spouses and children with them to the United States in what is called H-4 status. This fact sheet provides an overview of the...
January 17, 2018
U.S. immigration policies significantly limit the ability of these doctors to immigrate to and practice in the United States. As policy-makers debate what immigration reforms would best serve the...
December 14, 2017
This wage calculation is at the heart of the employment-based immigration system Congress devised to protect U.S. workers from unfair competition, while refraining from micromanaging the hiring...
September 13, 2017
This fact sheet describes the legal avenues in the United States available to promising entrepreneurs, as well as some of the barriers they face securing immigration status through these paths.
August 11, 2017
The Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act (RAISE Act) or S. 354 would mark a sweeping overhaul of the U.S. immigration system. It would significantly reduce levels of legal...
June 14, 2017
Foreign-born workers make up a growing share of the country’s STEM workforce and are critical to the country’s innovation, and STEM workers are responsible for many of the cutting-edge ideas and...
February 2, 2016
The Immigrant Investor Program, also known as “EB-5,” has become an increasingly important source of investment for development projects in the United States, attracting billions of dollars to the U...
December 14, 2015

Americans pride themselves on belonging to a nation of immigrants. In fact, many Americans celebrate not only the traditions of the United States, but the traditions of the countries from which...

May 13, 2013
How High-Skilled Immigrants Create Jobs and Help Build the U.S. Economy With the U.S. economy still recovering, it may seem counterintuitive to believe that any industry would benefit from having...

On behalf of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the American Immigration Council filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) challenging U.S. Citizenship and...

Prioritizing the immigration of multinational executives and managers recognizes the need for the United States to remain competitive in an increasingly global economy.
February 28, 2017
The Council filed an amicus brief in a case pending before the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO), an administrative body at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that reviews denials of most employment-based visa petitions.

On behalf of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the Council, in cooperation with Hughes Socol Piers Resnick & Dym, Ltd., filed a lawsuit against USCIS and DHS seeking the...

Faced with increasing reports from immigration lawyers of EAD adjudication delays, the Council and several partners filed this lawsuit against USCIS and DHS.
Valorem, an IT consulting company, petitioned to employ a software developer for three years in H-1B status as part of a project development team at its office. Initially, USCIS denied the petition, but later – after Valorem, represented by AILA member Susan Bond, filed suit – approved it for one year.
November 7, 2013
The Council and AILA filed an amicus brief in an en banc case pending before BALCA, an administrative body at the Department of Labor that reviews denials of PERM labor certifications. The case turned on the proper interpretation of a regulation which requires employers to notify certain laid-off U.S. employees about new job opportunities before the employers are permitted to hire foreign workers. The brief focused on the agency’s failure to provide fair warning before applying a new, more restrictive interpretation of the notification requirement.
On behalf of AILA, the American Immigration Council, in cooperation with counsel at Steptoe & Johnson LLP, filed a FOIA lawsuit against DHS and USCIS in July 2010 seeking the public release of records concerning agency policies and procedures related to fraud investigations in the H-1B program.

On behalf of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the Council, in cooperation with counsel at Steptoe & Johnson LLP, filed a FOIA lawsuit in July...

In May 2012, the American Immigration Council filed a FOIA request seeking records issued by USCIS and/or DHS, or used by USCIS and/or DHS, from January 2008 to the...

August 20, 2018
This Practice Advisory has information practitioners need to assess whether filing suit in federal court is the right option for challenging an employment-based petition denial.
February 13, 2017
This Practice Advisory provides a broad overview of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), including how to make a FOIA request and how to appeal an inadequate response. It discusses the...
September 26, 2016
This Practice Advisory discusses whether and how a person can get review of a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services decision in federal court if he or she did not appeal the decision to the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO). The Advisory addresses the Supreme Court case Darby v. Cisneros, holding that a plaintiff is not required to exhaust non-mandatory administrative remedies in certain situations, and how it may apply to cases involving appeals to the AAO.
September 14, 2016

This Practice Tip demystifies mandamus by explaining how and when to ask a court for this remedy when a client has been waiting too long for USCIS to make a decision.

July 27, 2016
This Practice Tip analyzes the pros and cons of appealing to the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) following the denial of an employment-based visa petition.
May 25, 2016
This Practice Tip explains how practitioners can turn a Request for Evidence (RFE) into an opportunity to strengthen the administrative record through a thoughtful and thorough response.
April 1, 2016
This Practice Tip outlines how you can build a strong administrative record to set the stage for challenging the denial of a client's visa petition in federal court.
November 6, 2015

This Practice Advisory provides basic information about mandamus actions and suggests strategies and practice tips for bringing a mandamus action against the Department of Labor (DOL).

June 20, 2013
This Practice Advisory discusses the primary issues involved in a suit brought under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) to challenge an unlawful agency action. The Advisory provides examples of how these issues have been decided in immigration cases and arguments that can be made to meet the various procedural requirements for an APA action.
June 1, 2008

This Practice Advisory offers a short introduction to habeas corpus, addressing when and how a petitioner may file a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the immigration context.

August 22, 2018

Many immigrants bring advanced expertise when they come to the United States, but those skills are often underutilized. Due to a range of complex factors, such as professional credentialing and...

May 31, 2018

The Trump administration continued its shortsighted attack on businesses this week, indicating it will end a rule allowing foreign entrepreneurs to grow start-up companies in the United States....

May 23, 2018

In a rare show of bipartisanship, 130 members of Congress sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirsten Nielsen urging her to maintain the current regulation granting...

May 10, 2018

As U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) begins adjudicating H-1B petitions subject to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 “cap,”—the annual limit on the number of visas that will be made...

April 13, 2018

The United States has long been the country of choice for international physicians seeking a graduate medical education. But for the second year in a row, the number of foreign doctors who applied...

April 6, 2018

Demonstrating a critical demand for educated foreign workers in the United States, the annual H-1B cap has been reached within 5 business days. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services...

March 27, 2018

As part of the April 2017 “Buy American and Hire American” executive order, the Trump administration announced that it intends to revoke the employment eligibility of the spouses of foreign...

January 17, 2018

There are more than 247,000 doctors with medical degrees from foreign countries practicing in the United States. A fourth of all physicians in the nation are foreign-trained—the majority of whom...

October 16, 2017

Among the laundry list of proposed restrictions and other attacks on immigration, the Trump administration is reportedly considering cuts to the Exchange Visitor Program (EVP) and therefore...

August 11, 2017

The Reforming American Immigration for a Strong Economy Act (RAISE Act) seeks to dramatically reshape American immigration by favoring youth and a narrow set of skills over family values and...

August 2, 2018
A judge ordered last week that United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) must adjudicate work authorization applications for asylum seekers within the prescribed 30-day deadline.
July 19, 2017
U.S. District Court Judge James Robert granted a motion to certify a nationwide class in Northwest Immigrant Rights Project v. USCIS, recognizing that USCIS must adjudicate asylum seekers’ employment authorization applications within 30 days if they are submitted in a timely manner.
May 23, 2016

shington D.C. - The American Immigration Council (Council) and the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) have teamed up on a lawsuit against the U.S.

March 17, 2015

Washington D.C. - Today, the American Immigration Council's Executive Director, Benjamin Johnson, testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee about the integral role immigration plays in

November 19, 2012

For Immediate Release

LAC Wins Release of H-1B Fraud Documents for AILA

June 9, 2011

Washington D.C. - Today, the Brookings Institution released a new report,

April 13, 2011

Washington D.C. - A recent ruling from a federal judge in

August 22, 2018

Many immigrants bring advanced expertise when they come to the United States, but those skills are often underutilized. Due to a range of complex factors, such as professional credentialing and...

August 20, 2018
This Practice Advisory has information practitioners need to assess whether filing suit in federal court is the right option for challenging an employment-based petition denial.
August 2, 2018
A judge ordered last week that United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) must adjudicate work authorization applications for asylum seekers within the prescribed 30-day deadline.

On behalf of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the American Immigration Council filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) challenging U.S. Citizenship and...

May 31, 2018

The Trump administration continued its shortsighted attack on businesses this week, indicating it will end a rule allowing foreign entrepreneurs to grow start-up companies in the United States....

May 23, 2018

In a rare show of bipartisanship, 130 members of Congress sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirsten Nielsen urging her to maintain the current regulation granting...

May 10, 2018

As U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) begins adjudicating H-1B petitions subject to the Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 “cap,”—the annual limit on the number of visas that will be made...

April 13, 2018

The United States has long been the country of choice for international physicians seeking a graduate medical education. But for the second year in a row, the number of foreign doctors who applied...

April 6, 2018

Demonstrating a critical demand for educated foreign workers in the United States, the annual H-1B cap has been reached within 5 business days. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services...

April 6, 2018
This fact sheet provides an overview of the H-1B visa category and petition process, addresses the myths perpetuated about the H-1B visa category, and highlights the key contributions H-1B workers...

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