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USCIS Paying Increased Attention To Status Violations When Adjudicating Applications for Immigration Benefits

October 11, 2006- USCIS issued a memorandum providing internal guidance on exercising discretion to issue Notices to Appear to aliens applying for immigration benefits. Notices to Appear constitute initiation of Removal Proceedings. In addition, public statements by USCIS officials are paying increased attention to the inherent authority of USCIS to issue Notices To Appear when adjudicating applications for benefits, particularly in the context of filing a family-based immigrant (I-130) petition where the alien beneficiary is not in status. It is expected that USCIS will be increasing the number of NTAs it issues.

Effective October 1, 2006, if a visa applicant appears to be out of status when the USCIS denies an application, the USCIS is supposed to issue a notice to appear (NTA) to have the person appear in removal proceedings.

If this new policy is true, it may force noncitizens to keep their underlying statuses in effect while they pursue a green card. For example, many adjustment of status applicants currently do not maintain their underlying B1 or other work visa status while their adjustment of status application is pending, relying instead on advance parole and interim work authorization. Based on the new USCIS policy, doing that may expose them to removal proceedings if their adjustment application is denied.

Client Reviews
Great immigration lawyer, very professional, knowledgeable and experienced. Jacob always answered my questions, e-mails and calls; great customer service from him and everybody at his office. I highly recommend Jacob, probably the best immigration lawyer out there. Plinio Franca
I trust you know how much all of us at the Spreckels Organ Society appreciate your incredible generosity in providing legal assistance with the visas required by the international artists last year during our International Summer Organ Festival. We consider it an honor that you and your firm provided this service, and were delighted to publicize your firm in our concert materials. George H.
That's good news on the approval of our 3 executive L1A visas. You fought a tough RFE, but we won. We are pleased to be working with you. KB is also bringing passports tomorrow again to the US Embassy in Tashkent for visa processing. We look forward to his arrival to the US. Sarvar
I wanted to thank again and again for obtaining my E1 Treaty Trader visa for me. The process was not easy, especially since our trade was all based on Technology. You knew the law, and was able to craft an outstanding file to be presented to Immigration. We are now ready to take the business to the next level. Toda Raba
Thanks for helping me with my marriage-based immigration case. You were very accessible - taking my calls, returning my messages and emails promptly. You answered all my questions. I was most impressed and relieved that you attended the immigration interview with me and my wife. You made the whole process streamline and simple. You really know your stuff, and you're a nice, friendly guy as well. Shane P.