On March 23, 2018, President Trump signed the Omnibus Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2018 into law, which includes an extension of the EB-5 Regional Center program without changes until September 30, 2018. The approved spending bill contains the first significant regional center program extension since 2012.
SKT will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates.
If you have any questions or are interested in applying for the EB-5 visa, please contact the attorneys at SKT.
Similar to last year, USCIS will temporarily suspect premium processing for all cap-subject petitions. This suspension is expected to last until September 10, 2018. Premium processing is when petitioners can request a faster processing time on H-1B petitions with an additional paid fee of $1,225.
During this temporary suspension, USCIS will reject combined checks that include fees for premium processing and the H-1B petition. Practice tip: Do not file Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service and do not submit the $1,225 fee. Both the form and fees will be rejected by USCIS. The reasons for the temporary suspension is to aid USCIS is reducing overall H-1B processing times.
SKT will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates.
If you have any questions or are interested in applying for the EB-5 visa, please contact the attorneys at SKT.
Congratulations to Catharine Yen, SKT Attorney and Immigration Section Chair, for being recognized as one of the Top 25 EB-5 Immigration Attorneys in the United States by EB5Investors.com!Read More
President Trump’s Budget Deal With Congress Includes Extension of the EB-5 Regional Center Program Through December 8, 2017
The EB-5 Regional Center Program is officially extended until December 8, 2017. With this short-term extension, there are no changes to the EB-5 requirements.
The program is extended through H.R. 601 – Continuing Appropriations Act, which was passed by both the House of Representatives and Senate last week. The President signed the bill into law on September 8, 2017 in order to keep the U.S. government open and funded.
President Donald J. Trump signs H.R. 601 – Continuing Appropriations Act,
Friday, September 8, 2017, at Camp David near Thurmont, MD
Photo Source: www.whitehouse.gov
(Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks)
Please note: The fact that the program is extended to December 8, 2017 does not guarantee that the program will remain unchanged until that date. It’s possible that Congress could pass legislation before December that would affect the EB-5 visa category. If you are interested in obtaining an EB-5 visa, please contact the attorneys at SKT for a consultation as to how you should proceed with your case.Read More
SKT Attorney and leading EB-5 expert, Catharine Yen, presented on the Advanced Panel titled: Source of Funds: A Roadmap to 2017. With almost every seat filled in the room, Ms. Yen shared her industry knowledge and experience of filling over 400 EB-5 petitions with a 100% approval rate.
We are proud to announce that Eliot F. Krieger, of Schuchert, Krieger, Truong, Spagnola & Klausner LLP, has been selected to the 2017 list as a member of the Nation’s Top One Percent by the National Association of Distinguished Counsel. NADC is an organization dedicated to promoting the highest standards of legal excellence. Its mission is to objectively recognize the attorneys who elevate the standards of the Bar and provide a benchmark for other lawyers to emulate.
Members are thoroughly vetted by a research team, selected by a blue-ribbon panel of attorneys with podium status from independently neutral organizations, and approved by a judicial review board as exhibiting virtue in the practice of law. Due to the incredible selectivity of the appointment process, only the top one percent of attorneys in the United States are awarded membership in NADC. This elite class of advocates consists of the finest leaders of the legal profession from across the nation.
Contracts can be long, boring, and very confusing. Understanding the parts of a contract will hopefully help you in any present or future agreements. To start, you should know about the three main components that make up a contract: offer, acceptance, and consideration.
An “offer” constitutes an expression of interest in entering a contract. When an offer is made, it should be understood by both parties that upon acceptance of the terms, the offer is considered binding. For example, an offer can be as simple as a person writing a price on a for sale sign and placing it on their vehicle. Or, it can be complex in that it has many terms, like an employment contract, in which a person must satisfy all terms in the offer through the length of the contract. Importantly, once the offer is accepted, it is binding, no matter how simple or complex the offer is.
Once an offer is made it can be ignored, accepted, specifically rejected or rejected by submitting a counter-offer. As with the acceptance of an offer, the acceptance of a counter-offer creates a binding agreement of that new offer.
“Acceptance” is either a promise, or an act that indicates a person’s will to enter into a contract and be bound by the terms set forth in the offer. Acceptance can be tricky – especially when it is done through an act, such as verbal communication, accepting funds, or even a handshake. However, acceptance is most closely associated with signing a document of the agreed upon terms.
The third and final part of a contact is “consideration.” Consideration is a legal term for exchanging something of value. Whether it be money, products, services, consideration is something of value that each party exchanges. For example, an employee provides his or her time and skill for an employer, who, in exchange, provides compensation. It has long been said, that the exchange of consideration can be as little as a peppercorn seed as its of sufficient value.
While contracts can be extremely lengthy, complicated, and difficult to understand, only these three elements are required for one to be formed and legally binding. For any of your contract needs, both simple and complex, know that the business law attorneys at Sullivan, Krieger, Truong, Spagnola, and Klausner are more than happy to assist you. You can contact us at 1-877-877-1-LAW or fill out the form below to get in touch with us.Read More
President Trump Issues Executive Order Suspending Refugee Admissions and Entry of Green Card/Visa Holders From Particular Countries
President Donald Trump issued an Executive Order (EO), entitled Protecting the Nation from Foreign Entry into the United States, which went into immediate effect upon signing on Friday, January 27, 2017. The EO bars the admission of immigrants and non-immigrants from seven countries (Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen) for at least 90 days, suspends the U.S. Refugee Admission Program for at least 120 days, and indefinitely suspends the entry of Syrian refugees.
Suspension of Visa Issuance
As previously discussed, the EO suspends the entry of immigrants and non-immigrants who are nationals from certain countries for 90 days. These countries include Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. However, the 90-day entry ban excludes foreign nationals traveling to the United States on diplomatic visas, NATO visas, C-2 visas for travel to the United Nations, and G-1, G-2, and G-4 visas.
The EO further instructs the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Secretary of State and the Director of National Intelligence, to submit a report to President Trump, within 30 days of the EO, regarding the adequacy of information collected during the visa adjudication process for the purpose of verifying the applicant’s identity. The report shall also include a list of countries not supplying adequate information. After the first 30 days, foreign governments who have not yet provided sufficient information will be given 60 days’ notice to do so. A country’s failure to comply with the request will result in foreign nationals from said country being prohibited entry to the U.S. However, visas may continue to be issued on a case-by-case basis, when in the national interest, to foreign nationals even if their country is listed.
The EO appears to include both individuals born in affected countries and individuals who hold dual nationality with one of those countries. Although dual nationals who present a passport from a non-banned country should not be denied entry, application of the EO across airports in the U.S. have been inconsistent.
With regards to lawful permanent residents (“LPRs”), the Department of Homeland Security has issued a statement asserting that the ban applies to LPRs, but that they would qualify for an exception due to national interest. LPRS from affected countries are consequently not barred from entry unless the U.S. government deems that they pose a national security threat. However, LPRs may still be subject to lengthy questionings and heightened entry procedures at U.S. ports of entry.
Implementing New Standards for Screening
The Secretaries of State and Homeland Security, the Director of National Intelligence, and the Director of the FBI are tasked with implementing a uniform screening standard and procedure to identify individuals seeking to enter the U.S. on a fraudulent basis, with the intent to harm, or who are at risk of causing harm. The new screening program will include the following:
- A database of identity documents to ensure that duplicate documents are not produced by multiple applicants;
- Application forms with amended questions aimed at identifying fraudulent answers and malicious intent;
- A mechanism to ensure the identity of the applicant;
- A process to evaluate whether the applicant will be a positively contributing member of society; and
- A mechanism to ascertain whether the applicant has the intent to commit criminal or terrorist acts after admission.
Suspension of the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program
President Trump is suspending the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) for 120 days while a review and modification of the refugee screening process takes place. After said 120 days, USRAP admissions will resume only for countries with sufficient safeguards against threats to the safety and welfare of the U.S. The Secretaries of Homeland Security and State may admit individuals on a case-by-case basis, if it is in the national interest, or when the person is already in transit and denying admission would cause undue hardship. Refugee claims made by individuals based on religious persecution (if the religion is a minority religion in the country of nationality) are deemed to be of national interest and will receive priority once USRAP is continued. Once admissions are permissible, the number of admissions shall not exceed 50,000 in fiscal year 2017.
Entry of Syrian refugees is suspended until President Trump determines that sufficient changes have been made to USRAP.
The EO includes additional provisions related to the entry of foreign nations into the U.S., including the following:
- All travelers to the U.S. will be required to provide biometric data upon entry and exit from the U.S. (as opposed to current entry-only requirements). Three reports shall be submitted within the first year of the EO, and a report shall be submitted every 180 days until the system is completed and operational;
- The Visa Interview Waiver Program shall be immediately suspended, and all individuals seeking nonimmigrant visas will be required to undergo in-person interviews;
- The Secretary of State shall review all non-immigrant visa reciprocity agreements;
- Data regarding the number of foreign-born individuals in the U.S. who have been charged, convicted, or removed from the U.S. based on terrorism-related activities or gender-based acts of violence will be collected and made publicly available every 180 days.
The experienced immigration attorneys at Sullivan, Krieger, Truong, Spagnola, and Klausner will be monitoring the situation closely and will provide updates accordingly.[av_hr class=’default’ height=’50’ shadow=’no-shadow’ position=’center’ custom_border=’av-border-thin’ custom_width=’50px’ custom_border_color=” custom_margin_top=’30px’ custom_margin_bottom=’30px’ icon_select=’yes’ custom_icon_color=” icon=’ue808′ font=’entypo-fontello’] [gravityform id=”1″ title=”true” description=”true”] Read More
Nathaniel Rudd didn’t know that he was going to be a father until the woman he had dated exactly nine months prior called to notify him from the hospital.
The very next day, Nathaniel, 31 drove to the hospital to hold his baby son, Peter, for the first time. He soon after learned from a social worker that Peter’s mother wouldn’t be able to take him home. Nathaniel immediately began petitioning for custody.
Before taking a mandatory drug test, Nathaniel explained that he uses cannabis, with a doctor’s recommendation, to treat pain from a car accident that he had been in years prior. The drug test came back inconclusive, since he had not medicated in several days.
When Nathaniel went to court a few days later, he learned that the damage had already been done.
“They told me I was cognitively unable to care for my child because of medical marijuana use,” Rudd said.
Peter was placed in foster care in September of 2015 and Nathaniel has been fighting to bring him home ever since.
Nathaniel Rudd and his new fiancée are among hundreds of families who are estimated to be facing custody issues in California over medical marijuana use. These families all got a glimmer of hope on Nov. 8, when California voters approved Proposition 64. Under the new law, California courts can no longer rescind or restrict a parent’s custodial rights solely because they have recommendations for medical marijuana unless there’s a clear threat or evidence of harm as a result of marijuana use.
In Nathaniel’s case, he says that there was never an opportunity for him to demonstrate his care for his son Peter, or for authorities to observe any signs of substance abuse. There was only his own acknowledgement that he was a medical marijuana patient.
Nathaniel pointed out that he had been medicating with marijuana heavy in CBD (the non-psychoactive component of cannabis, primarily used to manage pain and treat cancer patients) This type of cannabis has almost no THC (the main compound that makes consumers high).
Nathaniel insists that he wasn’t ever impaired by his treatment and that he didn’t ever plan to use cannabis around his son. He volunteered to quit using medical marijuana entirely and submit to regular drug testing. Still, to date, he has been unable to gain custody of his son, Peter.
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We often have grandparents come through our double doors asking us this very question. The answer, as it usually is in law, it depends.
To best understand why “it depends”, you need to look at your case the same way the Court will. The Court, in coming to its conclusion looks directly to Family Code Section 3104. What this Section does is nothing more than simply tell the court what to follow. The court uses Family Code Section 3104 to compare your case against it and ultimately, tell the court if the grandparent has any visitation rights. Therefore, we need to analyze Section 3104 and compare and contrast it with your case.
Since we cannot compare and contrast your individual case with this Section over a blog for you, we will do the next best thing, which is break down the law.
Here, we will simplify the process for you by breaking down the important parts of this Section. In the end, hopefully you will be able determine on your own or with the help of our firm, Sullivan, Krieger, Truong, Spagnola & Klausner if you have visitation rights as a grandparent.
Family Code Section 3104 begins by describing that the Court cannot grant grandparent visitation unless two conditions are met at the outset. The court must find 1) that there is a preexisting relationship between the grandparent and child that is best interest of the child and 2) the court must balance the interest of the child having visitation with the grandparent against the right of the parents to exercise their authority. Essentially, if the court can find that there is a good preexisting relationship with the grandparents and the visitation is not hindering the ability of the parent to parent then the court can move forward.
Next, the Section states, that a petition by the grandparent cannot be filed while the parents are married unless any of the following six fact intensive scenarios arise: 1) The parents are currently living separately and apart on a permanent or indefinite basis, 2) one of the parents has been absent for more than one month without the other spouse knowing the whereabouts of the absent spouse, 3) one of the parents joins the petition with the grandparents, 4) the child is not residing with either parent, 5) the child has been adopted by a stepparent, and 6) which was recently amended in January 2015, one of the parents is incarcerated or involuntarily institutionalized.
Here, we can finally take a deep breath and determine the answer to the initial question posed above, which is yes. As it turns out, grandparents do have visitation rights, but very limited ones. If the grandparent’s case does not fall into one of the six instances above, they likely do not have any visitation rights. The reasons is, the California Legislature tends to view, and rightfully so, that the parent is in control of the child’s life.
If the stubborn grandparent refuses to believe the California Legislature thinks the parents are in charge, the rest of the Section will clearly convey them that they are.
Section 3401 continues to read, even if the grandparent has been granted visitation by the court, at any time, if there is a change in circumstances and none of the six scenarios exist, the parents may terminate the grandparental visitation and the court will approve it. Also, there is a rebuttable presumption that the visitation of a grandparent is not in the best interest of a minor child if the parents agree that the grandparent should not be given visitation rights. Even further, parents can object to visitation, visitation cannot conflict with custody or visitation with a birth parent and it cannot change the basis for the change in the residence of the child.
As a result, it is abundantly clear that under Family Code Section 3401 the California Legislature wants the parents to have priority over their child’s life, with the exception of six circumstances. Therefore, grandparents, if you want visitation rights as applied to this Section, you must be able to analogize those six scenarios to your case and meet the aforementioned requirements before it.
So grandparents, do you have a right to visitation with your grandchild? It depends, doesn’t it? Where do your facts take you?
If you have any questions regarding this or any other Family Law topics, do not hesitate to contact our offices at 1-877-877-1-LAW or reach us at www.sullivankrieger.com. We would be glad to help you.Read More