The Visa Efficiency and E-Verify Extension Act of 2008

 

Recently, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) issued a section-by-section analysis of the Visa Efficiency and E-Verify Extension Act of 2008. In summary this bill recaptures unused family based and employment based visas from fiscal years 1992 through 2007 and allows unused family and employment based visas in future years to automatically “roll over” to the next fiscal year. Although the maximum number of visas issued is mandated by law, the actual number of visas issued in a given year can be significantly lower based on processing or other bureaucratic delays. In order to ensure that all authorized visas are actually used, the Act permits calculation of the final number of visas available that takes into account unused visas from past years.  Additionally, the bill reauthorizes the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) electronic employment eligibility verification program known as “E-Verify.” The Act provides a 5 year extension of the voluntary program and it also includes provisions that ensure that DHS provide timely reimbursements to the Social Security Administration (SSA) for the resources utilized to maintain the E-Verify program.

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DHS Secretary Chertoff Announces that USCIS will begin issuing Employment Authorization Documents with a 2 year validity period for individuals with green card applications pending.

DHS Secretary Chertoff Announces that USCIS will begin issuing Employment Authorization Documents with a 2 year validity period for individuals with green card applications pending.

On June 9, 2008, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff announced at his State of Immigration Address that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will be extending the validity period of the employment authorization documents (EAD) that are issued to individuals who applications for adjustment of status to lawful permanent resident status (“green card”) pending.

Currently, such individuals are granted EADs with a maximum validity of one year. According to Secretary Chertoff, beginning later in June 2008, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) will start issuing EADs with a validity period of two years for individuals who have adjustment of status applications filed that are expected to be pending for more than one year.

 

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