To read the full Report click on the following link:-
Dmitri Nikolaenko has produced a Report on the consequences of Brexit for Uk citizens working in Latvia. The Report explains the procedure for acquiring a residence permit and work permit in Latvia.
To read the full Report click on the following link:-
Anne O’Donoghue reports that the following new regional visas have recently been announced:
1. Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional(Provisional) visa: for people sponsored by an employer in regional Australia. 9000 places have been allocated for this visa and almost 700 occupations are eligible.
2. Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa: for people who are nominated by a State or Territory government or sponsored by an eligible family member to live and work in regional Australia. 14000 places have been allocated for this visa and there are over 500 eligible occupations
The Minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs, David Coleman said the Federal Government is working to address the skills needs of regional Australia. He recently stated, “The Morrison Government is working to support the growth of regions and match our migration program with labour market needs, particularly in regional Australia”
More information on these new Visas and other recent changes in Australian Immigration Law can be found via the following links:-
Canada - The State Bar of Texas, 31st Annual Institute, Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy, Houston, Texas. March 28-29, 2019
Sergio Karas spoke on Thursday, 28 March 2019, at Rice University Baker Institute for Public Policy in Houston, TX, on the topic of the USMCA ( United States, Mexico, Canada Free Trade Agreement). The event was sponsored by the State Bar of Texas International Law Section.
Details of the event and the full panel of speakers can be found at:-
France - The rights of UK nationals continuing to stay in France in the case of a hard Brexit - Conditions of issuance of residence permits
Karl Waheed reports that the French government issued a decree on 2 April 2019 implementing Ordinance No. 2019-76 of 6 February 2019, which specifies the conditions for issuing residence permits to British nationals in order to continue their stay and professional activity in France after the Brexit date, in the event of no exit agreement being reached between the United Kingdom and the European Union.
The principle conditions of issuance of the residence permits to British nationals and their family members are as follows:-
1. A transition period of 12 months - UK nationals and family members continuing their stay and professional activities beyond the Brexit date may do so for a maximum period of 12 months after the Brexit date. During this transition period they do not need to be in possession of a residence permit.
2. Residence permit application to be requested within 6 months following the Brexit - The UK nationals who wish to remain in France beyond this transition period will have 6 months after the Brexit date to apply for one of the appropriate residence permits.
3. The decree details the documents that UK nationals and their family members will provide in support of their application according to the appropriate residence permit they are eligible to.
4. The amount of the tax due for the issuance of a residence permit is reduced to 100 euros for British nationals and their family members instead of 269 euros applicable to third country nationals.
Full details can be viewed by clicking the link below and choosing News/Newsletters/ Client alert, 4 April 2019. Here you can also find the Client alert, 13 February 2019, which provides additional details of Ordonnance n° 2019-76 of 6 February 2019 outlining various measures relating to entry, stay, social rights and professional activity.
The last provisions of the law of 10 September 2018 on residence and integration entered into force on 1 March 2019.
These provisions include:-
1. Measures concerning ICT seconded employees and ICT trainees ( intra-group mobility)
2. Transposition of the EU 2016/801 Student/Researcher Directive, adopted on 11 May 2016
3. Creation of a multi-year residence permit entitled “mobility program” for students and researchers
4. Enlargement and security of residence cards “ Passport Talent”
5. Provisions relating to family immigration
6. Extension of rights of a four year residence permit
Full details can be viewed by clicking the link below and choosing News/Newsletters/ Client alert, 18 March 2019.
Canada - A lot of people are facing potential deportation under upcoming changes to Driving Under The Influence penalties
Sergio Karas was interviewed by CBC News on 22nd November in connection with changes to the Impaired Driving rules. This story also ran on CBC National Radio program “The World at Six” country-wide.
On Dec. 18, amendments to the Criminal Code come into effect that will increase the maximum sentence for driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol to 10 years from five.
The changes are part of Bill C-46, which was intended to update impaired driving rules in light of legalized recreational cannabis use.
But the increased penalties also mean convictions for impaired driving will fall under the category of "serious criminality" for immigration determination purposes.
That change, in turn, triggers a section of Canada's Immigration and Refugee Protection Act dealing with admissibility to Canada.
It says a permanent resident convicted for a serious crime — an offence punishable by a maximum sentence of at least 10 years — or who receives a sentence of more than six months imprisonment will be sent to a deportation hearing.
Under the immigration act, people convicted of those "serious" crimes also lose the ability to appeal any deportation order through the Immigration Appeal Division, although they can still ask to stay on humanitarian or compassionate grounds.
The stiffer penalties also mean temporary residents who are convicted of impaired driving after Dec. 18 — including international students and foreign workers — may not be able to stay in Canada.
Refugee claimants who are already in Canada and are convicted may be ineligible to have their claim referred to a refugee board hearing under the new rules
Sergio Karas states that he is sure that there are going to be a lot of people facing potential deportation due to DUIs in Canada. He hopes judges will take an offender's immigration status into account — while still imposing sentences fit for the crime. But he knows that courts of appeal could overturn those sentences, and possibly even increase them. Karas has two pieces of advice for permanent residents:-
"As soon as you're ready to become a citizen because you've fulfilled the requirements of the citizenship legislation and you have put in the time in Canada, please apply for citizenship, because that will save you a lot of problems,
No. 2 would be for permanent residents to be very much aware that they're not citizens of this country and any type of criminal offence may trigger deportation proceedings."
To read the full interview and article click here
Sergio Karas can be contacted at email@example.com
Neil Montgomery, Managing Partner of Montgomery and Associates, issued the following alert on 28th November 2018:-
On 22nd November 2018, the National Immigration Council, an agency linked to the Ministry of Labour, published Normative Resolution No. 36 regulating the issuance of a residence permit as a result of the purchase of real estate in Brazil.
Such residence permit will be granted to immigrants of any nationality who acquire real estate in Brazil, located in urban areas, built or under construction, with the use of such immigrant's own resources.
This norm requires that the funds used to purchase the property(ies) be transferred from abroad, and that the sum of the purchase amounts of all properties acquired be equal to or greater than BRL 1,000,000.00 ( one million reais ) if located in the South, Southeast and Midwest regions, or BRL 700,000.00 ( seven hundred thousand reais ) for real estate located in the North and Northeast regions.
The investment may be in more than one property, provided that the total investment in all properties meets the required threshold. Co-ownership will also be admitted provided that the minimum amount of investment per immigrant has been observed.
Moreover, such residence permit will be granted for 2 years initially, and if the immigrant continues to own the property(ies) at the end of the two-year period, it can be renewed for an indefinite period of time.
This is a great breakthrough for the national immigration policy, thereby contributing to the development of new business in Brazil.
To read this alert in Portuguese click here
Neil Montgomery can be contacted at
neil.montgomery @montgomery.adv.br / +55 11 4096-4008 / +55 11 98689-3121 (cel)
Canada – Canadian-European Union Trade Agreement (CETA): New Provisions for Temporary Entry into Canada. Webinar on February 27, 2018 at 12:00 to 1:00 ET.
Sergio Karas will be giving a webinar on this subject as part of the Canadian HR Reporter’s webinar series, on February 27, 2018, from 12:00 to 1:00 ET.
The cost will be $69 + applicable taxes.
Summary of webinar
The Canada-European Union Trade Agreement (CETA) came into force in September 2017. The CETA contains a number of immigration provisions that may be of interest to companies with European operations and employees who move between them and locations within Canada. This webinar is aimed at helping organizations get up to speed on key aspects of CETA that may affect the interaction of operations and key employees in Canada and the European Union.
Topics to be discussed include:
• Business visitors: new criteria for visits of short duration, permissible activities
• Intra-company transferees
• Professionals: who is allowed in and who is not? Sectors covered, list of professions that are NOT included in CETA
• Contractual Service Suppliers: what is the difference with professionals?
• Investors: who can get a Work Permit and what do they need to demonstrate?
The Siskind's Immigration Bulletin for October 2017 is available to view here.
Greg Siskind introduces the bulletin with the following overview:-
"Immigration continues to dominate the news and while Congress has yet to pass a single bill on immigration, change continues continue coming from the Executive Branch. One of the most important developments has been the failed implementation of the third version of the President’s Travel Ban on visa holders from several different (mostly Muslim) countries. Courts in Hawaii and Maryland ruled this week that the ban continues to violate the Immigration and Nationality Act. The Hawaii court issued a nationwide injunction and the Department of Homeland Security has indicated it will comply with the court order.
DACA’s deadline for final extension applications passed on October 5th and it is far from clear what will happen when large groups of people begin to lose their work authorization beginning in March. Five bills have been introduced in the House and Senate, but the apparent deal announced by Democratic leaders with the President was essentially repudiated when the White House announced a number of new conditions that are widely seen as being non-starters. That, coupled with a release of White House policy principles this month has led many to conclude that anti-immigration zealots are firmly in control of policymaking in the White House."
Greg is pleased to announce the publication of his new book with co-author Bruce Buchanan. It’s title is "The I-9 and E-Verify Handbook" and it can be found on Amazon in both print and e-book versions.
Sergio Karas co-chaired the ninth annual Northern Border U.S./Canada Immigration Law Conference which took place on 20th October 2017 at the Holiday Valley Mountain Resort Ellicottville, NY. Richard Link, Chair of the Upstate New York chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, sponsor of the conference, was co-chair of the conference.
This conference brings together leading immigration law practitioners from both the United States and Canada to discuss issues touching on immigration to both countries, with a focus on the North Eastern U.S./Canada border posts.
This important cross-border program was attended by approximately 100 US and Canadian lawyers, and several senior government officials, including keynote speaker, the new US Consul in Toronto, and the Canada Border Services Agency Chief of Rainbow Bridge (Niagara Falls).
The theme of this year’s conference was “Dealing with Change”, reflecting the fact that since last year’s conference, the electorates in both Canada and the United States have installed new leadership at the federal level. A more restrictive immigration attitude has taken hold in the United States, and practitioners must adjust accordingly. Conference presentations this year focused on the effects of these changes.
To read the Conference Program click here
U. S. A - Alert: Interviews required for Employment-based Adjustment of Status and Derivative Asylee and Refugee Status Starting on October 1st
The following alert has been issued by Siskind Susser PC:-
Starting on October 1, 2017, USCIS will require an in-person interview for anyone moving from an employment-based status to permanent residency (I-485 adjustment of status interviews), as well as for family members of refugees or asylees applying for derivative refugee or asylee status (I-730 refugee/asylee relative interviews). A public announcement by USCIS was just released today.
USCIS currently requires interviews for family-based green card and naturalization processes but waives the interview requirement for the above-referenced categories most of the time. While interviews for those transitioning from employment-based visa status to green cards were standard a decade ago, waivers have been regularly granted since then. Under the new policy, there will be no further waivers.
This policy change is part of the Trump administration’s “extreme vetting” plan, and was specifically referenced in the President’s Executive Order instituting the travel ban (Executive Order Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States, issued in January and revised in March). Section 5 of the revised EO requires the “development of a uniform baseline for screening and vetting standards and procedures, such as in-person interviews . . . .” Much of the focus of the “extreme vetting” plan has thus far been placed on the Department of State and Customs and Border Protection, but attention has now turned to USCIS in the implementation of this plan.
The result will likely be over a hundred thousand more USCIS in-person interviews per year, which will certainly lengthen wait times for green card applications, especially since USCIS is already taking a very long time to process several types of nonimmigrant and immigrant petitions and applications.
USCIS has confirmed that it is engaging in “a multiphase approach” that will eventually mandate in-person interviews across several other categories, with a present focus on those pursuing permanent residence. The details are unclear at this time, but we will report back as we receive updates.
With the in-person interview, USCIS’s clear goal is to identify security risks and prevent fraud. However, critics are pointing out that the lack of any pervasive fraud in the above categories, the fact that the beneficiaries are already in the U.S., the continuing use of fingerprint screening and extensive security checks, and the new I-485, Supplement J to confirm the continued presence of a bona fide job offer, make USCIS’s policy change even more unnecessary.
In the employment-based context, the worst consequences will likely be much increased wait times to finalize the green card. The policy change will not affect adjudications of I-140 petitions or EADs (employment authorization documents) through the pending green card process. Therefore, the change should not impact status or work authorization within the U.S., unless the increased interview workload ultimately impacts adjudications in other areas. Should there be an expansion into other categories, the impact may be even more substantial. With respect to derivative refugees and asylees, consequences will include delays in receiving such status as well as the ultimate green card.
To prepare for the interview, the applicant must have a solid understanding of the benefit for which he or she is applying, as well as why he or she is eligible for the benefit. The employment-based green card applicant must be able to describe the employer, the position (including specific job duties, location, pay, etc.), and his or her credentials. The family member of a refugee or asylee must be able to explain the basis for their relative’s refugee or asylee status and be able to establish the family relationship, especially the bona fides of a relationship based on marriage. All applicants must be thoroughly familiar with the contents of their application.
Our office conducts detailed interview preparation with our clients to familiarize them with the timeline, steps, and environment of the interview, as well as with examples of what the adjudicating officer may ask. We often play the role of the officer and ask tough questions to point out and prepare the client to respond to any weaknesses in the case. We also strongly prefer in-person or video interview preparation to gauge the applicant’s mannerisms and facial expressions.
News from Visalaw International members around the world.