Recent U.S. Regulatory / Statutory Changes and Updates

See information below regarding any recent changes pertaining to non-immigrants traveling to, or studying and/or working in, the U.S.

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ITIN Applications for the 2013 Tax Year: UPDATED INFORMATION.

Please see the information on the International Student Life website here:

http://isl.uga.edu/students/itin.html

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U.S. State Dept Immigrant Visa Bulletin Update (December 2013)

This is the monthly update of the immigrant visa number availabilities for employment based green card application categories.  Click here for more information

http://travel.state.gov/visa/bulletin/bulletin_1360.html


Elimination of paper I-94 card at U.S. Ports of Entry (March 2013)

U.S. customs and Border Protection (CBP) has announced plans to eliminate the paper I-94 card issued to internationals entering the U.S. in non-immigrant visa statuses.  This will be implemented sometime in late spring and summer 2013.  There will be an electronic copy of the I-94 available to travelers, should they wish to print it out.  CBP will allow the printing of the electronic version of the I-94 through a webpage (not yet live!!)  at: http://www.cbp.gov/i94 

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Travel and Re-entry (February 2013)

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency has a wealth of information regarding travel to the U.S., and allowed items when re-entering the U.S.  Read more…

http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/vacation/kbyg/

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New Department Of State 'LGBT Travel Advisory' posting (February 2013)

The U.S. Department of State has issued a Travel Information Update for LGBT persons.  “Attitudes and tolerance toward lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) persons vary from country to country, just as they vary among U.S. cities and states. Most LGBT travelers encounter no problems while overseas, but it helps to be prepared and research your destination before you go.”  Read more….

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/lgbt/lgbt_5887.html

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DOS Visa Status Check (January 2013)

DOS has introduced the online "Visa Status Check," which allows both immigrant and non-immigrant applicants to check the status of their cases at the Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC).

https://ceac.state.gov/CEACStatTracker/Status.aspx

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U.S. State Dept Immigrant Visa Bulletin Update (December 2012)

This is the monthly update of the immigrant visa number availabilities for employment based green card application categories.  Click here for more information

http://travel.state.gov/visa/bulletin/bulletin_1360.html 


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Passage of Iranian Sanctions Law (August 2012)

Please see our information sheet on the new Iranian Sanctions Law:

Iranian sanctions law memo


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 Reminder: The U.S. government has a program in place to allow certain non-immigrants to enter the U.S. Armed Forces, and begin the process to become a U.S. citizen.  More information on the "MAVNI" Program can be found here:

MAVNI Program

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September 6th 2012

The U.S. Department of State has changed the process for visa application processing in India.  See the information sheet linked below for more information:

India.Visa.App.Change.9-2012.pdf

 

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August 17th, 2012

Problems with internationals applying for GA driver's licenses and or U.S. social security cards

Due to changes in state and federal requirements, some internationals may have difficulty when presenting immigration documents in support of a GA driver's license or a U.S. social security card application.  If you are having difficulty, please let us know by emailing issis@uga.edu, and putting"driver's license problem" or "ssn problem" in the subject line.  We will try to assist you.

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August 13th, 2012

Updated information on filing change of status applications within the U.S.

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June 18, 2012

World-wide unavailability of U.S. immigrant visa numbers effective July 1, 2012

The U.S. government limits the number of immigrant visas available, and in some categories, there is a backlog of cases.  Effective July 1, 2012, all categories will be unavailable, at least until October 1, 2012, the beginning of the next fiscal year. 

"EMPLOYMENT SECOND PREFERENCE VISA AVAILABILITY
Continued heavy demand for numbers in the Employment Second preference category has required the establishment of a Worldwide cut-off date for the month of July. This action has been taken in an effort to hold number use within the annual numerical limit. Should there be an increase in the current demand pattern, it may be necessary to make this category completely “unavailable” prior to September 30, 2012.

See more information at:

http://www.travel.state.gov/visa/bulletin/bulletin_5733.html

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June 15, 2012

Possible "deferred action" relief under new Dept. of Homeland Security policy for undocumented individuals.

This policy may apply to undocumented young people who are between the ages of 15 and 30, who can show physical presence in the U.S. of at least five years' duration.  If approved, the individual would be granted "deferred action", meaning no deportation could occur for a period of two years.  There are other qualifying criteria.  See below for more information:

 http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.eb1d4c2a3e5b9ac89243c6a7543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=f2ef2f19470f7310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=f2ef2f19470f7310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD

 

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June 12, 2012

Change to filing procedures for I-539 applications - changes of non-immigrant status or F-1 Status reinstatement applications

The U.S. government has updated information regarding filing of I-539 forms to extend or change non-immigrant status, or to file an F-1 reinstatement application. In summary, when filing an I-539 form, students and scholars should file the application with only a COPY of the signed I-20 or DS-2019 form. When the case is approved, USCIS will no longer return the original approved stamped I-20 or DS-2019 form. An approved USCIS stamp on an I-20 form or DS-2019 form is no longer required in order to receive benefits such as a change of immigration status, or a social security number. NOTE: International Students in F-1 status still must have an active SEVIS record, and an endorsement (signature) on the I-20 form from your immigration adviser at UGA.

Please contact us at issis@uga.edu if you have questions.

Please click here to access our ISSIS Update memo. You can also visit the USCIS website for additional information.