Employment Based Category 1

By | Houston Immigration, Immigration Policy | No Comments

This week the USCIS published a Statistics of its denial rates for Employment Based First Preference (EB-1) categories of Aliens with Extraordinary Ability and Outstanding Researchers categories. Extraordinary Ability is a self petition and has a higher standard than Outstanding Researcher which is petitioned by Universities and Research Institutions. The denial rate for Extraoridnary Ability has gone down. In 2010 for Extraordinary Ability was 38%, as opposed to 2008 when it was 53%. In 2009 it was 41%

However the denial rate for Outstanding Researcher has gone up. In 2010 it was 9% as opposed to an all time high in 2007 of 10%. In 2009 it was 7%

This is just statistics. It does not mean that Extraordinary Ability has become any easier. What’s astounding is the very high rate of denials. Many researchers who are young and thus haven’t risen to the level of Extraordinary Researchers, but were born in India or China, where an EB-2 National Interest Waiver takes forever; choose to file under Extraordinary Ability and gets denied. Their institutions do not want to sponsor them, so they self petition under Extraordinary Ability. Unless a researcher has discovered something extremely novel, which will help mankind, a post doc usually does not qualify under Extraordinary Ability.

Similarly I don’t think that Outstanding Researcher has gotten any more difficult. Many of those petitions are done by the International Affairs divisons of Universities, where they are not attorneys and produce poorly written petitions.

But as with grants for researchers, immigration law does not have the ability to see the young mind thinking of novel ideas. And going back to statistics again, most extraordinary research was done when the researcher was in their prime. (Think relativity) Young minds can challenge assumptions, and rebel against established thought to produce revolutionary new discoveries. Yet lots of them were squashed because of lack of funding and some leave for greener pastures in other countries, because the immigration process under EB-2 takes too long.

For more information contact Houston Immigration Lawyer or Houston Immigration Attorney, Annie Banerjee

Successful Immigrants Emphasize the Benefit of Family Green Cards

By | News & Press | 138 Comments

Accomplished writer and University of Houston professor Chitra Divakaruni wows with her stories of immigration, the South Asian experience, and women’s experiences.

Her books and her life point to the importance of foreign-born families unifying in the United States to have better lives and togetherness. Divakaruni was born in Calcutta, India and moved to Dayton, Ohio to be near her brother. She also pursued a master’s degree at Wright State University in Dayton and excelled in the doctorate program at the University of California, Berkeley.

Divakaruni’s life story mimics the pattern of other successful immigrants to the United States. It sometimes starts out with a brother moving to America, or a wife, or grandparents making the transition first. With U.S. immigration and green card laws, only a certain number of visas are allotted to countries around the world, and set categories define which relatives can come over immediately or must wait based on the preference system.

When one relative is already in the U.S. as a legal permanent resident or citizen, they will sponsor their relative and prove they have enough income or assets to support the immigrant as well as accept legal responsibility for them. The sponsor will need to show IRS tax returns, W2s, or 1099 forms to verify there are enough funds to not make the immigrant co-dependent on the state. It is highly recommended to have an experienced immigration attorney to go over the most appropriate type of visa and documents needed, file the I-130 petition and questionnaires correctly, and have the affidavits of support in place for the citizenship and immigration services office, also known as the USCIS.

The immigrant visa process can be complex and tedious, so individuals can benefit greatly by competent legal counsel. The USCIS mandates specific vaccinations, interviews, and sometimes requires DNA testing. Immigration attorneys can ensure that a client’s or family’s paperwork is filled out thoroughly to prevent delays as much as possible. Also, an immigration attorney will help a client make a good impression and presentation at the interview and testing.

Each year, the USCIS sets the number of visas given through set visa preferences. Some of the categories fill up fast, and some individuals and families can end up waiting quite a while to know their immigration status. The following preferences are set for this fiscal year:

Family First Preference – 23,400 visas to unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens, and their minor children

Family Second Preference – 114,200 visas to spouses, minor children, and unmarried sons and daughters (age 21 and over) of permanent residents

Family Third Preference – 23,400 visas to married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens, their spouses and minor children
Family Fourth Preference – 65,000 visas to brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens, and their spouses and minor children, provided the U.S. citizens are at least 21 years of age.
In Texas, Houston immigration attorney Annie Banerjee has successfully helped individuals, families, and employers for more than 10 years with their immigration matters. As an immigrant, Annie knows firsthand the diligence, respect, and hard work it takes to become a green card holder and U.S. citizen. She is very active in the legal profession and the community as a member of the Texas and American Bar Associations, American Immigration Lawyers Association, Indian Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston, and co-founder of the Indian American Lawyers of Houston.

A. Banerjee is a Houston immigration lawyer in Texas. Before selecting an immigration lawyer in Houston Texas, contact the Law Offices of Annie Banerjee by visiting their information filled web site at https://www.visatous.com.

Why we need H-1B; Because of NCAA

By | Houston Immigration, Immigration Policy | No Comments

There is a quota of 65,000 for regular H-1B and 20,000 for holders of Master’s Degree or Higher in a fiscal year. This year the USCIS has received appx 5,900 H-1B petitions counting toward the 65,000 cap, and approximately 4,500 petitions toward the 20,000 cap exemption for individuals with advanced degrees so far.

But the March Madness which recently ended, embodies why we need H-1Bs. Our colleges spend way more on sports than on education. I had not heard of Butler until last year. And most people supported Butler over Duke. Cinderalla team? Sure. But we did not know about the existence of this educational institution unless there was NCAA Basketball. Same with VCU this year. There is nothing wrong with cheering for the underdog, until you realize that these are actually educational institutions. And the Coach at Butler or VCU gets paid far higher than any professor or researcher in those institutions.

In other countries there are no colege sports. College sports are not big businesses. Instead the money goes towards education. Thus we have serious, and more productive students who in turn make better workers, and hence the H-1B program.

Note to Butler, You had two turns, and still could not win. Next year funnell more money into research, so that your US Nwes and World Report ranking rises.

For more information contact Houston Immigration Lawyer or Houston Immigration Attorney, Annie Banerjee

Houston Immigration Attorney Touts EB-5 Green Card Program

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Many people who apply for extraordinary ability, or EB-1 immigration status, might not have the rigorous criteria to show they truly have achievements in the sciences, art, education, business, sports, or international prestige. But for individuals who have the money to invest in the United States, the immigrant investor program known as EB-5 can be very attractive. Each year, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service allots 10,000 EB-5 visas.

EB-5 has two ways to qualify for legal permanent residency. An alien investor can make a capital investment of $500,000 in a USCIS-designated regional center or $1 million for a new business. Both ways strive to stimulate the American economy through job creation and allow the investor to bring their spouses and minor unmarried children. With the $1 million option, the alien investor must create 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers within two years of being in the U.S.

With the economy in doldrums, the EB-5 program can fuel local and regional jobs. “It’s a win for U.S. workers because they’re able to get jobs through this program,” says Cornell University immigration law professor Stephen Yale-Loehr. “It’s a win for project developers and cities and states because they are able to get money that they wouldn’t be able to tap into otherwise to fund their projects. And it’s a win obviously for the foreign investors because it allows them to get a green card.”

The EB-5 process is intense, so an individual will want to get legal representation to make sure every form and deadline is met. Each investor will want an experienced immigration attorney to review their I-526 petition to establish their eligibility for the EB-5 program. Once approved, the individual must then file I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. Investors and their families are granted a conditional two-year residency status, so 90 days before the two-year anniversary they must complete I-829 to show all terms of the EB-5 program have been met. When this last step is successfully completed, the investor is issued a new green card without conditions and can live and work in the U.S. permanently.

Investors who want to seek this type of residency should get legal counsel early. The process can take around a year and immigration officers will want documentation to ensure the investor’s money and business are legitimate.

In Texas, Houston immigration attorney Annie Banerjee has more than 10 years of successfully guiding investors through the EB-5 program. In Houston a large EB-5 regional center is located in the Chinatown district east of downtown. Investors are coming from Mexico, China, South Korea, Nigeria, India, and Pakistan. Attorney Banerjee is an immigrant, and knows the care and attention each individual, family, and employer deserves to get their American dream underway.

A. Banerjee is a Houston immigration lawyer in Texas. Before selecting an immigration lawyer in Houston Texas, contact the Law Offices of Annie Banerjee by visiting their information filled web site at https://www.visatous.com.