Government Shutdown

With the federal government shutdown, there are several significant disruptions that are expected to occur to the processing of visas and immigration cases. We know some of you are concerned about how this could impact your immigration processing.  We have highlighted below several of the disruptions we are anticipating. If you have any questions or want to know how the shutdown could affect your particular application/situation, please do not hesitate to contact us.

1. The Department of Labor (DOL) will not process Labor Condition Applications (LCA’s). Consequently, H1B transfers and H1B extensions cannot be filed unless the company already has a pre-approved Labor Condition Application for the position and location. If we have an emergency situation and must submit an H1B extension (because of an expiration date) we will submit the application without the LCA and hope that the USCIS will accept the application without the LCA. Please note that unlike the DOL, USCIS is “open” and most of its operations will not be impacted by the shutdown because they are separately funded by the filing fees paid with each application.

2. The DOL will not be issuing Prevailing Wage Determinations (PWD’s). Consequently, there will be a delay in the filing of PERM applications.

3. The DOL will not be accepting the filing of PERM applications. Consequently, recruitment campaigns may expire and may have to be re-done. For applications that must be submitted immediately, we are trying to ascertain if a hard copy, rather than electronic copy, can still be filed to protect existing recruitment efforts and establish a priority date for H1B 7th year extension purposes.

4. The Department of State (DOS) plans to operate as normal until funds are exhausted. However, we expect delays in the processing of both immigrant and non-immigrant visas. If you are planning a trip abroad to apply for a new visa (visa stamp), you should seriously consider waiting until things are back to normal.

5. E-Verify services will not be available.

We will keep you updated on developments as they occur.

| Immigrant, Nonimmigrant