Employment Based Immigration
Masliah & Soloway represents individuals seeking to immigrate to the United States who are sponsored by their employer or who self-petition in one of several categories. We also represent corporations, universities, and non-profit organizations that wish to sponsor a current or temporary employee to remain permanently in the United States.
- Aliens of Extraordinary Ability - for individuals who have extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics.
- Outstanding Professors and Researchers - a researcher or professor applying for this visa must be internationally recognized as "outstanding" in a specific academic area.
- Multinational Executives and Managers - an executive or manager, who has been employed abroad by a multinational, may be transferred permanently to assume an executive or managerial position in the U.S. subsidiary, affiliate or branch office.
Members of Professions Holding Advanced Degrees or Aliens of Exceptional Ability
- Advanced Degree Holders - applicants for this visa category must have a Master's degree or its equivalent. Applicants must have an approved Labor Certification Application, i.e. their employers must have proven to the satisfaction of the Department of Labor that there was no qualified, able and available U.S. worker to fill the position.
- Exceptional Ability - the alien must have a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered. Approve Labor Certification is also required to file a petition in this category.
Skilled Workers, Professionals and Other Workers
- Professionals/Skilled Workers - the alien must have a baccalaureate degree or be a member of a skilled profession, i.e. those requiring at least two years experience. Approved Labor Certification Application is required for these categories.
Permanent Resident Status or an Immigrant Visa on the Basis of Family Relationship
- Immediate Relatives and Preference Categories - Citizens of the United States may sponsor certain relatives for immigration to the United States. Immigrant visas or "green cards" are immediately available for spouses, minor children and parents of citizens. Children over the age of 21 and siblings of citizens fall under the "preference" system, which are a series of greatly backlogged categories that require long waits for immigrant visa availability. Lawful Permanent Residents (or "green card" holders) may sponsor spouses and unmarried children for immigration under the preference system. The State Department Visa Bulletin contains monthly updates on the processing times of these categories.
- V nonimmigrants - In attempt to address long backlogs in certain family based immigration categories, Congress added a new non-immigrant category (the "V" visa) that allows the spouse (V-1) or unmarried child under the age of 21 (V-2) of a Lawful Permanent Resident to live and work in the United States, instead of forcing them to wait outside the country. To qualify, the spouse or child must be the principal beneficiary of a petition filed by the spouse or parent on or before December 21, 2000 and must have waited more than three years because an immigrant visa is not yet available or must have a pending application for permanent residence or an immigrant visa. The derivative child of a V-1 or V-2 nonimmigrant is eligible for V-3 status. The immigration laws provide a nonimmigrant visa classification (K-1) for persons coming to the United States to marry American citizens and reside here. A person who is already married to a U.S. citizen may apply for permanent residence through marriage, but may not apply for a fiancé(e) visa.
- Fiancé(e) Visas - To establish K-1 visa classification for an alien fiancé(e), an American citizen must file a Petition for Relative or Fiancé(e). The approved petition will be forwarded to the American consular office where the alien fiancé(e) will apply for his or her visa and will be interviewed. Both petitioner and beneficiary must be legally able and willing to conclude a valid marriage in the United States and must have previously met in person within the past two years unless that requirement is waived. Once approved, the fiancé(e) visa will be valid for one entry during a period of six months. Once admitted to the United States, the beneficiary and the petition must marry within 90 days. Following the marriage, the spouse must apply for adjustment of status to permanent residence. The unmarried, minor children of a K-1 beneficiary derive K-2 nonimmigrant visa status from the parent so long as the children are named in the petition. A separate petition is not required if the children accompany or follow the alien fiancé(e) within one year from the date of issuance of the K-1 visa. Thereafter, a separate immigrant visa petition is required.
- Married Fiancé(e)s and their children - A recent change in the law created a new nonimmigrant status for spouses and children of U.S. citizens who are the beneficiary of a petition filed by the U.S. citizen relative and who seek to enter the U.S. to await the approval of the petition and continue processing for permanent residence. K-3 and K-4 nonimmigrants are eligible for employment authorization while in the United States waiting for the conclusion of processing of their case. To apply for K-3 status the spouse must have an approved I-129F Petition for Alien Fiancé(e) forwarded to the U.S. consulate. Children of a K-3 nonimmigrant who are under 21 and unmarried are eligible for K-4 status.
- Temporary Protected Status
- Permanent Residence for Asylee
- Cuban Adjustment Act Applicants
- Diversity Visa "Green Card" Lottery
Temporary (Non-Immigrant) Status
- E-1 - for an individual seeking to come to the United States temporarily to engage in trade of a substantial nature, primarily between the United States and the country of the individual's nationality. The trade involved must be international exchange (successfully negotiated contracts binding on all parties) of items of trade between the U.S. and a treaty country.
- E-2 - for individuals seeking to come to the United States temporarily to direct and develop the operations of an ongoing business enterprise in which he or she has invested, or is in the process of investing, substantial capital. Only nationals of countries with which the United States have a treaty may be considered "treaty investors" under the E-2 category. The investment involved must place lawfully acquired, owned and controlled capital at commercial risk with a profit objective, and be subject to loss if the investment fails.
- H-1B - this status is given to those persons in a specialty occupation, i.e. those positions requiring a minimum of a bachelor degree in a specific field, for an initial period of three years which may be extended to a maximum of six years. This category also includes fashion models of distinguished merit and ability.
- H-2B - for jobs that are truly temporary in nature, usually seasonal jobs or jobs created due to intermittent or unexpected need. The U.S. Department of Labor must first certify the unavailability of U.S. workers.
- H-3 is a non-immigrant visa/status allowing aliens to attend a trainee program in the U.S. This visa/status is mostly used by firms and companies working with trainees from a parent or subsidiary abroad wishing to give more and a different kind of work experience towards the alien. H-3 trainees must not receive any graduate medical education or training in the U.S., must demonstrate that this training is not available in the beneficiary's home country, and that training is needed to advance his/her career outside the United States. The petitioner must submit a highly structured and organized training program that prepares the trainee for a position abroad.
- L-1 - for employees of multinational companies who have worked in either an executive/managerial capacity (L-1A) or who have worked in a position requiring specialized knowledge (L-1B) for one of the past three years. The spouse and children of an intracompany transferee may be admitted temporarily to the United States in L-2 status.
- O-1 is a non-immigrant visa classification for foreign nationals who can demonstrate the sustained national or international acclaim and recognition for achievements in the science, education, business or athletics. It requires the employer file a Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker (Form I-129), along with evidence of the individual's extraordinary ability. The "extraordinary ability in the filed of science, education, business or athletics means a level of expertise indicating that the person is one of the small percentage who have arisen to the very top of the field of endeavor." Issued to aliens of extraordinary ability in the arts, sciences, business, film, television or athletics.
- P-1 - In order to obtain one of the P visas, the alien must be an athlete or entertainer, or be participating in a reciprocal exchange program between the U.S. and their home nation, or be "culturally unique."
- R-1 - Religious worker coming to the United States to work as a minister of religion, a professional in a religious vocation or occupation, or for a bona fide nonprofit religious organization at the request of the organization, in a religious occupation which relates to a traditional religious function. The religious worker must have been a member of a religious denomination having a nonprofit religious organization in the United States for at least two years immediately prior to the application date. Spouses and children of R-1 nonimmigrants are eligible for R-2 status.
- TN-1 - for certain Canadian and Mexican professionals who seek to enter the United States for the purpose of temporary employment.
Naturalization is the process by which U.S. citizenship is granted to a foreign citizen or national after he or she fulfills the requirements established by Congress in the Immigration and Nationality Act.
Individuals may seek asylum if they are present in the United States and have a well-founded fear of persecution because of their race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group. In most cases, an asylum application must be filed within the one year of the applicant's last entry into the United States, although the regulations provide for exceptions to this filing deadline. Asylum may be sought affirmatively through an administrative Asylum Office interview or as a defense against deportation if the applicant is already in Removal Proceedings before an Immigration Judge. "Asylees" or those granted asylum may remain in the United States indefinitely, may apply for employment authorization and a Refugee Travel Document. A year after their asylum application was approved, asylees are eligible to apply for permanent residence in the United States. Denial of asylum by an Immigration Judge can be appealed to the Board of Immigration Appeals.
Removal Proceedings and Appeals
Representing individuals in removal (deportation) proceedings before the Immigration Court or the Board of Immigration Appeals.