Policy Updates

Used for immigration and visa policy changes as well as Executive Order updates. 

USCIS Unlawful Presence Policy Effective August 9, 2018

September 24, 2018

Effective August 9, 2018, USCIS updated policy regarding Unlawful Presence, which increases potential consequences for F-1/J-1 students who violate their status. The best way to avoid these consequences is to make sure you properly maintain your F-1/J-1 status while you are a student and during any F-1/J-1 post-completion training periods. Unlawful presence days begin accruing from the day an F-1 or J-1 violates status and can impact the ability to return to the US in the future,...

USCIS Expands Policy on Initiating Removal Proceedings

October 30, 2018

A June 28, 2018, USCIS policy memorandum (PM 602-0050.1) expands conditions under which USCIS issues a Notice to Appear (NTA), the document that begins removal (deportation) proceedings. The policy now includes situations "where, upon issuance of an unfavorable decision on an application, petition, or benefit request, the alien is not lawfully present in the United States."

Due to a legal necessity...

USCIS RFE & NOID Policy Effective Sept 11, 2018

September 27, 2018

A USCIS poilcy memo issued July 13, 2018 will allow USCIS adjudictors "full discretion to deny applications, petitions, and requests without first issuing an RFE [Request for Evidence] or a NOID [Notice of Intent to Deny], when appropriate. This policy is intended to discourage frivolous or substantially incomplete filings used as 'placeholder' filings and encourage applicants, petitioners, and requestors to be diligent in collecting and submitting...

3/28/2018- Updates on H-1B Premium Processing

March 28, 2018
H1-B Premium Processing continues to be available for UC Berkeley sponsored H-1B petitions, as the University is not subject to the FY 2019 cap. Premium processing will be suspended temporarily for H-1B petitions subject to the FY 2019 cap. This suspension is expected to last until Sept. 10, 2018. For more details please see the USCIS announcement on March 20, 2018.

4/10/2018- Chad Removed from Travel Ban List

April 16, 2018

A Presidential Proclamation on April 10, 2018 , has removed Chad from the Travel Ban list effective April 13, 2018 due to a Department of Homeland Security review which found that "that Chad has made marked improvements in its identity-management and information-sharing practices."

12/04/2017 - Travel Restrictions in Effect after Supreme Court Decision

December 4, 2017

On December 4, 2017 the Supreme Court of the United States issued stayson 2 previous preliminary injunctions impacting the September 24, 2017 ...

11/13/2017 - 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Issues Partial Stay of Travel Ban Injunction

November 16, 2017
On Nov 13, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals issued a partial stay of the Hawaii preliminary injunction on travel ban Proclamation 9645. The partial stay continues to block the travel ban for citizens of Chad, Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, and Somalia only if they can establish that they have "a credible claim of a bona fide relationship with a...

Non-Immigrant Visa Processing Resumes in Turkey

November 8, 2017
US non-immigrant visa services have resumed at the U.S. embassy and consulates in Turkey,on a limited basis with a reduced number of available appointments. For the near future, Berkeley International Office recommends minimizing international travel due to the changing nature of the new administration's policies on visas and U.S. entry. Should you have essential travel that requires a visa application, please information available from from the U.S. Mission in Turkey:...