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Contributed by Melanie Corrin, Senior Attorney

 

Immigration Law and Services are Federal in nature, and therefore the current government shut-down may have an effect on pending/potential immigration cases.  As of midnight last night, there are a number of things you need to know:

Department of Labor:

The Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) is not accepting or processing any applications or related materials (such as audit responses), it receives, including Labor Condition Applications, Applications for Prevailing Wage Determination, Applications for Temporary Employment Certification, or Applications for Permanent Employment Certification. OFLC’s web site, including the iCERT Visa Portal System and the PERM system, has become static and is unable to process any requests or allow authorized users to access their online accounts.

DOL’s Office of Administrative Law Judges will be unable to perform any case-related activities, including conducting hearings. Hearings that have been previously scheduled will therefore be cancelled prior to the date of the hearing, and they will not be rescheduled for hearing until an appropriations bill or continuing resolution takes effect.

Department of State:

The DOS will continue as many normal operations as possible; operating status and available funding will need to be monitored continuously and closely, and planning for a lapse in appropriations must be continued.  This will be updated as information comes in.  Consular processing is not currently affected.

Executive Office for Immigration Review:

Court functions that support the detained caseload will continue, but other functions are suspended.

The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) is processing emergency stay requests as well as cases where the alien is detained, including case appeals, motions, federal court remands, and bonds.

Immigration & Customs Enforcement:

ICE detention and enforcement operations shall continue.  ICE chief counsel trail attorneys will still work on the detained docket only during a shutdown.  The ICE Community and Detainee Helpline will remain operational.

United States Citizenship & Immigration Services:

All USCIS offices worldwide are open and individuals should report to interviews and appointments as scheduled.

E-Verify is currently unavailable due to a government shutdown.

Please contact Joseph & Hall P.C. for more information on how your case is impacted.

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