UNITED STATES – USCIS Resumes Premium Processing for All H-1B Petitions

On 12 March, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) resumed premium processing for all H-1B petitions.

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UNITED STATES – USCIS Resumes Premium Processing for All H-1B Petitions

This alert was prepared with information provided by Maggio Kattar.

COLOMBIA – Mercosur Visa Suspended for Chilean Nationals

Effective immediately, the Colombian Ministry of Foreign Affairs will no longer grant migrant visas to Chilean nationals on the basis of the Mercosur Agreement. This is understood to be a reciprocal measure, as Chile does not allow Colombian nationals to obtain residence on the basis of the Mercosur Agreement.

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This news alert was prepared using information provided by Tannus & Asociados and Brigard Urrutia.

UNITED STATES – USCIS to Resume Premium Processing for Certain Pending H-1B Petitions

US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that, on 19 February 2019, it will resume premium processing for pending H-1B petition filed on or before 21 December 2019.

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UNITED STATES – USCIS to Resume Premium Processing for Certain Pending H-1B Petitions

This alert was prepared with information provided by Gibney.

UNITED STATES – USCIS Resumes Premium Processing for Fiscal Year 2019 H-1B Cap Petitions

Effective 28 January 2019, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has resumed premium processing for all fiscal year (FY) 2019 H-1B cap-subject petitions.

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UNITED STATES – USCIS Resumes Premium Processing for Fiscal Year 2019 H-1B Cap Petitions

This alert was prepared with information provided by Gibney.

UNITED KINGDOM – Changes to Right-to-Work Checks in 2019

Effective 28 January 2019, employers in the United Kingdom will be able to rely on an online right-to-work check to prove the status of prospective employees.

The online Right to Work Checking Service was introduced in April 2018, but currently employers in the UK still need to request paper documents alongside using the service.

The changes will also make it simpler for UK nationals without British passports to demonstrate their citizenship by enabling them to use short birth or adoption certificates, which they can get for free, instead of the long versions.

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UNITED KINGDOM – Changes to Right-to-Work Checks in 2019

This alert was prepared with information provided by Newland Chase.

KENYA – In-Country Work Permits Suspended [UPDATED]

As of 10 December 2018, the Kenyan government has issued a directive suspending the in-country issuance of work permits and visa extensions. Once implemented, applications for entry/work permits must be submitted while the foreign national is outside Kenya. Upon the expiry of a permit or pass, the foreign national will be required to leave the country until the permit or pass is renewed and issued.

[UPDATE] As of 14 January 2019, this directive has not yet been implemented. However, increased scrutiny is being given to all applications with more stringent vetting of approvals for permits and passes. Approvals will only be given for positions where it is clearly demonstrated that there is no local skill-set available or that the sponsoring entity has taken genuine steps to train Kenyan understudies.

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UNITED KINGDOM – No Suspension of Tier 1 (Investor); Publication of Statement of Changes to the Immigration Rules [LATEST]

Tier 1 (Investor)

On 6 December 2018, various press outlets reported, based on an unpublished government press release, that the Home Office had suspended the Tier 1 (Investor) route until further notice.

However, on 11 December 2018 a Home Office spokesperson commented:

“The Tier 1 (Investor) visa is not currently suspended. However, the Government remains committed to reforming the route. A further announcement will be made in due course. Any suspension would be implemented through changes to the Immigration Rules.”

Statement of Changes

The Home Office has published its latest Statement of Changes to the Immigration Rules, announced on 6 December 2018.

The new Statement of Changes does not include most of the reforms to Tier 1 outlined in that announcement.

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