December 20, 2012 - Tel Aviv - Most of the world connects Israel to the middle east conflicts; the recent Gaza conflict is just one of the may stories heard about Israel on a daily basis .What is not yet known, is that Israel is angling her way into becoming one of the preeminent fashion capitals the world. The Tel Aviv Fashion Week is just in it’s second year and in large parts due to its producer, Motty Reif, it is finally taking off.
At the second Tel Aviv Fashion Week, Journalists from Sao Paulo, Milan, Berlin, Rome, Hong Kong, Berlin and Paris are observing exciting new trends with a new twist on the black, shiny, mirrored runway at what is now Tel Aviv Fashion Week. Models from all over the world are flown in by designers and fashion houses.
As exciting as Tel Aviv Fashion week, soon there will be fashion week in New York, and an infinite numbers of models will be filing the visas with the U.S. Consulates world wide in order that they may work in the U.S. as a fashion model.
This article will explain the basics in obtaining a visa for a fashion model.
Under U.S. immigration laws, there are three methods to qualify for a foreign model to work in the U.S. They are H-1B WORK VISA, the O-1 ALIEN VISA and the P-3 CULTURAL EVENT VISA:
The H-1B3 Visa for Fashion Models
The H-1B3 work visa allows a foreign fashion model to work in the U.S. for a designated employer for a three-year period. In order to qualify the model must be coming to the U.S. to perform services, which require a model of prominence. Not just any model. Prominence means a high level of accomplishment in the field of fashion modeling, evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that which is ordinarily encountered. A prominent model may be one who is famous, or well known in the field of fashion modeling. The model must establish that they are of distinguished merit and ability.
• The position offered or the services to be performed in the U.S., must require a fashion model of prominence.
• The U.S. employer must pay the fashion model, as is the case with all H1B professionals, the prevailing wage for the occupation in the area of intended employment or the actual wage being paid by the employer to fashion models of similar standing, whichever is higher.
• Fashion Models, unlike all other H1B professionals, do not necessarily need to hold a bachelor or higher degree.
The Model must provide evidence establishing that she or he is nationally or internationally recognized in the field of fashion modeling.
The evidence must include at least two of the following types of documentation which show that the model:
• Has achieved national or international recognition in his or her field as evidenced by major newspaper, trade journals, magazines or other published material;
• Has performed and will perform services as fashion model for employers with a distinguished reputation;
• Has received recognition for significant achievements from organizations, critics, fashion houses, modeling agencies or other recognized experts in the field; or
• Commands a high salary or other substantial remuneration for services, as shown by contracts or other reliable evidence.
The O-1 VISA FOR FASHION MODELS
The O-1 alien visa allows foreigners of extra-ordinary skills and talents to visit the U.S. for twelve months. This visa requires that you show: 1) A major international award or prize, or 2) Other significant awards or prizes, or contributions to the field, or well-paid employment, and 3) a consultation report from a peer group, labor union or management organization verifying the alien's credentials and the benefits of the visit.
On the other hand, to qualify under O-1, the fashion model must establish extraordinary ability in business, not in the arts. Extraordinary ability in the field of business means a level of expertise indicating that the person is one of the small percentages that has risen to the very top of the field of endeavor. This requirement is considerably higher than the distinguished merit or ability requirement of H1B visa for Fashion Models.
The P-3 CULTURAL VISAS FOR FASHION MODELS.
The P-3 cultural event visa is accessible to "artists and entertainers" who come to the U.S. to participate in a "culturally unique" event or program, which furthers the art form. This requires evidence of: 1) skills and talents which are authentic and supported by recognized credentials such as prizes or awards, published articles about your accomplishments, and letters from leaders explaining your performance, 2) your performance is "culturally unique" based on newspaper or other written review, and 3) a consultation report from a peer group, labor union or management organization verifying the alien's credentials and how the event is "culturally unique".
An example of a "culturally unique" event might be a model's trade show sponsored by a U.S company to showcasing the beauty and modeling skills of the women of Rio de Janeiro.
You can follow this links:
Immigration Lawyers for Fashion Model Visas
WASHINGTON — There is no doubt that 71% of Latino voters' clear choice on election day, has created a fertile environment for the renewal of legislation that would provide comprehensive immigration reform.
The results of these findings are striking, After a five year battle against any type of immigration reform , some republicans have begun to see a platform to stop their free flight downward move towards a demise of the republican party.
At a recent press conference President Obama was exited in detailing his second-term agenda for immigration reform stating "I'm very confident we can get immigration reform done," (Washington Post Transcript, Nov. 14, 2012) "[M]y expectation is that we get a bill introduced and we begin the process in Congress very soon after my inauguration."
President Obama outlined his amnesty plan as such: I do think that there should be a pathway for legal status for those who are living in this country, are not engaged in criminal activity, are here to simply to work. It's important for them to pay back taxes. It's important for them to learn English. It's important for them to potentially pay a fine, but to give them the avenue whereby they can resolve their legal status here in this country... The President also repeated his support for the DREAM Act, stating he wants to make Administration's temporary amnesty — Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) — a program that provides beneficiaries an "opportunity to earn their citizenship."
The President made it clear that White House staff is already working closely with Members of Congress on immigration legislation. There was a surprise following the republican defeat, when House Speaker John Boehner indicated that Republicans are willing to cooperate on immigration. "I'm confident that the president, myself, others can find the common ground to take care of this issue once and for all," Rep. Boehner said. (Washington Post, Nov. 9, 2012)
Now, Carlos Gutierrez, who spearheaded Mitt Romney’s outreach to Latinos during the campaign, had unkind words for the former nominee Sunday as he joined the growing number of republicans calling for immigration reform.
In a Los Angeles Times interview Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) said, "For too long, both parties have used immigration as a political wedge issue," "But the time has come to find a bipartisan solution."
President Obama states that he is "already seeing signs" that Republicans are changing their positions, and his staff is in discussions with members of Congress on this issue "very soon" after his January inauguration. White House officials will probably not agree to proposals that take constricted slices of the issue because they feel they will have only one chance to push through an immigration bill in the next Congress.
As Obama said: "We need to seize the moment,"
Two old colleagues, Sens. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) spoke after the election about writing a bill that would have a chance to pass next year. "Taking people at their word — like Lindsey and Chuck — if they really want to end illegality, then things are possible," said Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.). "We will fairly and compassionately wrestle with what to do with people who are here illegally."
Graham and Schumer are pushing to revive a proposal they submitted to congress in March 2010 that would enable illegal immigrants already in the U.S. with no criminal record to pay fines and eventually apply for legal status and also create a limited guest-worker program.
Sen. Robert Menendez felt the same sentiment as the President, when he stated that "[W]e aren't going to get a second chance to do this bill, and we want to do this the right way," said Sen. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), who also talked to Graham last week about working on a comprehensive bill that includes a broad path to legal status.
U.S. Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart, R-Miami, is making an assertive drive to restart talks on a comprehensive immigration reform bill that has been stalled in Congress for years in
Diaz-Balart, chairman of a group of Hispanic lawmakers in D.C., said “For too long, both parties have used immigration as a political wedge issue, but the time has come to find a bipartisan solution to this critical issue,” Diaz-Balart said in a statement to the media. “I am committed to passing legislation to once and for all to fix our broken immigration system.”
U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan, R-Longboat Key, seems ready to revisit the immigration reform issue too.
“For too long, Congress has turned a blind eye to our nation’s broken immigration system,”
If Ronald Reagan were alive today, he probably would have cringed when, during last night Presidential debate, Romney explained his concept of “self deportation” to solve America’s broken immigration system. He may have even broken down in tears when Romney staunchly denied any permanent relief to the innocent children, that could benefit from the Dream Act.
In fact Reagan would probably detest the way many conservative republicans have been handling the immigration reform debate and would be worried about the eventual demise of the Republican Party, caused by the stranglehold of anti-immigrant conservatives. Regan, similar to Obama, fundamentally saw America as a land open to immigrants that believe in the “American Dream.” In November 1979 when announcing his candidacy for the presidency Reagan proposed a treaty allowing for full freedom of movement for all workers throughout North America. Even as far back as 1952 when the US immigration policy was still controlled by the very restrictive Immigration Act of 1924, Reagan gave a speech embracing nearly unlimited immigration:
“I . . . have thought of America as a place in the divine scheme of things that was set aside as a promised land . . . [A]nd the price of admission was very simple . . . Any place in the world and any person from these places; ((any person with the courage, with the desire to tear up their roots, to strive for freedom, to attempt and dare to live in a strange and foreign place, to travel halfway across the world was welcome here)) . . . I believe that God in shedding his grace on this country has always in this divine scheme of things kept an eye on our land and guided it as a promised land for these people.
In his January 2011 Obama, in his State of the Union address in 2011, reminded the nation that success in the 21st century can only be accomplished though education, innovation, ,and rejuvenating America's infrastructure. Obama integrated immigration reform as a fundamental element in the "reinventing" of America. He announced that he was "prepared to work with Republicans and Democrats to protect our borders, enforce our laws and address the millions of undocumented workers who are now living in the shadows."
Reagan's and Obama’s dream of peaceful, hardworking immigrants is diametrically opposed to anti-immigration views advocated glibly by Mitt Romney, Martin Levin, Lou Dobbs, Bill O'Reilly, Pat Buchanan, Past Rep. Tom Tancredo of Colorado, and many others who claim the mantle of Ronald Reagan.
Reagan's work in immigration reform was unreserved. At a 1982 ceremony at Ellis Island he spoke emotively of immigrants who "possessed a determination that with hard work and freedom, they would live a better life and their children even more so." In 1986 he signed the immigration reform law that legalized almost 3 million illegal immigrants in exchange for sanctions against employers that knowingly hire illegal workers and for better border protection.
In fact under President Reagan's term, more immigrants became part of the United States legally than under any previous U.S. president since Teddy Roosevelt. Reagan saw illegal immigrants not as criminals but as human beings working honestly for a better life for them and their family. In a 1977 radio show he pointed out that apples were rotting on New England trees because no Americans were willing to pick them. "It makes one wonder about the illegal alien fuss. Are great numbers of our unemployed really victims of the illegal alien invasion or are those illegal tourists actually doing work our own people won't do?" Reagan said. "One thing is certain in this hungry world; no regulation or law should be allowed if it results in crops rotting in the fields for lack of harvesters."
Reagan’s consistently affirmative attitude towards immigrants and immigration was a fundamental aspect of his positive image of America. Republicans that disagree with Reagan's position on immigration would have to, in order to be consistent, discard much of Reagan’s approach to social and economic and social policy. Today's anti- immigration conservatives can continue their fight for immigration restrictions but they should not do so under the guise of Reagan republicanism.
Reagan understood the economics of immigration in the U.S. Congress in preparing to engage in the upcoming immigration reform debate should take in earnest a study from the Cato Institute that concludes that there would be an estimate of a trillion dollar benefit to our country if the most expansive immigration policies are pursued. Economists Peter Dixon and Maureen Rimmer (Peter Dixon is the Sir John Monash Distinguished Professor and Maureen Rimmer is a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre of Policy Studies at Monash University in Australia. The U.S. Departments of Commerce, Agriculture, Homeland Security, and the U.S. International Trade Commission have applied the USAGE model of the U.S. economy. In doing so, they discovered that increased enforcement and reduced low-skilled immigration have a significant negative influence on the income of U.S. households by reducing U.S. household welfare by about 0.5 percent, or $80 billion. In distinction, legalization of low-skilled immigrant workers would produce significant income gains for American households and workers. Under an optimal visa tax the positive impact for U.S. households of legalization would be 1.27 percent of GDP or $180 billion.
In Reagan’s farewell message to the nation he said “I've spoken of the shining city all my political life, but I don't know if I ever quite communicated what I saw when I said it. But in my mind it was a tall, proud city built on rocks stronger than oceans, wind-swept, God-blessed, and teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace; a city with free ports that hummed with commerce and creativity. And if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here.”
Over the last several months Romney has repeatedly told his supporters that he would veto the Dream Act. The act would allow certain youths to earn a legal permanent residency, by attending college or serving in the military. When Obama recently introduced a program similar to the Dream Act, to allow some undocumented youths who arrived before age 16 and who are not older than 30 to apply for both work permits and a two-year protection from deportation, Romney attacked the program calling it a "stop gap" measure only.
Instead of the Dream Act or a Comprehensive Immigration Reform, which the President would like Congress to pass, Romney believes that the best way to resolve the dilema of having 12 million illegal immigration is to permit them to “self deport”. The concept was explained on motherjones.com as “the strategy behind the wave of anti-immigration bills introduced across the country in the last two years. The brainchild of anti-immigration groups like the Immigration Law Reform Institute, and its counsel, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach (who recently endorsed Romney), self-deportation is the intended effect of laws and requirements (such as those passed in Arizona and Alabama) that would make it so difficult for undocumented immigrants to work, rent, or go to school that they will simply "choose" to leave. Anti-immigration advocates like this for several reasons: It has a free-market/free-will gloss to it. It purports to save money on deportation costs. And, most importantly, because it relies on states enforcing immigration via passing draconian laws rather than federal law enforcement/border efforts.”
Now as it happens, Romney is about to lose substantially all the latino votes.
Just before the opening of the Republican National Convention in Tampa presidential candidate A poll of Latino registered voters by Latino Decisions and impreMedia reveals that 65% would vote to re-elect President Barack Obama and 26% would prefer the Republican alternative offered by Romney
On Tuesday Mel Martinez, the former Florida Republican senator and chairman of the Republican Party, tried to minimize Romney's immigration strategy by telling thinkprogress.com that Romney will almost certainly reverse course and take a more “sensible view” on immigration. Martinez argued that Romney’s “self-deportation” policy was simply a product of the difficult Republican primary.
Martinez statement sounds hollow, as the Republican Party has attached it self to Mitt Romney's extremist immigration adviser Kris Kobach .
Kris Kobach, the Secretary of State of Kansas, authored the Arizona anti immigrant law, SB 1070. Kobach is an attorney for Immigration Reform Law Institute, the legal arm of the chameleon organization named Federation for American Immigration Reform, or FAIR. As Rachel Maddow revealed in a recent program, the founder of FAIR is a well-known racist. The seed money he used to start FAIR came from an infamous Eugenics (the same thing the Nazi’s did) outfit.
FAIR is just one piece of a vast and powerful anti-immigrant organization, created over the last 30 years, and orchestrated by John Tanton. His organization has been able to insinuate itself into many of the social and political debates of our time.
Tanton developed many different entities so that it appears that there are numerous advocates for what he sees and the ideal society. Another of his group, the Center for Immigration Studies, acts as so called "think tank" to the anti-immigrant movement. Some other entities he is invalid with is the Coalition for the Future American Worker , Progressives for Immigration Reform, NumbersUSA, Immigration Reform Law Institute, United to Secure America Coalition. These are just a few of his many groups that work in unison trying earnestly to modify America's thinking on immigration.
The Southern Poverty Law Center and Anti-Defamation League have connected these groups with racists, white supremacists, and political extremists.
The Tanton message is blatantly clear - no more immigrants in the U.S. and those that are here should leave.
One can only imagine the scope of the damage to the immigrant community if Romney becomes the president.
Every year thousands of people lose their business. The reason for this can be attributed to many factors. Some stem directly from management, bad business decisions or incompetent employees. Sometimes the problem can be caused by changes in the economic climate. Changes, which appear subtle at first, can slowly take a significant toll on a businesses bottom line When the end is near large businesses turn quickly to bankruptcy lawyers who assist them in filing a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition, enabling a failing business to re organize and negotiate new arrangements with their creditors. But small businesses, unlike their bigger brother find it very difficult to take advantage of the bankruptcy laws. Why this is so is quire clear. Money. The legal fees in these cases generally start at $10,000 and the filing fee alone is $500. Not a surprise that small and even medium size business in trouble cannot afford the high tariff required to file a Chapter 11. Until 2005 a small-unincorporated business could avail them of Chapter 13 of the bankruptcy code. But this chapter was limited to people that owed less than $100,000 in unsecured debts (like personal loans) and $350,000 in secured loans (like a mortgage or car loan). These limitations were generally satisfactory for an individual but in many instances not enough protection for small and middle size businesses.
Luckily the overhaul of the Bankruptcy code provides equal and in many instances better protection for small and medium size businesses than Chapter 11 provides for their bigger counterparts. Under the revised bankruptcy law an individual or unincorporated business with regular income and unsecured debts of less than $360,475.00 and secured debts of less than $1,081,400.00 may be a debtor under chapter 13 of this title. Unlike a chapter 11 the filing fee for a Chapter 13 is $296 and the legal fees generally is approximately $3,500. Now it is possible for a small or medium size business to take advantage of the bankruptcy laws. And the advantages are numerous. All unsecured debts can be reduced, even as low as 5%. And secured debts such as mortgage arrears can be repaid over a 5 year period in easy monthly payments. Under certain circumstances a 2nd mortgage may be stripped and reduced to an unsecured debt. Even IRS taxes can be included. And best of all when the petition is filed the “Automatic Stay“ provision takes effect. Stopping all foreclosures, lawsuits, wage garnishment and creditor harassment.
Upon successful completion of a Chapter 13 plan you will receive an official "discharge" which extinguishes any obligation you have to pay the unsecured debts EVEN THOUGH YOU HAVE NOT REPAID THEM IN FULL. Chapter 13 has saved the business and, you could almost say, the lives of thousands of families throughout the United States.
August 14, 2012 - At 1 o'clock today, USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas held a telephonic conference announcing the much awaited immigration forms required for filing for the "dream Act" on August 15, 2012. He spent some time clarifying the process for Obama’s” dream act” (now called DACA - Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals).
After application, if approved, the Dreamer will receive deferred action, which for a limited period of time grants work permission, and protection from deportation.
Basic requirements are that an applicant must have entered the U.S. before age 16 and are under the age of 31, on June 15, 2012, continuously resided in the U.S. for 5 years before June 15, 2012, does not have certain criminal convictions and are either in school now, or have a high school diploma or GED certificate.
The forms that will be required are:
Once the application is received, it will be reviewed and a notice will be sent the the Application Support Unit (ACS). If the application is insufficient, a request for more evidence will be sent to the applicant. Some applicants may require an interview at the immigration office. Each case will be determined on a case-by-case basis. Once approved, each applicant will receive an employment identification card.
Avoiding Scams and Prevent Fraud
You should seek legal help for childhood arrivals from official government sources such as USCIS or the Department of Homeland Security. If you are seeking legal advice, choose a licensed immigration attorney or lawyer or accredited representative.
For More Information go to:
August 14, 2012 - USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas held a telephonic conference today to announce that the forms required have been printed and are ready for filing on August 15, 2012. Additionally he clarified the process for becoming an applicant for deferred action under Obama’s” dream act” (now called DACA - Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals).
If approved, the applicant will receive deferred action, which for a limited period of time grants work authorization, and protection from deportation. If you entered the U.S. before age 16 and are between 15 and 30 years old, and have continuously resided in the U.S. for 5 years before June 15, 2012, then you may qualify if you do not have certain criminal convictions and are either in school now, or have your high school diploma or GED certificate.
The forms that will be required are:
Once the application is received, it will be reviewed and a notice will be sent the the Application Support Unit (ACS). If the application is insufficient, a request for more evidence will be sent to the applicant. Some applicants may require an interview at the immigration office. Each case will be determined on a case-by-case basis. Once approved, each applicant will receive ann employment identification card.
Avoiding Scams and Preventing Fraud
Make sure you seek information about requests for consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals from official government sources such as USCIS or the Department of Homeland Security. If you are seeking legal advice, choose a licensed attorney or accredited representative.
For More Information go to:
No sooner was Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals announced when numerous non-lawyer businesses began to advertise the "Dream Act."
The Problems with Notarios and Immigration Consultants - These days, just the words "Notario" or "immigration consultant, aroused fear in immigrant communities. Thousands of immigrants have experienced the troubles that ensue Notario "assistance" in legal matters.
When it comes to filing for immigration benefits under Obama's Dream Act it would seem that everyone would hire an immigration lawyer or a BIA-recognized organization to process their application, but that is not what always happens. Throughout the country there is a teeming "quasi" underground business of immigration forms preparation. In may instances, these business call themselves immigration consultants or Notario Publicos, and some even hide under the guise of travel agents and translations services, and other such businesses. They all charge less than licensed lawyer, but they are unable to provide the service of a true immigration lawyer.
The Department of Homeland security as well as many other state governments are preoccupied in the preventing the inevitable mess that results when these people try to complete immigration forms. Recently New York, Governor Cuomo announced that New York State will make a concerted effort to protect its residents from immigration fraudsters who are expected to emerge with the new Dreamers Deferred Action program.
Immigration Consultants run rampant hroughout the immigrant community. New immigrants get confused and believe that an American Notary has the same power and place in our society as that of a Notario in their country. The immigrant believing that a Notario is the same as a licensed lawyer, hires the Notario and in many cases, find themselves in legal "hot water." Although some are honest, hardworking and limit their work to forms preparation without to resorting to providing immigration advice or making believe that they are licensed Immigration Lawyers or have a special connection inside the immigration department. Some of the consultants are actually former employees of the Immigration Service or were U.S. consular employees. Others resort to fraud in establishing qualification for an applicant.
As there is NO LICENSE for immigration consultants and NO EXAMINATION needed, you can imagine the inconsistency in the quality of their work. Consultants, unlike a licensed Immigration Lawyer are not subject to discipline by the Bar Association and normally are difficult to locate when their work product is found defective or fraudulent. One thing for sure, immigration consultants are not permitted to appear at an immigration hearing to represent a client. Not only can they not appear in front of an immigration examiner, they are not permitted to represent anyone in Immigration Court. And there is no guarantee that the Notario completes the immigration forms properly. Improper forms preparation may cause needless complications and possible deportation action.
To make a complaint against an Immigration Consultant click here
Travel Agencies and Translation services. There are some travel agencies and Translation services that go well beyond their corporate charter. They engage in similar activities, that the Notario Publico and the Immigration Consultants but hide their activities by advertising on their windows, Travel Agency or Translation Services when they are actually practicing law without a license. In most every case, these agencies do little more that type up the immigration forms,not knowing what the immigration service in truly asking in each question. In many cases, their clients do not get the "Green Card" they believed was forthcoming, instead they receive a "Notice to Appear" for a deportation hearing in Immigration Court.
How to Select a licensed Immigration Lawyer. There are good reasons to hire a licensed Immigration Lawyer to handle your case. If you run into any problem during the process, you will need legal assistance to resolve it. If your immigration situation is complicated, there is even a greater reason to hire a licensed immigration lawyer. If you're going to hire an immigration lawyer, you need to do your research. A good lawyer will be worth every penny you pay him, but a poor one may may wind up adding to your problems and costing a lot more in the long run.
Here are some tips to help you during your search.
• Get references. Ask friends, family, or colleagues if they know any good immigration lawyers.People are quick to recommend a good lawyer and even quicker to badmouth a bad one. Be careful however, as no two cases are alike, so if your friend had a very simple case, it does not mean that the lawyer has experience with a complication one. Also try to find out about the lawyers personality. Some lawyers have good beside manners, while others are gruff and demeaning. You have to find a lawyer that fits well with your personality. Make sure the lawyer is a member of AILA. Search for a lawyer on the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) website. AILA is a primary association of immigration lawyers and attorneys, so you can be reasonably sure that you're speaking to someone who understands immigration law and policies. While membership in AILA is not a mandatory to practice immigration law, membership can be a good indication of a lawyer's level of commitment to the practice.
• Find articles written by the immigration lawyer or written about him/her. Search the internet for articles written about this immigration lawyer. Make sure these articles are favorable. Look for articles this immigration lawyer has written and read them. In this way you will find out how the lawyer thinks and the depth of his knowledge.
• Make a Short short list of immigration lawyers in your area. Interview the lawyers to find one who matches your needs. Ask about their experience. Find out if they have worked with your type of case before. Immigration law is a complicated specialty, so you'll want a lawyer who is experienced with your specific type of case. At the consultation you will be able to determine if the lawyer is understanding,listens to your problems and answer your question clearly. Look for whatever traits you like to see in your lawyer. Make sure that the lawyer has many years of experience.
• Compare fee schedules. Some lawyers bill hourly while others charge a flat fee. Find out if there are additional costs such as postage, mailing fees or long distance charges. In many cases immigration work can be estimated fairly accurately. Others are quite difficult to predict. An immigration lawyer is more likely to charge an hourly rate for a deportation case, and a flat fee for family related matters.
• Verify credentials. When you believe that you've found a lawyer you feel comfortable with, you should find out if the lawyer is licensed and not under disciplinary action. This link will help you do this.
• Get a Retainer. You should always receive a retainer from the lawyer, which will clearly state the legal fees and other charges and the manner of payment.
• Make sure the person in running the office is a lawyer. Notaries, consultants, or others who are not licensed as a lawyer at times pretend to be a licensed immigration lawyer. Sometimes they are lawyers, but from another country, sometimes they are American lawyers that have lost the license. Look for the lawyer's license on the wall. Some licensed lawyers may not display their certificates, so ask if the person is a lawyer. Look at the business card from the office. Make sure it says that the person is a lawyer or attorney, not an immigration consultant or Notario Publico.
If you decide not to use a lawyer for forms prreparation, you may consider applying through the web with a lawyer designed form processing service such as idreamact.com.
Last Friday, Department of Home land Security senior staff members outlined the process for Obama’s “dream act.” The program is technically called “prosecutorial discretion.” If approved, the applicant will receive deferred action, which for a limited period of time grants work authorization, and protection from deportation. If you entered the U.S. before age 16 and are between 15 and 30 years old, ,and have continuously resided in the U.S. for 5 years before June 15, 2012, then you may qualify if you do not have certain criminal convictions and are either in school now, or have your high school diploma or GED certificate.
As of this writing there is no way to apply today, unless you are in immigration custody or deportation (removal) proceedings. However, The immigration service (USCIS) and immigration enforcement (ICE) are required to prepare a specific application and a process for by August 15, 2012.
In the meantime, you can, get the evidence that will likely be required for the application ready. In this way you will be ready when the final details are announced.
The following should be gathered and copies made.
A birth certificate is likely to be required to establish the applicant’s legal name, date of birth and place of birth, as well as nationality. If you cannot locate a birth certificate and cannot find a copy in your country’s register, you may be able to submit secondary evidence along with a letter of no record from the registrar in your country. Information regarding birth certificates for many countries can be found at the State Department under reciprocity tables: http://travel.state.gov/visa/fees/fees_3272.html
Residence and Physical Presence
You will have to prove U.S. residence or physical presence at certain specific dates: These dates are 1) the date you entered the U.S.; 2) the period between June 15, 2007 and June 15, 2012 (5 years of residence); and 3) proof that you were physical present in the U.S. on June 15, 2012. You can establish this through documentation such as school records, medical records, financial records, employment records and military records are specifically mentioned.
Continuous Residence in the U.S. between June 15, 2007 and June 15, 2012
To prove that you have continuously resided in the U.S. between June 15, 2007 and June 15, 2012, (5 years period required by the deferred action program, you may submit some of the following documents:
• School records (from the school or the school district which maintains records);
• Employment records (from past employers);
• Hospital or medical records (from the hospital or the medical provider);
• Rent or utility bills (from the landlord or the utility company);
• Immunization records;
• Passport entries;
• Birth certificates of applicant’s children born in the United States.
• Medical, school and other records of applicant’s children born in the United States;
• Bank account statements; Insurance bills or records;
• Social Security records;
• Driver’s license or ID records from state and local governments;
• Automobile license receipts, title, or vehicle registration;
• Deeds, mortgages and any contracts in which you have been a party (including cell phone contracts and bills)
• Tax receipts and filings (obtain from IRS or state/local taxing authority)
• Affidavits by churches, unions or other organizations (obtain letters, notarized if possible, attesting to the applicant’s residence. Make sure it includes specific dates that the author of the letter can attest to from personal experience or from church or union records);
If you have had any absence from the U.S. since June 15, 2007, you will have to prove that it was “brief, casual, and innocent,” which is a temporary trip abroad due to emergency or other circumstances outside your control. You can establish this with the the following:
• Passport entries;
• Plane or other transportation tickets showing travel dates;
• Evidence of the purpose of the travel abroad (e.g. attended a funeral or wedding);
• Copy of any advance parole travel document you received form USCIS;
• Affidavits of persons who know you and the reason why you traveled out of the U.S., and for what period of time;
• Any other evidence that could support that the travel wasbrief, casual, and innocent.
Entry into the United States Before Age 16
To prove that you entered the United States before age 16, you can submit the following:
If you entered the U.S. with inspection, submitting copies of:
• The visa and identification pages from the passport;
• The most recent Form I-94 received when you entered.
• Any documents you have showing an extension or change of status;
• If you were a student copies of all Forms I-20 showing status as an F-1 student or F-2 student spouse (front and back); and
• For J visa holders copies of all Forms IAP-66 or DS-2019 showing status as a J-1 exchange visitor (all pages)
• If you don not have this documentation; perhaps it was lost or stolen you could have affidavits prepared for person that can testify that you entered before the age of 16;
If crossed the border and entered the U.S. without inspection, you may provide:
• School records such as transcript showing that you attended school on the dates around your birthday;
• notarized written affidavits from individuals who knew of your entry into the United States
Establishing that you were Physical Presence on June 15, 2012
• You can provide documentation of a specific event on that date, such as a hospital visit, dental visit and the like;
• Work records;
• School transcripts
Everyone will have to prove that they are in school now, or have graduated from U.S. high school or have a general education development (GED) certificate.
• A high school diploma.
• GED certificate.
• If still in school, transcripts and report cards will be good evidence.
If you do not have a high school diploma or a GED, then register immediately for a GED program.
You must show that you have not been convicted of a felony or serious misdemeanor.
If you have had any criminal convictions you should obtain legal counsel before filing ay application A denial under the criminal grounds may result in being placed in deportation proceedings.
Who Can Help you ?
Do not use the services of a “notario” who is not permitted to practice immigration law. To find out more about notarios and the problems that are associated with these entities go to Apsanlaw.com/notarios.
If you need to have the forms prepared for you to submit you can use the services of idreamact.com.
Washington, DC – At three o’clock this afternoon,, USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas and senior members of Department of Homeland Security (DHS) held a telephonic conference to discuss the next steps in processing Obama’s dream. This conference is a follow up to Secretary Janet Napolitano’s June 15th memorandum, which directed DHS accepting requests for consideration of deferred action on August 15, 2012.
During the teleconference, Director Mayorkas provided a brief overview of the development of the process by which certain young people who came to the United States as children may request deferred action (the official name for Obama’s Dream Act).
“over the past three years, this Administration has undertaken an unprecedented effort to transform the immigration enforcement system into one that focuses on public safety, border security and the integrity of the immigration system. As the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) continues to focus its enforcement resources on the removal of individuals who pose a danger to national security or a risk to public safety, including individuals convicted of crimes with particular emphasis on violent criminals, felons, and repeat offenders, DHS will exercise prosecutorial discretion as appropriate to ensure that enforcement resources are not expended on low priority cases, such as individuals who came to the United States as children and meet other key guidelines. Individuals who demonstrate that they meet the guidelines below may request consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and may be eligible for employment authorization.”
He clarified who may request deferred action under this program.