Latest updates

H-1B visa programme: possible changes on horizon
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 28 February 2020

As the US Citizenship and Immigration Services begins to implement its online electronic registration system for H-1B cap-subject petitions for Fiscal Year 2021 – which is a major deviation from prior years – an examination of the additional changes to the H-1B programme which may be made in the future is in order. US employers should be aware of these possible revisions to the H-1B programme and plan accordingly.

Employing experts and foreign employees in Israel
Fischer Behar Chen Well Orion & Co
  • Israel
  • 28 February 2020

In this era of globalisation, there is a growing need for companies and business organisations to relocate foreign workers in order to perform various tasks that require knowledge, expertise or proven management capabilities (whether these tasks be permanent, long term or temporary). This article outlines the steps that employers should take in order to employ foreign workers.

PERM: employers, representatives and agents
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 17 January 2020

Some employers have learned the hard way that the role of representatives and attorneys is clearly separated in the Programme Electronic Review Management (PERM) rule and that a violation of this rule may have serious consequences. Violators of the PERM rule will find their applications denied or worse, as there are several strategies to punish employers that act in bad faith.

USCIS proposes rule to increase filing fees: what employers need to know
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 20 December 2019

The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has proposed a rule to increase the filing fees for most of its applications and petitions for immigration benefits. Some of the provisions in the proposed rule to increase filing fees suggest that US employers or the public may pay the same or more money, but receive less service from the USCIS. US employers should plan and budget accordingly, monitor the movement of the rule through the rulemaking process and watch out for any possible litigation.

PERM: all about FLAG
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 29 November 2019

The Department of Labour has introduced its electronic review officers and launched its new online portal: the Foreign Labour Application Gateway (FLAG). The FLAG portal is not yet up and running for Programme Electronic Review Management applications, but is available for all labour condition, temporary H-2A and H-2B and prevailing wage applications.

Benefits of Cyprus Investment Programme
  • Cyprus
  • 22 November 2019

The Cyprus Investment Programme is ranked among the top 10 programmes in the world for global citizenship. It was established to attract foreign direct investment and encourage high-net-worth individuals to settle and conduct business in Cyprus, thereby boosting the nation's economy. One of the programme's key features is its investment policy, under which non-EU citizens can obtain Cypriot citizenship by making specific investments. This article examines recent amendments to the programme.

Update on implementation of H-1B registration rule for employers filing H-1B cap-subject petitions for FY 2021
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 15 November 2019

In January 2019 the US Department of Homeland Security passed a rule that amended the regulations governing the H-1B cap-subject selection process. One of the biggest changes requires employers seeking to file an H-1B cap-subject petition to register the foreign national with the US Citizenship and Immigration Services online electronic registration system. This article sets out some of the items to be aware of with respect to the online electronic registration system for the upcoming H-1B cap season.

No deal? Post-Brexit admission of British nationals to Swiss labour market
Lenz & Staehelin
  • Switzerland
  • 18 October 2019

The Agreement on Admission to the Labour Market for a Temporary Transitional Period following the Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union and the Free Movement of Persons will provide facilitated access to the labour market for British nationals in Switzerland and for Swiss nationals in the United Kingdom after Brexit. The agreement will serve as a transition regime in the event of a no-deal Brexit and would be entered into for a limited period until 31 December 2020.

Private companies can grant work permits to men sponsored by their families
Pinsent Masons
  • United Arab Emirates
  • 04 October 2019

The Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation recently announced that private companies in the United Arab Emirates may now employ men who have been sponsored by their families on a dependant visa. The ministry has already begun issuing two-year work permits to eligible men sponsored by their families according to the announcement. Until now, only women sponsored by their families were entitled to work. Men were entitled to a work permit only if covered by their employer's visa allocation.

Ministry of Manpower issues codified list of businesses which may employ foreign employees
  • Indonesia
  • 27 September 2019

The Ministry of Manpower recently issued Decree 228/2019 on Certain Positions Permissible for Foreign Employees, which came into effect on 27 August 2019 and revoked all prior relevant decrees on this matter. The appendix to Decree 228/2019 provides a list of positions and business fields in which foreign employees can be employed. The list will be evaluated every two years (or as needed).

New resident status categories for foreign nationals
Nagashima Ohno & Tsunematsu
  • Japan
  • 02 August 2019

Two new resident status categories for foreign nationals were recently put in place in order to cope with Japan's labour shortage. The first of these new resident categories is the specified skills 1 category, which covers individuals who have a substantial degree of knowledge or skill in the 14 initial industrial fields that require additional labour. The second, the specified skills 2 category, covers individuals who have sufficient skills in the specified industrial fields.

Residence and employment implications for British citizens in Malta following no-deal Brexit
  • Malta
  • 21 June 2019

In light of the continuous developments and ambiguity surrounding the Brexit negotiations, as well as the uncertainty facing British citizens who currently reside in EU member states, the Maltese government recently propagated regulations concerning the residence and employment rights which will be upheld for British citizens who already reside and work in Malta. The regulations are set to come into force in the event of a no-deal Brexit.

Stricter language skill requirements for foreign nationals
Lenz & Staehelin
  • Switzerland
  • 07 June 2019

The Foreign Nationals Act has been renamed the Foreign Nationals and Integration Act, with effect from 1 January 2019. The Foreign Nationals and Integration Act has revised the earlier provisions and introduced new ones to encourage and support foreign nationals' integration into Switzerland. Further, the act now includes provisions relating to the integration of non-EU nationals in Switzerland.

New presidential border security and immigration memorandum
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 17 May 2019

President Donald Trump has issued a memorandum to the attorney general and secretary of homeland security as a follow-up measure to a recent proclamation which declared a national emergency in order to address the security and humanitarian crisis at the US-Mexico border. The memorandum confirms that further steps should be proposed to enhance the integrity and efficiency of the existing asylum system.

BALCA approval of equivalency language is double-edged sword
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 10 May 2019

The Board of Alien Labour Certification (BALCA) recently reversed a decision where a certifying officer had denied a Programme Electronic Review Management labour application because the employer had not specified the exact combination of education, training and experience equivalent to a bachelor's degree that would be acceptable. BALCA held that the language used by the employer had been acceptable.

BALCA disregards Form 9089 Section K licence instruction
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 03 May 2019

The Board of Alien Labour Certification recently ruled that there is a lack of clarification about licensing on Form 9089 and that a Programme Electronic Review Management application should not be denied for failure to state the alien's acquisition of a licence. However, the fly in the ointment is that while Form 9089 does not itself clarify this point, the separate instructions to the form do require employers to include licence acquisition.

Statement of changes to immigration rules – implications for Tier 1 (Investor) visa applicants and holders
Forsters LLP
  • United Kingdom
  • 22 March 2019

The Home Office recently released its statement of changes setting out proposed changes to UK immigration rules. The statement contains the long-awaited details of changes to the Tier 1 (Investor) visa, which were announced in December 2018 shortly after the Home Office backtracked from its announcement that the visa was about to be suspended. The proposed changes are significant and clarity is needed with regard to the application of the transitional rules.

Status of British citizens living in Luxembourg post-Brexit
Castegnaro
  • Luxembourg
  • 22 February 2019

The Council of Government recently came to an agreement on the status of British citizens living in Luxembourg in the event that the United Kingdom leaves the European Union on 29 March 2019 without a withdrawal agreement. According to the statement, answers to questions concerning the situation of British nationals living in Luxembourg, as well as Luxembourg nationals living in the United Kingdom, are available online.

EB-1, EB-3 and Other Workers India categories see progress
Fakhoury Global Immigration
  • USA
  • 22 February 2019

This article has been removed at the request of the contributing firm.

Post-Brexit free movement of persons between United Kingdom and Switzerland
Lenz & Staehelin
  • Switzerland
  • 22 February 2019

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, British nationals who take up residence in Switzerland after 29 March 2019 would not benefit from any rights of protections currently granted under the Agreement on the Free Movement of Persons and would thus be considered non-EU nationals. Under Switzerland's ordinary immigration regime, non-EU nationals generally have no right to obtain a Swiss residence and work permit, and Swiss immigration authorities have wide discretionary power when reviewing permit applications.

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