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California’s Sanctuary State Law Will Stand

As reported by the Los Angeles Daily News, the Supreme Court of the United States will not hear the Trump Administration’s challenge to California’s sanctuary state law. Thus, the state’s critically important 2017 law that provided additional protections to immigrants has been upheld and it will remain in place. Below, our Los Angeles immigration law …

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Trump Administration Proposes New Asylum Restrictions: Seeks to Curtail Migrant Rights

According to a report from NBC News, the Trump Administration has rolled out a new proposal that would make it far more difficult for immigrants to claim asylum in the United States. The sweeping changes are President Trump’s most restrictive proposal yet. Here, our asylum attorney explains what we know about the Trump Administration’s latest attempt …

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Supreme Court is Set to Release Major DACA Decision: Here is What is at Stake

We are approaching the eight-year anniversary of President Obama’s announcement of the creation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. In the coming weeks, the Supreme Court of the United States will weigh in on the future of the program.  In the case of Department of Homeland Security v. Regents of the University …

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Understanding Immigration Law: Is it a Bad Sign to Receive a Request for Evidence?

A Request for Evidence (RFE) is a type of document issued by the USCIS that seeks additional information from a petitioner/applicant. RFEs are relatively common. As an example, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) reports that a Request for Evidence is issued in nearly 25 percent of H-1B visa petitions.  If you just …

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USA Today Report: Amid COVID-19 Pandemic, Essential Workers are Still Facing Deportation

According to a report from USA Today, some essential workers are at risk of being deported from the United States. The journalists highlight the distressing and unjust story of a 48-year-old California mother of four who, after repeatedly receiving humanitarian relief, is suddenly set to be deported to Mexico. Despite living in the country for …

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Are Muslim Visa Applicants Dealing With Unfair Administrative Processing Delays?

Administrative processing is not something that’s exclusively for Muslims or people from majority Muslim countries. However, it does feel that way because so many of my clients are from Muslim countries or are Muslim. I think part of the explanation for why so many people are stuck in administrative processing is that administrative processing is …

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COVID-19 Treatment Will NOT Be Used Against Immigrants in a Public Charge Test, But Fear Over Rule Remains

In August of 2019, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the Trump Administration’s radical expansion of the public charge rule. The regulatory change makes it more difficult for lower income and medically vulnerable immigrants and immigrant families to get green cards.  As the COVID-19 pandemic hits the country, there are serious concerns that …

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Application Window Open: Undocumented Immigrants Can Now Apply for COVID-19 Relief in California

The COVID-19 outbreak is a serious public health and economic crisis. Unfortunately, undocumented immigrants—who have been disproportionately affected by government shutdowns—have been largely left out of federal financial support programs. Last month, the state of California created a first of its kind fund to help support undocumented immigrants.  The fund is now valued at $125 …

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H-1B Employees and Layoffs: What to Know About Your Immigration Status

The California Department of Health recommends social distancing to slow the transmission of COVID-19. An unfortunate consequence of the necessary public health measures is that there has been tremendous economic disruption. As reported by CNBC, 36.5 million American workers were laid off in an eight-week period following the outbreak of the virus.  Non-immigrant employment visa …

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Preventable Tragedy: 57-Year-Old Man Dies of COVID-19 in ICE Custody in Southern California

According to a report from The Washington Post, a 57-year-old man has died of COVID-19 at the Otay Mesa Detention Center in San Diego, California. Originally from El Salvador, Carlos Escobar-Mejia was reportedly taken into custody by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in January. Prior to that, he had been living in the United States …

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What Can I Expect at an Immigration Biometrics Appointment in California?

Biometrics is a scientific term that describes the unique anatomical data that can be used to identify a person. Fingerprints are probably the most well-known example of a form of biometric data that is used by authorities. If you are applying to become a permanent resident, you will be required to attend a biometrics appointment …

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Immigrant Rights Advocates Tried to Donate Protective Masks to the Otay Mesa Detention Center—they Were Turned Away at the Gates

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) epidemic is hitting communities throughout the country. The California Department of Public Health has confirmed 43,464 cases of COVID-19 in the state as of April 28th. While everyone is at risk of respiratory disease, the situation is especially dire in places where true social distancing is impossible, such as in immigration detention …

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California Federal Judge: Lack of Social Distancing a Serious Problem at Immigration Detention Facilities

According to a report from CBS KPIX San Francisco Bay Area, United States District Court judge Vince Chhabria has ordered Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to provide comprehensive information regarding the social distancing protocols at two California-based detention centers:  Yuba County Jail (Marysville, CA); and Mesa Verde ICE Processing Center (Bakersfield, CA).  After additional details …

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Green Card Through Marriage: How Do You Prove that Your Relationship Is Real?

Through a marriage to an American citizen, an immigrant can become a lawful permanent resident in the United States. Indeed, marital relationships are among the most common and straightforward paths to a green card. Though, getting a green card through marriage is not as simple as checking a few boxes.  Quite the contrary, there are …

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What To Do If Your Green Card Expires Before Your Divorce Has Been Finalized

  Let’s say you have a two-year conditional green card, your marriage relationship is not going well, you have separated from your spouse, you’re thinking about getting a divorce and your two-year conditional green card is set to expire. This puts you in a bit of a pickle, and you are wondering what you should …

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President Trump’s 60-Day Immigration Moratorium: What You Need to Know

According to reporting from the Los Angeles Blade, President Trump has signed an Executive Order that temporarily restricts immigration for a period of 60 days. The plan was initially announced on the President’s Twitter account, as a characteristically vague and overwrought declaration: “I will be signing an Executive Order to temporarily suspend immigration into the …

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California Creates $75 Million COVID-19 Relief Fund to Support Undocumented Immigrants—It is an Important Step, But More is Needed

California’s ‘Stay Home’ order is a crucial public safety measure designed to slow the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus). Unfortunately, a consequence of the temporary closure of non-essential businesses is a significant economic dislocation. While there are state and federal policies in place to help provide financial relief to people in need, undocumented immigrants have largely …

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State Department Provides Updated Visa Guidance for Medical Professionals

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak has brought the country to a near standstill. While California has managed to control the spread of the virus better than many other states, the impact of COVID-19 is still devastating. The California Department of Public Health reports that nearly 25,000 cases have already been confirmed as of April 15th.  The …

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The COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Pandemic has Derailed the Citizenship Process for Thousands of Immigrants

According to a report from Buzzfeed News, the coronavirus outbreak has disrupted the citizenship process for several thousands of immigrants. The culmination of what can be a decades-long journey for many people has come to a halt right before the finish line. Many people who have applied for citizenship through naturalization are suddenly dealing with …

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Lawsuit: ICE Must Release Vulnerable Detainees in California Amid COVID-19 Outbreak

On April 7th, 2020, the Los Angeles Times reported that immigration rights advocates in California—including the ACLU and the SPLC—have filed a lawsuit against Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) seeking the immediate release of detainees who are most vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19 (coronavirus).  The legal action comes as an increasing number of immigrant …

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Immigrants Denied Access to Many State and Federal Benefits

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has brought the United States—and much of the world—to a virtual standstill. California is under a ‘Stay-at-Home’ order—meaning all residents are required to shelter in place, except for essential activities. Many businesses are temporarily closed. An unfortunate consequence of the necessary public health measure is a sharp increase in unemployment.   In …

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Is The Corona Virus Preventing You From Travel To US Before Immigrant Visa Expires?

  I’m getting a lot of questions from people about how the corona virus Covid-19 is going to impact people who are abroad and who are seeking to enter the US with immigrant visas. Before we get into the questions, I want to say that I hope you’re well and safe and that you’re practicing …

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