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Can You Change From a TN Visa to an H-1B Visa?

By Carlos Gamino

If you’re like many people, you want to know whether you can change a TN nonimmigrant visa to an H-1B immigrant visa. This guide explains both types of visas, as well as your options.

TN and H-1B Visa Basics

TN nonimmigrant visas are for Canadian and Mexican citizens who want to work in the United States in certain professions. You may get a TN nonimmigrant visa to work in your field without special certifications, degrees or training. But H-1B visas are different; they’re for any foreign workers employed in the U.S. in certain specialty occupations. To get an H-1B visa, you must have specialized knowledge in your field (and you usually must have at least a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent). You need a U.S. employer to sponsor your visa, too.

The reason many people want to change a TN visa to an H-1B is simple: The H-1B visa allows for dual intent. That means you may use it to later get a green card or become a U.S. citizen. (By contrast, you can’t get a green card when you’re in the U.S. on a TN visa.)

Related: What is PERM labor certification?

How to Change a TN Visa to an H-1B Visa

In order to change your TN visa to an H-1B visa, you must have an employer sponsor you. If your current employer is eligible to sponsor you for an H-1B visa, all you need to do is ask and hope that they agree. If your employer isn’t eligible, they may become eligible by completing a labor certification process with the U.S. Department of Labor. Then, they can file the appropriate form on your behalf and pay the appropriate filing fees. Otherwise, you may need to find a new employer to sponsor you for an H-1B visa.

Related: Work visas and authorizations

Can You Change Visa Types on Your Own?

Unfortunately, for most employment visas in the United States, you cannot apply for yourself. You need an employer to sponsor you for your visa. That means your employer must fill out and file the appropriate paperwork on your behalf. The one notable exception to this rule is the investor visa, but it requires you to invest a certain amount of capital in a United States business that employs United States workers.

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Changing From a TN Visa to an H-1B Visa?

Because you can’t petition for yourself, your employer may need to speak to an attorney about helping you change from a TN visa to an H-1B visa. if that’s the case, we’re here to help. Call our office at 414-383-6700 to schedule a consultation with an experienced attorney who can give you and your employer the legal advice you need.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-07-19T11:46:57-05:00September 6th, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on Can You Change From a TN Visa to an H-1B Visa?

What Will Happen to You if You Commit Immigration Fraud?

By Carlos Gamino

Whether you’re applying for green card, a work visa or naturalized citizenship, you’re always required to be completely honest with the United States government. If you’re not completely honest, you could be accused of immigration fraud. This guide explains what happens if the government finds you guilty of committing immigration fraud, and what you can do about it.

What is Immigration Fraud?

Immigration fraud is a broad term, and it can mean any kind of fraudulent activity. For example, immigration fraud can involve intentionally lying on immigration documents or marrying a person so you can get a green card. In any case, failure to be completely honest with the government or intentionally violating laws with the intent to hide information can be considered immigration fraud.

Related: How to seek asylum in the U.S.

What Happens if You Commit Immigration Fraud?

In the best case scenario, The United States government will reject your petition if it finds out that you committed immigration fraud. However, usually the government takes it farther than that. If you’re already in the United States, you’re subject to deportation – even if you already have a family here and have established your life here. If you’re deported, you can be barred from reentering the U.S. for a certain period of time; some people are barred permanently. That means they can never return to the United States.

Related: Will your child automatically get a green card if you do?

What Should You Do if You’re Accused of Immigration Fraud?

If the U.S. Government accuses you of immigration fraud, one of the best choices you can make is to consult with an attorney. You always have the right to hire an attorney to represent you. That’s true whether you purposely committed immigration fraud or you made a mistake and need to remedy it. Your attorney will ask you several questions about your situation, including whether you have an explanation for what the U.S. government is calling “immigration fraud” in your case.

Your attorney will be there to answer all of your questions and help you get the best possible outcome in your situation, whether you simply need to explain yourself to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services or you’re facing removal proceedings.

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Immigration Fraud?

If you need to talk to an attorney about immigration fraud because the government has accused you of committing it, we’re here to help. Call our office now at 414-383-6700 to schedule a consultation with an experienced immigration attorney in Wisconsin who can help you get the best possible outcome in your case.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-07-19T11:36:55-05:00August 23rd, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on What Will Happen to You if You Commit Immigration Fraud?

How Do You Appeal an Unfavorable Immigration Decision?

By Carlos Gamino

Is it possible to appeal an unfavorable immigration decision? Absolutely, but if you’re like many people, you could benefit from working with a Wisconsin immigration attorney to do so. That’s because the process can be complex, and usually, you only have one chance to make an appeal. This guide explains.

Appealing an Unfavorable Immigration Decision

There are two main ways you can ask the United States government to change its decision on your immigration case. One is through an official appeal, and the other is by filing a motion to reopen or reconsider.

What is an Appeal in U.S. Immigration?

An appeal in U.S. immigration is a process by which a person who has been denied an immigration benefit, such as a green card or visa, can ask for the decision to be reviewed by a higher authority. The appeals process can be complex, and it is important to understand all of the steps involved before beginning.

If you have been denied an immigration benefit, the first step is to determine whether or not you have a basis for an appeal. There are several grounds on which an appeal can be made, such as if there was a mistake made in the adjudication of your case, or if new evidence has come to light that was not available at the time of the original decision. Once you have determined that you have a basis for an appeal, you will need to file the appropriate paperwork with the court.

Related: U.S. immigration forms you may need

What is a Motion to Reopen or Reconsider in Immigration?

A Motion to Reopen or Reconsider is a request made to the immigration court or USCIS to review a previous decision. The motion must state new facts or law that were not previously considered, and it must be filed within a certain time frame. If the motion is granted, the case will be reopened and reconsidered. If the motion is denied, the original decision will stand.

Motions to reopen or reconsider are generally filed by the immigrant or their attorney. However, USCIS may also file a motion to reconsider if it finds that there was a mistake in the original decision.

Related: What is amnesty in immigration?

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About an Immigration Appeal?

If you would like to file an appeal or ask the agency that issued the unfavorable decision to have another look at your case, we may be able to help you. Call our office at 414-383-6700 now to schedule a consultation with an experienced professional who can give you the guidance you need.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-05-20T20:34:54-05:00August 3rd, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on How Do You Appeal an Unfavorable Immigration Decision?

PERM Labor Certification for Wisconsin Businesses

By Carlos Gamino

The U.S. government – specifically, the U.S. Department of Labor – requires employers to meet certain criteria before they’re allowed to hire foreign workers who need visas or green cards. One of those requirements is the permanent labor certification (sometimes called PERM), which this guide explains.

PERM Labor Certification for Wisconsin Businesses

For many companies, it just doesn’t make sense to jump through hoops and file dozens of forms with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to permanently hire foreign workers – and that’s why many businesses turn to Wisconsin immigration attorneys for help. Your attorney can help ensure that you have all the documentation you need, then fill out and submit a packet for a PERM labor certification on your company’s behalf. (It’s also worth noting that if you don’t intend to hire these workers on a permanent basis, you need a different type of labor certification. Your attorney can help you with that, as well.)

Related: Simple labor certification

What Types of Employees Can You Hire With a PERM Labor Certification?

You can hire permanent employees with a PERM labor certification. That means your employees will be eligible to apply for green cards, which signify lawful permanent residency in the United States. Lawful permanent residents are allowed to apply for naturalized citizenship after holding a green card for at least five years.

For a permanent labor certification, you must hire:

  • A full-time worker, not a part-time worker
  • A person for a permanent job, not a temporary job
  • For a position that meets or exceeds the prevailing wage or actual wage
  • With reasonable job requirements, which are the same across the industry and cannot be tailored to a particular individual’s background without proving that it’s a business necessity to do so

Do You Need to Talk to a Business Immigration Lawyer About Getting a PERM Labor Certification?

If your company needs to hire foreign nationals for a permanent job, we may be able to help you. Call our office at 414-383-6700 now to schedule your free consultation. We’ll be happy to answer your questions and give you the advice you need.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-07-19T13:58:20-05:00July 19th, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on PERM Labor Certification for Wisconsin Businesses

What is PERM Labor Certification in Business Immigration?

By Carlos Gamino

Businesses that wish to hire foreign employees to fill permanent positions generally need a PERM labor certification from EU S Department of Labor. But what is that, how do you get it, and how does it impact your ability to hire foreign workers? We have the answers.

What is PERM Labor Certification in Business Immigration?

PERM Labor Certification is the first step in hiring foreign workers for permanent positions in the United States. If the employer is successful in completing the PERM process, they will then be able to file an immigrant petition with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on behalf of the foreign worker. Many companies find it beneficial to work with a Wisconsin immigration attorney to file for a PERM labor certification.

Related: Work visas and authorizations

Does Every Business Need PERM Labor Certification?

No, every business does not need PERM labor certification. The PERM process is generally only required for permanent positions that are professional, managerial or involve highly specialized knowledge. For most other positions, a business can simply file an I-129 petition with USCIS. However, there are some exceptions to this rule – businesses may still need to go through the PERM process if they are located in a “Schedule A” designated area or if the position is considered a “critical occupation.”

How to Get PERM Labor Certification From the U.S. Department of Labor

The PERM labor certification program is the process through which employers in the United States request permission to hire a foreign worker for a permanent position. The Department of Labor (DOL) is responsible for issuing these certifications.

To obtain a PERM labor certification, an employer must first place two advertisements for the position in question, in newspapers of general circulation. The ads must run for at least four consecutive weeks, and they must state that the position is open to all qualified applicants, regardless of citizenship status. After the ads have run, the employer must compile a file of potential candidates for the position. This file must contain information on each candidate’s qualifications, as well as evidence that the employer has considered each candidate equally.

After the file is complete, the employer must submit it, along with a labor certification application, to the DOL. If the DOL approves the application, the employer will be issued a PERM labor certification and can begin the recruitment and hiring process.

Do You Need to Talk to a Business Immigration Attorney About PERM Labor Certification?

If your business has open permanent positions that you’d like to fill with foreign workers, we may be able to help you obtain the appropriate labor certification from the U.S. Department of Labor. Call our office today at 414-383-6700 to schedule a consultation with a professional who can give you the guidance you need.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-07-19T14:06:40-05:00July 12th, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on What is PERM Labor Certification in Business Immigration?

Do Kids Automatically Get Green Cards With Their Parents?

By Carlos Gamino

If you apply for a United States green card, your children may be eligible for green cards as well. However, your child’s age and marital status determine their eligibility, as well as whether they need their own green card application. This guide explains.

Does a Child Automatically Get a Green Card When a Parent Does?

Children do not automatically get green cards when their parents do. At minimum, kids need to be listed on a parent’s application for a green card in order for the United States government to process them as lawful permanent residents. The requirements differ based on whether you, the parent, are a United States citizen or a permanent resident (or applicant) yourself.

If you’re a U.S. citizen, you can petition for your children who are unmarried and under the age of 21; you may also petition for unmarried sons and daughters who are 21 or older, and their children may be included on your petition. Finally, you can petition for married sons and daughters of any age, and their children (as well as their spouse) may be included on the petition.

If you’re a lawful permanent resident, you can petition for a green card for your children who are unmarried and under the age of 21; the petition may also include your child’s children. You can also petition for unmarried sons and daughters who are aged 21 or older, as well as their children, on the same petition.

If you are applying to become a lawful permanent resident of the United States, your children will each need their own applications. Even if your kids were listed as derivative applicants on your approved visa petition, separate applications are necessary. Every person who applies for permanent residence, regardless of their immigration status, must file a separate petition.

Related: How long can you stay outside the U.S. if you have a green card?

What Happens if a Child “Ages Out” Before Receiving a Green Card?

Because there are waiting periods before many people can receive a green card, the U.S. Congress passed the Child Status Protection Act, or CSPA. This act prevents children from aging out due to long processing times. That means your child’s age is “frozen” at the time you apply for their green card, which prevents your child from becoming too old to receive one.

Related: Deportation for people with green cards

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Getting Green Cards for Your Children?

U.S. immigration law is notoriously complicated, and regulations and rules can change at any time. For that reason, many people choose to work with a Wisconsin immigration attorney. If you need help applying for green cards for your children, we’re here for you. Call our office at 414-383-6700 or schedule your consultation online – we can answer your questions and help you get your petitions started.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-07-19T14:22:15-05:00May 31st, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on Do Kids Automatically Get Green Cards With Their Parents?

How to Seek Asylum in the U.S.

By Carlos Gamino

If you’re like many people, you know that the United States admits many immigrants under the asylum process. But who qualifies for asylum in the U.S., how do you get it, and is it different from refugee status? This guide explains how to seek asylum in the United States and a few things you need to know before you apply.

How to Seek Asylum in the U.S.

Asylum is a form of protection that allows a foreigner to stay in the United States when necessary. In many cases, the United States grants asylum to people who fear persecution or harm in their home countries. However, asylum isn’t always easy to get, and if you want the U.S.’s protection, you must apply for it.

What Qualifies You for Asylum?

You may qualify for asylum in the United states if you have fled your home country because you fear persecution or harm based on your:

  • Race
  • Religion
  • Nationality
  • Membership in a particular social group
  • Political opinion

Related: Who’s eligible for asylum in the U.S.?

Can You Bring Your Children and Spouse if You’re Seeking Asylum in the U.S.?

If you have a spouse and children, They may also be eligible for asylum based on the same reasons you, yourself are eligible. Generally, you may include a child on your application if your child is under the age of 21 and is unmarried at the time you apply. Otherwise, your child must have their own application for asylum.

When Can You Seek Asylum in the United States?

You can seek asylum in the United States at a border crossing or port of entry, or within one year of your most recent arrival in the country. That means if you are already in the United States and wish to ask to stay, you can do so if your most recent entry was less than one year ago.

Is Asylum Different From Refugee Status?

Asylum is different from refugee status, but primarily only in one way: You apply for asylum when you are at a border crossing or port of entry, or when you are already present in the United States, and you apply for refugee status when you are located outside the United States.

Related: What to know about refugee status in the United States

Can You Work as an Asylee in the United States?

If you have a pending asylum application with the U.S. government, you can apply for work authorization. You can’t apply for permission to work at the same time you apply for asylum. If you’re not sure whether you qualify to apply for work authorization, you should consult with an attorney who can give you the guidance you need.

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Asylum in the United States?

If you are considering filing an asylum application in the United States, you may wish to speak to an attorney about your situation. An attorney can help you fill out and file the appropriate paperwork, as well as explain work authorization and how to get it. Please feel free to call our office at 414-383-6700 or contact us online to schedule a consultation with an attorney. We may be able to help you obtain asylum in the United States.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-05-20T20:52:56-05:00May 10th, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on How to Seek Asylum in the U.S.

How a Company Can Sponsor a Foreign Worker to Become a Permanent Resident

By Carlos Gamino

If you’re an employer who wants to sponsor a foreign worker to become a permanent resident, there are a few steps you need to take. Many employers choose to work with a Wisconsin immigration attorney because the process can be complicated. With that said, here’s what you need to know.

How Can My Company Sponsor a Foreign Worker to Become a Permanent Resident?

The first thing you should do is consult with an attorney. U.S. immigration law is notoriously complicated, and doing the wrong thing could land you in hot water with the government.

Generally, your attorney will help you apply for permanent labor certification through the U.S. Department of Labor to kick off the process. When the Department of Labor approves your labor certification, your attorney will fill out and file Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, on behalf of the person you want to hire. (Your workers can’t fill out and file their own petitions – the government requires your company to do it.)

Related: All about work visas

What Workers Can Your Company File For?

You can sponsor a prospective or current employee who’s already in the U.S. or one who’s outside the country. The person must likely be able to qualify under one or more of the following employment-based immigrant visa categories:

  • EB-1 priority workers
  • EB-2 professionals with advanced degrees or people with exceptional ability
  • EB-3 professional or skilled workers
  • EB-4 special immigrants

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About How Your Company Can Sponsor a Foreign Worker to Become a Permanent Resident?

It may benefit you to work with an attorney to file for immigrant visas for your workers. Your attorney can help simplify the process for you by handling the heavy lifting. If you’d like to set up a consultation with an experienced immigration professional, call our office at 414-383-6700. We’ll be happy to give you the guidance you need.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-05-20T21:06:35-05:00April 6th, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on How a Company Can Sponsor a Foreign Worker to Become a Permanent Resident

Visa Classifications for Nonimmigrant Workers at Your Company

By Carlos Gamino

Many companies need to hire nonimmigrant workers for temporary jobs – jobs that there just aren’t enough Americans to fill. But where do you even begin if you want to lawfully hire immigrants? This guide explains how to get visas for nonimmigrant workers at your company.

Visas for Nonimmigrant Workers: Classifications

Nonimmigrant workers need sponsors – they can’t simply come to the U.S. and start working. That means if you want to hire a nonimmigrant, temporary worker, your company needs to petition the United States government for visas. Many professionals choose to work with a Wisconsin immigration attorney to do so.

There are several types of nonimmigrant visas, which the following table outlines. You must hire a worker who fits into one of these visa categories.

Nonimmigrant ClassificationDescription
CW-1CNMI-only transitional worker
E-1Treaty traders and qualified employees
E-2 and E-2CTreaty investors and qualified employees, and long-term foreign investors in the CNMI
E-3Some specialty occupation professionals from Australia
H-1B1, H-1B2 and H-1B3Free Trade Agreement workers in specialty occupations from Chile and Singapore; specialty occupations related to Department of Defense research and development projects; fashion models of “distinguished merit and ability.”
H-1CRegistered nurses who work in an area with a health professional shortage
H-2A and H-2BTemporary or seasonal agricultural workers and temporary non-agricultural workers
H-3Trainees in fields unrelated to medicine or academics
IWorkers in the foreign press, radio, film or other media
L-1A and L-1BIntracompany transferees
O-1 and O-2People with extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, the arts, business, or athletics, as well as TV production, and the people who support them
P-1A and P-1BInternationally recognized athletes and entertainers, as well as members of internationally recognized entertainment groups
P-2 and P-3Performers who are participating under a reciprocal exchange program, as well as artists or entertainers who are going to perform, teach or coach under a culturally unique program
Q-1People participating in an international cultural exchange program
R-1Religious workers
TNNAFTA temporary professionals who are from Canada or Mexico

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About Getting Visas for Nonimmigrant Workers at Your Company?

Bringing in foreign workers can be a complex process, and it’s one that requires your company to stick to the letter of the law. If you want to get visas for nonimmigrant workers at your company, you can benefit from working with a skilled and knowledgeable attorney. Call our office at 414-383-6700 to schedule a consultation with a professional now.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-05-20T21:12:56-05:00March 13th, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on Visa Classifications for Nonimmigrant Workers at Your Company

What is an Investor Green Card?

By Carlos Gamino

If you’re an investor who has significant capital to put into a U.S.-based company, you could be eligible for a United States green card – and that conveys lawful permanent residency here. That means you can live and work anywhere you’d like, and that you can eventually apply for naturalized citizenship. This guide explains.

What is an Investor Green Card?

In U.S. immigration, a green card is a person’s proof that they’re a lawful permanent resident of the United States. With a green card, you’re legally allowed to live or work anywhere you’d like. A green card is the precursor to naturalized citizenship, too; after you’ve had your green card for a period of five years, you can apply for U.S. citizenship.

What is the EB-5 Investor Program?

The U.S. government created the EB-5 investor program to attract foreign nationals and encourage them to invest in U.S. businesses.

What Are the Requirements for the EB-5 Investor Program?

The standard minimum investment to qualify for the EB-5 investor program is $1 million, though if you plan to invest in a company in a Targeted Employment Area, or TEA, you only need to invest $500,000. The company you invest in must be a new commercial enterprise that was established after November 29, 1990, or that was purchased before that and then restructured or expanded to increase net worth or number of employees by at least 40 percent.

Related: Green card FAQ

You must also commit to creating full-time positions for at least ten qualifying employees (unless the business is “troubled,” in which case you may be allowed to rely on maintaining the current jobs the company has created).

Generally, the best way to find out whether you qualify for participation in the EB-5 investor program is to speak with a Milwaukee immigration attorney for guidance.

Related: All about green card denials

Do You Need to Talk to an Attorney About an Investor Green Card?

If you’re considering immigrating to the United States while investing significant capital in a U.S.-based business, we may be able to help you. Call us now at 414-383-6700 to discuss your options.

Attorney Carlos Gamino

By |2022-01-28T13:06:45-06:00January 15th, 2022|Immigration Law|Comments Off on What is an Investor Green Card?

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