Archives for February 2009

Premium Processing Service Expanded for Certain Form I-140 Petitions

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will expand Premium Processing Service for designated Forms I-140 (Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker) to include alien beneficiaries who have reached, or are reaching, their limitation of stay in H-1B nonimmigrant status.  Currently, only certain alien beneficiaries who are in H-1B nonimmigrant status at the time of filing may request premium processing for Form I-140. 

Beginning March 2, 2009, USCIS will accept Form I-907 (Request for Premium Processing Service) for alien worker petitions filed on behalf of alien beneficiaries who, as of the date of filing the Form I-907:




  • Are the beneficiary of a Form I-140 petition filed in a preference category that has been designated for premium processing service;


  • Have reached the sixth-year statutory limitation of their H-1B stay, or will reach the end of their sixth year of H-1B stay within 60 days of filing;


  • Are only eligible for a further H-1B extension under section 104(c) of the American Competitiveness in the Twenty-first Century Act of 2000 (AC21); and


  • Are ineligible to extend their H-1B status under section 106(a) of AC21.

Section 104(c) of AC21 permits applicants to extend their stay in H-1B nonimmigrant status in increments of up to three years, provided they are the beneficiary of an approved Form I-140 and an immigrant visa is not immediately available.  Section 106(a) of AC21 permits applicants to extend their stay in H-1B nonimmigrant status in increments of up to one year, provided the Form I-140 petition or underlying labor certification has been pending for at least 365 days. 


Premium Processing offers 15 calendar day-processing for designated employment-based petitions and applications upon request.  There is a nonrefundable fee of $1,000 for this service.  During the 15-day period, USCIS will issue an approval or denial notice, a notice of intent to deny, a request for evidence, or open an investigation for fraud or misrepresentation.

If you have a question about this topic or any immigration related question, please call me at 616-233-9300 or email me at info@mirquelaw.com to schedule an appointment.

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Non-Minister Special Immigrant Religious Worker Expiring 03/06/2009

On March 6, 2009, the category covering non-minister special immigrant religious workers will expire. The non-minister religious worker category includes professional or non-professional capacities within a religious vocation or occupation. Therefore, individuals under the non-minister category must adjust their status to permanent residence or be admitted before March 6, 2009. Unless there is a Congressional extension of the expiration date, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will suspend further processing of any pending applications under the non-minister category. The expiring category does not affect individuals applying under the minister category of the program. If the program is extended beyond March 6, 2009, get updates by calling my office at (616) 233-9300 or check out the USCIS website www.uscis.gov.

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