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Agencies & Liaison
Department of Homeland Security
Agency Memos, Cables, Letters & Guidance
USCIS Memo on Periods of Admission
(106 KB - 12/20/2006)
12/5/06 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Associate Director, Domestic Operations, regarding periods of admission for H-4s or L-2s and applicants for H-1B status beyond the six-year maximum, as well as the maximum period of admission for H-1Bs who have been out of the U.S. for more than 1 year but were not in H-1B status for a full 6 years. AILA Doc. No. 06122063.
AILA Doc. No. 06122063.
Asylum Officer Basic Training Credible Fear Lesson Plan
(1824 KB - 12/18/2006)
The Asylum Office released a revised Asylum Officer Basic Training Lesson Plan on credible fear determinations dated April 14, 2006. AILA Doc. No. 06121861.
AILA Doc. No. 06121861.
DHS Responds to AILA Request for TPS for Lebanon
USCIS Director Emilio Gonzalez responds on behalf of DHS to a request from AILA President Carlina Tapia-Ruano that Lebanon be designated for temporary protected status.
AILA Doc. No. 06121359.
Langlois Memo on Asylum Office FY 2006 Year-In-Review
(60 KB - 12/12/2006)
An October 10, 2006 memo from Joe Langlois, Chief, Asylum Division, USCIS, reviews the Division’s accomplishments in FY 2006, including productivity, timeliness and backlog elimination efforts; deployment of US-VISIT; telephonic monitoring for affirmative asylum interviews; and sharing of asylum seekers’ biometric data with Canada. AILA Doc. No. 06121264.
AILA Doc. No. 06121264.
Asylum Division Quality Assurance Referral Sheet
(19 KB - 12/12/2006)
The Quality Assurance Referral Sheet is utilized by Asylum Offices when referring affirmative asylum applications to Asylum HQ and lists the types of cases which require review by Asylum HQ prior to service of a decision. AILA Doc. No. 06121263.
AILA Doc. No. 06121263.
10/27/06 Aytes Memo on USCIS Case Management Timelines
(359 KB - 11/17/2006)
An October 27, 2006 memorandum from Michael Aytes, Associate Director, Domestic Operations, USCIS, provides guidance on timeframes related to case processing. The memo covers the rescheduling of interviews and naturalization testing, the effect of an RFE on the processing clock, NOID extensions, and Post-RFE/NOID processing. AILA Doc. No. 06111760.
AILA Doc. No. 06111760.
Aytes Memo Updates AFM Chapter 22 on EB Immigrant Visa Petitions
(535 KB - 10/19/2006)
A September 12, 2006 memo from Michael Aytes, Acting Associate Director, Domestic Operations, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, revises Chapter 22 of the Adjudicator’s Field Manual (AFM). Chapter 22 pertains to the adjudication of employment-based immigrant visa petitions for EB-1 through EB-5 classification. AILA Doc. No. 06101910.
AILA Doc. No. 06101910.
AC21 Guidance Amended Regarding I-140 Portability
A 12/27/05 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Director of Domestic Operations, amends the 5/12/05 Yates memo to clarify how I-140 portability is treated in an adjustment of status application.
AILA Doc. No. 06092763.
Aytes Memo on the Processing of EADs Pending at Local Offices Prior to 9/1/06
(66 KB - 10/4/2006)
In a September 29, 2006 Memo, USCIS Associate Director of Domestic Operations Michael Aytes addresses the processing of I-765 applications that were pending at local offices prior to September 1, 2006 and which have not yet been adjudicated. AILA Doc. No. 06100463.
AILA Doc. No. 06100463.
N-565s To Be Filed at NSC and TSC
(105 KB - 9/25/2006)
Memo from Donald Neufeld, USCIS Acting Director, Field Operations, indicates that, effective 10/1/06, applications for replacement naturalization/citizenship document will be filed at TSC or NSC. Instructions to district offices as to where to forward applications are included. AILA Doc. No. 06092570.
AILA Doc. No. 06092570.
CIS Ombudsman Recommends FOIA Operations Improvements to Reduce Backlog
(353 KB - 9/21/2006)
CIS Ombudsman’s 7/12/06 recommendation to USCIS with seventeen proposed actions and requirements to improve Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) operations and reduce the backlog. AILA Doc. No. 06092155.
AILA Doc. No. 06092155.
USCIS Q&A on New Process for Issuing EADs to Asylees
(57 KB - 9/13/2006)
USCIS Issued a Q&A discussing the new process, effective October 1, 2006, for issuing EADs to asylees. AILA Doc. No. 06091361.
AILA Doc. No. 06091361.
Asylum Division Memo on Fingerprinting Requirements and Issuance of Recommended Approvals
(228 KB - 9/13/2006)
Memo dated 9/12/06 from Asylum Division Chief Joseph Langlois outlining procedural changes requiring fingerprinting prior to the asylum interview and restricting issuance of recommended approvals in affirmative asylum cases. AILA Doc. No. 06091360.
AILA Doc. No. 06091360.
USCIS Memo on Issuance of NTAs
(1102 KB - 9/8/2006)
A 7/11/06 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Associate Director, Domestic Operations, advising of an agreement with ICE regarding issuing an NTA and handling cases in which the beneficiary or applicant appears to be removable, including where benefit applications have been denied. AILA Doc. No. 06090871
AILA Doc. No. 06090871.
USCIS Director Gonzalez's Memo Responds to Ombudsman’s EAD Recommendations
(300 KB - 9/7/2006)
Interoffice Memorandum from USCIS Director Emilio T. Gonzalez responds to Recommendation #25 on Employment Authorization Documents, including EADs for K-1 nonimmigrants, made by USCIS Ombudsman Prakash Khatri. AILA Doc. No. 06090761.
AILA Doc. No. 06090761.
USCIS Guidance on Processing of I-765 Applications
(195 KB - 9/5/2006)
Memo from Michael Aytes, Acting Director, Domestic Operations, dated August 18, 2006, discussing elimination of local issuance of I-688B Employment Authorization Documents by October 1, 2006, and procedures effective September 1, 2006, for processing of interim EAD applications. AILA Doc. No. 06090560.
AILA Doc. No. 06090560.
Legacy INS Memo on B-1 Admissions for Tour Bus Operators
(162 KB - 8/17/2006)
Legacy INS memo from 1998 regarding admission of Canadian and Mexican tour bus operators and other transportation operators as B-1 visitors for business. Courtesy of AILA members Matt Dunn and Ted Ruthizer. AILA Doc. No. 06081766.
AILA Doc. No. 06081766.
USCIS Memo on Adjudication of I-212 Waivers of the Unlawful Presence Bar under
Memo from Michael Aytes, Acting Deputy Director for Domestic Operations discusses adjudication of I-212 waivers in light of the Ninth Circuit decision in
Perez-Gonzalez v. Ashcroft
AILA Doc. No. 06080967.
USCIS Issues Memo on the Adam Walsh Act
Memorandum from Michael Aytes, USCIS Assoc. Dir. Domestic Operations, implementing the Immigration Law Reforms to Prevent Sex Offenders from Abusing Children (Title IV of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006.) Section 402 of the Adam Walsh Act amends section 204 of the INA. AILA Doc. No. 06080264.
AILA Doc. No. 06080264.
USCIS Issues Guidance Memo on IMBRA
(84 KB - 8/1/2006)
A 7/21/06 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Assoc. Dir. Domestic Operations, regarding the amendments made by the International Marriage Broker Regulation Act (IMBRA) to INA 214(d) and 214(r). The Interoffice Memorandum sets forth statutory requirements and adjudication standards. It also provides procedural guidance. AILA Doc. No. 06080164.
AILA Doc. No. 06080164.
Outline for CBP Officer Basic Training Law Course
(3917 KB - 8/1/2006)
CBP student outline of the Officer Basic Training Law Course dated 8/1/06. Information discussed includes the Fourth Amendment, border searches, border crimes and violations, the role of a CBP officer, and more. Guidance obtained through the CBP FOIA Library. AILA Doc. No. 06080190.
AILA Doc. No. 06080190.
ICE Memo: US District Court Transfer of Surrendered Foreign Passports
(50 KB - 7/18/2006)
ICE memorandum discusses procedures for the transfer of surrendered foreign passports from the U.S District Court to ICE field offices. AILA Doc. No. 06071863.
AILA Doc. No. 06071863.
CIS Ombudsman’s Recommendation to USCIS Regarding O Petitions
(305 KB - 6/30/2006)
CIS Ombudsman’s 6/30/06 recommendation that USCIS amend O petition rules to facilitate “extraordinary ability” immigrant employment by extending the maximum initial validity from three to five years and increase the maximum extension length from one to five years. AILA Doc. No. 06063080.
AILA Doc. No. 06063080.
USCIS Issues Guidance on Affidavits of Support
Memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Director for Domestic Operations, instructs the field on implementation of new regulations on affidavits of support, and addresses the point at which the affidavit must be sufficient.
AILA Doc. No. 06063013.
USCIS Responds to Ombudsman Proposal to Change Affirmative Asylum Process
Memorandum from Dr. Emilio Gonzalez, Director, USCIS, responding to and rejecting recommendations of the CIS Ombudsman to severely change the affirmative asylum process.
AILA Doc. No. 06063072.
USCIS Memo on Effect of Age-Out Provisions on Preference Relatives and Immediate Family Members
(518 KB - 6/28/2006)
Guidance from Michael Aytes, USCIS Associate Director for Domestic Operations, regarding the effect of age-out provisions on preference relatives and immediate family members under the CSPA and Form I-539 adjudications for V status. AILA Doc. No. 06062870.
AILA Doc. No. 06062870.
CIS Ombudsman’s Recommendation to Implement Online Change of Address Procedure
(277 KB - 6/9/2006)
CIS Ombudsman’s 6/9/06 recommendation that USCIS immediately implement an online change of address procedure to supplement the current Form AR-11 process. AILA Doc. No. 06060980.
AILA Doc. No. 06060980.
USCIS Memo on AC21 Section 103 Exemption from H-1B Cap
(95 KB - 6/8/2006)
Guidance from Michael Aytes, USCIS Associate Director for Domestic Operations, regarding exemption from the H-1B cap. The definition of "employed at" is addressed. AILA Doc. No. 06060861.
AILA Doc. No. 06060861.
USCIS Memo on "Permanent Offer" for Outstanding Professors and Researchers
(99 KB - 6/8/2006)
A 6/6/06 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Director for Domestic Operations, addressing the definition of "permanent employment" for purposes of EB-1 outstanding professors and researchers. AIlA Doc. No. 06060860.
AILA Doc. No. 06060860.
CIS Ombudsman’s Recommendation Regarding Family-Based Immigrant Petitions
(316 KB - 5/19/2006)
CIS Ombudsman’s 5/19/06 recommendation that USCIS implement up-front processing of immigration benefits for family-based adjustment of status applications because it will enhance security and process integrity, improve customer service, and increase USCIS efficiency. AILA Doc. No. 06051980.
AILA Doc. No. 06051980.
USCIS Revises AFM Guidance on Naturalization Test Disability Waiver
(254 KB - 5/19/2006)
A 5/10/06, memo and AFM revisions from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Associate Director, providing guidance on reviewing N-648s for naturalization test waivers, including the qualifications of the certifying medical professional and the contents of certification of disability. AILA Doc. No. 06051962.
AILA Doc. No. 06051962.
ICE Memo on Removal Proceedings Involving Aliens with Military Service
(153 KB - 5/16/2006)
A 6/21/04 memo from Marcy Foreman, ICE Acting Director, Office of Investigations, amending ICE policy on commencement of proceedings against aliens with military service, outlines factors to be considered in the exercise of prosecutorial discretion. AILA Doc. No. 06051664.
AILA Doc. No. 06051664.
USCIS Memo on Disclosing Petitioners' Criminal Histories to Beneficiaries
(75 KB - 5/15/2006)
A 5/3/06 memo from Robert Divine, USCIS Acting Deputy Director, addressing the concerns involved in disclosing certain information relating to petitioners' criminal histories to potential beneficiaries. AILA Doc. No. 06051563.
AILA Doc. No. 06051563.
USCIS Memo on Legal and Discretionary Analysis for Adjudication
(89 KB - 5/15/2006)
A 5/3/06 memo from Robert Divine, USCIS Acting Deputy Director, setting forth a process for analyzing legal eligibility and exercise of discretion in adjudications. 06051562.
AILA Doc. No. 06051562.
USCIS on Scheduling Naturalization Interviews After Background Checks
(222 KB - 5/11/2006)
A 4/26/05 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Associate Director, Domestic Operations, instructing the field with respect to scheduling of naturalization applications after the results of FBI fingerprint and name checks. AILA Doc. No. 06051164.
AILA Doc. No. 06051164.
USCIS Memo on H-1B Cap Exemption for Master's or Higher Degrees from U.S. Institutions
(165 KB - 5/8/2006)
A 5/2/06 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Associate Director, Domestic Operations, regarding evaluation of eligibility for the exemption from the H-1B cap for graduates of U.S. master's or higher programs. AILA Doc. No. 06050876.
AILA Doc. No. 06050876.
ICE Prosecutorial Discretion Memo
(1009 KB - 5/5/2006)
A 10/24/05 memo from William Howard, ICE Principal Legal Advisor, discussing factors to be considered prior to commencement or continuation of removal proceedings. AILA Doc. No. 06050511.
AILA Doc. No. 06050511.
U.S. Attorney Office Remand Recommendations
(71 KB - 5/5/2006)
A 5/10/05 unsigned memo from Appellate Counsel, Office of the Principal Legal Advisor, ICE, to U.S. Attorney Offices outlining process for seeking ICE concurrence on recommendations to remand federal court immigration cases back to the Board of Immigration Appeals. AILA Doc. No. 06050519.
AILA Doc. No. 06050519.
ICE Memo on Changes to NSEERS
(84 KB - 5/5/2006)
A 1/8/04 memo from Victor Cerda, ICE Acting Principal Legal Advisor, discussing changes to National Security Entry Exit Registration System (NSEERS) special registration program. AILA Doc. No. 06050512.
AILA Doc. No. 06050512.
CIS Ombudsman Proposes Severe Changes to Asylum Process
(1146 KB - 4/24/2006)
A 3/20/06 proposal by Prakash Khatri, CIS Ombudsman, proposing, among other things, to limit the filing of asylum applications with USCIS to persons in nonimmigrant status, charge a fee for asylum applications, and shift authority for credible fear assessments to ICE. AILA Doc. No. 06042469.
AILA Doc. No. 06042469.
DHS/ICE New Orleans Updates Contact Information
(34 KB - 4/17/2006)
A 4/14/06 memo from Stan Weber, USCIS Deputy Chief Counsel, New Orleans, providing the updated contact information for the New Orleans ICE Office. AILA Doc. No. 06041711.
AILA Doc. No. 06041711.
CIS Ombudsman’s Recommendation Regarding DNA Testing
(313 KB - 4/12/2006)
CIS Ombudsman’s 4/12/06 recommendation that USCIS accept DNA test results as secondary evidence of family relationship, to initiate a DNA test pilot project to study the impact of requiring DNA testing as evidence of family relationship, and more. AILA Doc. No. 06041280.
AILA Doc. No. 06041280.
CBP Memo Regarding New Nonimmigrant Visa Classification E-3
(55 KB - 4/7/2006)
A 9/19/05 memo from Michael Hrinyak, CBP Acting Executive Director, advising of the new E-3 nonimmigrant classification created for Australian nationals in specialty occupations and their spouses and children pursuant to the Australian Free Trade Agreement. AILA Doc. No. 06040712.
AILA Doc. No. 06040712.
CBP I-192 Waiver Checklist for Blaine Port of Entry
(300 KB - 3/31/2006)
CBP Checklist of documentation required at the Blaine Port of Entry by an otherwise inadmissible alien applying for permission to temporarily enter the United States pursuant to an I-192 (Application for Advance Permission to Enter as a Non-Immigrant) waiver. AILA Doc. No. 06033167.
AILA Doc. No. 06033167.
CIS Ombudsman’s Recommendation on NTA Issuance
(278 KB - 3/20/2006)
CIS Ombudsman’s 3/20/06 recommendation that USCIS standardize its policy on issuing Notices to Appear (NTAs) to provide that NTAs be issued and filed with the immigration court in all cases where, as a result of adjustment of status denial, the applicant is out of status. AILA Doc. No. 06032082.
AILA Doc. No. 06032082.
CIS Ombudsman’s Recommendation Regarding Military Fingerprinting Requirements
(207 KB - 3/20/2006)
CIS Ombudsman’s 3/20/06 recommendation that USCIS eliminate fingerprinting requirements for active duty U.S. military personnel in naturalization application processes. AILA Doc. No. 06032081.
AILA Doc. No. 06032081.
CIS Ombudsman’s Recommendation Regarding Employment Authorization Documents
(287 KB - 3/20/2006)
CIS Ombudsman’s 3/20/06 recommendation that USCIS issue multi-year EADs, have validity dates start from the expiration date of the previous issued document, and amend regulations so K-1 nonimmigrants are not subject to breaks in employment authorization. AILA Doc. No. 06032080.
AILA Doc. No. 06032080.
USCIS Revises Adjudicator's Field Manual Regarding Posting Requirements for Schedule A Precertified Visa Petitions
(111 KB - 2/16/2006)
USCIS updated Adjudicator's Field Manual guidance on posting requirements for Schedule A visa petitions filed before and after the effective date of the PERM regulations on March 28, 2005. AILA Doc. No. 06021661.
AILA Doc. No. 06021661.
Memo Regarding Delegation of Authority for I-751, "Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence"
(71 KB - 2/13/2006)
A 1/30/06 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Associate Director, delegating authority to USCIS Service Center Directors to deny I-751 petitions under certain circumstances. AILA Doc. No. 06021313.
AILA Doc. No. 06021313.
Memo Regarding Adopted Decision on Burden of Proof in Petitions and Applications
(178 KB - 12/21/2006)
A 1/11/06 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Director for Field Operations, confirming that “preponderance of the evidence” is the burden of proof in INA § 316(b) preservation of residence proceedings and generally in other petition and application proceedings. AILA Doc. No. 06021014.
AILA Doc. No. 06021014.
USCIS on Rescheduling Interviews and Handling Failures to Appear for Interviews
(305 KB - 1/26/2005)
A 11/23/05 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Director of Domestic Operations, providing guidance on evaluating requests for rescheduling interviews and handling failures to appear for scheduled interviews. AILA Doc. No. 06012665.
AILA Doc. No. 06012665.
CBP Responds to Concerns from Community-Based Organizations
(330 KB - 1/25/2006)
A 12/6/05 letter from Jayson Ahern, CBP Assistant Commissioner, responding to concerns expressed by a group of community-based organizations, including AILA, addressing questions related to treatment at airports of Arab-American pilots, continuation of NSEERS, and FOIA. AILA Doc. No. 06012564.
AILA Doc. No. 06012564.
USCIS Extends Validity of Medical Certifications on Form I-693
(255 KB - 1/17/2006)
A 1/11/06 memor from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Associate Director for Domestic Operations, temporarily extending the validity of civil surgeon endorsements on Form I-693 for certain adjustment of status applicants. AILA Doc. No. 06011764.
AILA Doc. No. 06011764.
USCIS Provides Guidance on Applications for U Nonimmigrant Status
(277 KB - 1/17/2006)
A 1/6/06 memo from Michael Aytes, USCIS Acting Associate Director for Domestic Operations, providing guidance to USCIS officers in the field regarding the U nonimmigrant classification for victims of certain qualifying criminal activity. AILA Doc. No. 06011763.
AILA Doc. No. 06011763.
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