U.S. Immigration Updates – Week of January 30, 2024


Department of State Offers Guidance on H-1B Domestic Renewal Program

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has issued guidance for individuals interested in participating in the H-1B Domestic Renewal pilot program. The program will begin to accept applications on January 29, 2024, and will continue until April 1, 2024, or when all application slots are filled, whichever comes first. DOS provides instruction on applying for the program and answers frequently asked questions such as

  • Which applicants qualify for participation in the pilot program?
  • What documents and fees are required for a domestic H-1B visa renewal?
  • How does an applicant establish that they are working or living in the United States?
  • How long will it take to process an application?
  • How can an applicant check the status of her/his application?

Other questions deal with processing logistics, refusals and ineligibilities, change of employers, change of visa status (from J-1 to H-1B) and family members.

The guidance can be found on the DOS website at: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/employment/domestic-renewal.html.


USCIS May Excuse Untimely Filed Extension of Stay and Change of Status Requests

On January 24, 2024, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) updated its policy guidance to provide that USCIS, “in our discretion and under certain conditions, may excuse a nonimmigrant’s failure to timely file an extension of stay or change of status request if the delay was due to extraordinary circumstances beyond the control of the applicant or petitioner.”

USCIS said that extraordinary circumstances may include, for example, work slowdowns or stoppages involving a strike, lockout, or other labor dispute, or the inability to obtain a certified labor condition application or temporary labor certification due to a lapse in government funding supporting those certifications.

SOURCE: USCIS alert (Jan. 24, 2024).


The content of this article is intended only to provide a general guide to the subject matter. It should not be construed as legal advice. Please contact FGI at info@employmentimmigration.com or 248.643.4900 for guidance if you have specific questions.

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