Immigration Lawyers

Immigration to the United States is regulated by ICE, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, formerly known as INS or Immigration Naturalization Service.
Carosella & Associates’ immigration lawyers also think in terms of ICE in three ways: Individuals, Corporations, and Employees. And we do not think only in terms of the types of visas we can assist you in obtaining. We think in terms of real-world needs.

Individual Issues

There are numerous differences in visa requirements, even where the non-citizen is marrying a U.S. citizen. Is the U.S. citizen resident here, or living outside this country? What happens in a marriage where one party is undergoing an adjustment in immigration status and the couple separates or divorces? What happens when a B-1 visitor, while staying in the U.S., marries a student with F-1 status? What steps does the B-1 visitor take to change that status into F-2?

We are often asked about the procedure for a U.S. citizen to bring an alien to the United States for a period of socialization while they consider marriage. This generally requires a fiancée’ visa, and there are several requirements for obtaining such a visa, other than proving intent to wed.

What effect does separation and divorce have on the status of the immigrant or alien partner? Did the divorce occur before or after Permanent Residence was confirmed or after the alien partner received a Green Card? Was the divorce granted before issuance of the Green Card? Or after the Green Card was issued? We have answers to all of your questions. Our Immigration lawyers work closely with our Family Law attorney to provide you with the most helpful, up to date information in this field with respect to green cards, visas, fiancées visas, and alien or immigrant marriages.

Potential parents not only must pass their agency’s screening, but also meet Immigration requirements. Some may appear to be self-evident but are quite technical, such as whether the child meets ICE’s definition of an orphan, and whether or not the child’s siblings later be adopted? We can help you understand the differences between adoptions under the Hague Convention, and those which it does not cover. These differences are numerous, and even extend to pre-adoption parenting classes. There must be compliance with all adoption procedures in order to obtain citizenship for your adopted child. It seems like a lot of work, but our immigration lawyers know that it is something that can be done.

Corporate Immigration:

The suburban Philadelphia area has seen a growth in corporations, industrial firms, and medical and educational facilities. But first, beware. At Carosella & Associates, P.C., we know that companies want to comply with the law. We also know that companies sometimes lack the necessary knowledge of Immigration requirements for work visas and change of status, which can lead to audits, expenses and fines. In July, 2009, ICE sent Notices of Inspection (NOI) to more than 650 American companies, advising that ICE was about to conduct an I-9 audit to determine if the companies were complying with employee eligibility requirements. This is more NOI’s than were sent in all of 2008. Carosella & Associates, P.C., can help you avoid an I-9 audit and, if you receive an NOI, we can assist you in preparing for it. There is a limit on the number of highly skilled employee visas. There are several visa classifications for foreign nationals with special skills. However, the number available is limited by law to 65,000 each fiscal year (Oct. 1 – Sept. 30). In addition, each year 6,800 skilled foreign workers from Chile (1,400) and Singapore (5,400) are issued an H-1B visa. There is also a cap of 20,000 for US Master’s Degree holders. H-1B visas are valid for a three-year period and can be extended for one additional three-year period. After an alien worker has resided in the U.S. for six continuous years, he or she must leave and remain outside the U.S. for at least one year before another H-1B visa can be issued. In addition, there are categories of green card visa which can be sponsored by the employer. Visas such EB 1, EB 2, EB 3 are for those with extraordinary, recognized and documented ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics or having advanced degrees and/or special skills. These include multinational executives and managers who have been employed for at least one year by a firm or one of its affiliates or subsidiaries, and wish to enter the U.S. to continue to work for the same employer, its subsidiary or affiliate. This includes alien professors and researchers who have achieved international recognition. Executives and Spouses. An employer may need Immigration help for an executive transfer, or to help the transferring executive’s spouse. The executive may have met and married a non-citizen while on a foreign assignment. The American spouse wants an “immediate relative” visa issued so that the spouse can be with the employee. This can take up to 18 months, so we can help you obtain a K-3 visa. The K-3 offers an opportunity for a spouse of a United States citizen to travel here so the family can be together during the ICE review of the “immediate relative” application. The family is united while awaiting approval of the immigrant visa petition which will lead to permanent residency.

Work Permits are Not Labor Certifications. We can assist you in obtaining Work Permits for your employees to remain here, usually for up to a year. This is a speedier process than a Labor Certification, which must go through ICE, and also be referred to state labor authorities. Carosella & Associates, P.C., can help you help your employees obtain a Work Permit and apply for a Certification (and even see if you qualify for Fast Track treatment).
For a confidential consultation and information on how the immigration lawyers at Carosella & Associates, P.C., can put their experience to work for you, call us at (610) 431-3300, or email us.a