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Immigration Daily September 26, 2006
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Thanks To Retrogression

USCIS has recently trumpeted its success at meeting the Administration's six-month backlog reduction efforts. However, as this graphic shows, much of the credit is due not to the efforts of the USCIS but to factors beyond its control, and it is too early for USCIS to be claiming that the backlog has indeed been tamed.

USCIS has defined "backlog" to include cases only considered to be within USCIS control, those which are ready to be adjudicated. USCIS has omitted the following cases from its backlog count: cases that are pending law enforcement security checks, naturalization test retakes, naturalization candidates awaiting scheduling of a judicial ceremony and cases in which an applicant has failed to respond to a request for additional evidence needed to complete the adjudication. However, the USCIS definition neglects to take into account the effect of retrogressed cases on the backlog. This may have significant impact on the perceived increases in efficiency and the perceived reduction in the backlog.

The re-introduction of concurrent filing allowed USCIS to accept cases which subsequently retrogressed. In these cases, USCIS received fees for I-485 applications which are now listed as retrogressed and thus, officially not part of the backlog. However, to the best of our knowledge, the fees thus received have not been held in a trust account and instead have been expended on resources used to reduce the backlog of non-retrogressed cases. What will happen when retrogressed cases begin to flood USCIS for adjudication? With the revenue from retrogressed cases already spent, the future backlog will very likely see an exponential increase and/or a marked increase in USCIS processing fees.

It is possible that USCIS has created efficiencies through better management and/or better technology. However, the evidence of the backlog reduction does not back a strong claim for these improvements. The explanation above may be a stronger candidate for the true cause for backlog reduction. USCIS will truly deserve accolades if it can maintain its 6-month backlog when retrogression reverses.

We welcome readers to share their opinion and ideas with us by writing to


Deadline For PERM Pointers, Pitfalls And Puzzles Is Tuesday, September 26th

The curriculum for "PERM Pointers, Pitfalls And Puzzles" is as follows:

FIRST Phone Session on Sep 28: Preparing To File A PERM Application

  • Who's PERM is it anyway?
  • How do I get the right Prevailing Wage?
  • Who holds the key to the minimum requirements?
  • What are the best recruitment sources?
  • How do I know when requirements are restrictive?
  • Is this a 2nd Preference or 3rd Preference case?

SECOND Phone Session on Oct 19, 2006: Preparing Form 9089 For Filing

  • How do I avoid a computer denial?
  • How do I fill out Part H to avoid a substantive denial?
  • How do I fill out Parts J & K to avoid a substantive denial?
  • What documentation must I have as back up to the 9089?
  • When is the "magic language" necessary?

THIRD Phone Session on Nov 2, 2006: After The 9089 Is Filed

  • Should I be concerned about audits and how do I best prepare?
  • What do I do if I get an audit?
  • Do I appeal, file a motion to reconsider, or re-file?
  • What evidence must the employee get to prove qualifications?
  • Was the 9089 properly filled out to make the I-140 process easier?
The deadline to sign up is Tuesday, September 26th. For more info, including speaker bios, detailed curriculum, and registration information, please see: (Fax version:


BIA Rules In Favor Of Children Who Aged-Out Despite CSPA
Carl Shusterman writes "Now, in an unprecedented decision, the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) has interpreted the law in a way that will benefit many thousands of aged-out children whose parents have waited in line many years to obtain permanent residence."


CRS Report On Immigration Related Border Security
The Congressional Research Service issued a report focusing on the main legislative issues facing the 109th Congress relating to the movement of people across the border. It will not address interior enforcement issues or cargo security issues.


Help Wanted: Immigration Paralegal
13-person midtown NYC immigration law firm seeks paralegal with 2+ years of experience with business applications: nonimmigrant and immigrant. Experience with family based, naturalization and other applications a plus. Ideal candidate has BA degree, is detail oriented, organized, conscientious. Candidate must also possess excellent writing, communication & case management skills. Competitive compensation package offered. Email resume + cover letter in MS Word format to

Help Wanted: Immigration Consultants
Las Vegas, NV or Phoenix, AZ - Immigration and Citizenship Services, Inc. has immediate openings for immigration consultants. Have plans to expand quickly across America. Immigration consultant will act as liasion between USCIS, the client and the attorney. Experience, including but not limited to E's, L's H's, TN's, OPTS necessary. Experienced only. Typing skills, computer savvy, great verbal and written communication skills required. Fluency in another language not required but desirable. Competitive compensation offered, including paid medical, dental, and vision. Relocation package may be available for right candidate. Contact Fred D. Winchar, business manager at This is a full-time position.

Help Wanted: Immigration Attorney
Manhattan boutique law firm seeks per diem lawyer to prepare and represent high-profile clients at USCIS interviews (AOS, 751, Natz) at NYC, Garden City, Newark. Approx. 40 cases per year. Must know the law and local procedures, be experienced, and have good client rapport. Please send resume, two references, with fee rates to is a blind ad posting.

Help Wanted: Immigration Attorney
Washington, D.C. - USCIS Office of the Chief Counsel (OCC) seeks an experienced attorney for the position of Litigation Coordination Counsel for its Headquarters Office. This position is primarily responsible for assisting in the provision of litigation support in immigration cases involving USCIS operational components. The role of the Litigation Coordination Counsel is to assist in the oversight and tracking of federal court litigation facing USCIS through coordination with OCC counsel located throughout the country and at HQ. Deadline is September 29, 2006. E-mail to apply. For detailed information, including duties, qualifications, benefits, see here or enter vacancy announcement #CIS-COU-2006-0011 in

Help Wanted: Immigration Attorney
New York City, NY - Hodgson Russ LLP, a 225-plus lawyer firm with offices in Buffalo, New York City, Albany, Boca Raton and Toronto seeks an associate attorney for our immigration group in our NYC office. Our group represents multinational corporations, entrepreneurs, athletes, entertainers, scientists and specialized workers. We seek an attorney with experience counseling U.S. and foreign employers. The ideal candidate will have 3-5 years of business immigration experience. Please send cover letter, resume and law school transcript to Mariely Downey:

EB-5 Investor Program
An investor green card with no quota backlog for your clients. A generous finders fee from American Life Inc. for you, if allowed in your state. One of the best-kept immigration secrets... a real estate limited partnership investment of $525,000 in the American Life EB-5 Investor Green Card program in the Seattle Regional Center gives your accredited investor clients speed and freedom. Speedy conditional green card approval, typically in about 1 year. Freedom to live anywhere in the U.S. without being tied to a job or business. No need for day-to-day management of an active business. American Life Inc. manages over 20 properties - over 1,000,000 sq. ft. The oldest active Regional Center, projects range from $5 million to more than $20 million. Want to know more about the immigration benefits of American Life's EB-5 program? Call Mark Ivener at 1-866-767-1800 to answer your EB-5 immigration questions. With more than 30 years immigration law experience and five immigration law books to his credit, Mark Ivener is American Life's Immigration Consultant. For more information visit American Life's website,


Readers can share their professional announcements (100-words or fewer at no charge), email: Readers interested in learning about featuring your event or conference in Immigration Daily, see here. To feature your newsletter in Immigration Daily, see here.

Immigration Event
Immigration & Criminal Law: Navigating The Minefield. Wed., Oct. 18, 2006, 6:00 PM to 9:30 PM. Ramada Inn, East Hanover. Sat., Oct. 28, 2006, 9:00 AM to12:30 PM, Clarion Hotel, Cherry Hill. Robert Frank, Esq. leads panel to discuss the immigration consequences that can result from a criminal conviction, including what can be done proactively to assist clients, and how to navigate the immigration minefield in order to achieve favorable results for clients involved in criminal matters. Presented by the NJ Institute for Continuing Legal Education. 732-214-8500. ILW.COM is a media sponsor for this event.


Readers are welcome to share their comments, email: (300-words or fewer preferred). Many letters to the Editor refer to past correspondence, available in our archives.

Dear Editor:
As stated in M. Malami's letter to the Editor (09/22/06 ID), I also have been wondering what happened to Ali Alexander's letters, much as I disagree with most of them. I hope he is doing well. In the meantime, I always enjoy reading R.L. Ranger's letters, even though I generally disagree with them even more than I do with Ali Alexander's. I will be out of town next week and away from my computer, which may come as a relief to some of the people I have been debating in the glorious free-for-all known as the ID letter section. But any respite from my letters will be brief; I will be back soon. When I return, I hope to see a big stack of letters from both Mr Alexander and Mr. Ranger, as well as many other ID readers whose letters I can respond to.

Roger Algase, Esq.
New York, NY

Dear Editor:
Regarding the guest worker program, we should accept the fact that in order for the House Majority to feel comfortable passing a guest worker program, they need to first pass an enforcement bill. If special interests try to stop the enforcement bill, we may never see a guest worker program. The Immigration Bar needs to bend a little if they want to see a long term gain. Frequently in politics, we must accept a compromise in order to move forward.

Greg Berk, Esq.
Irvine, CA

Dear Editor:
I just received an unpublished BIA decision holding that a motion to reopen should have been granted after an in absentia order was entered due to the alien's failure to attend a master calendar hearing. The alien was stuck in traffic after the well-publicized crane accident in April 2006 in Miami that shut down traffic into the downtown area. The alien showed up a few hours late, the IJ was still sitting on the bench but had already ordered her removed and he refused to reopen the case. I think the BIA decision is significant because it shows that an alien can establish extraordinary circumstances due to a traffic jam, if the case can be properly documented. In support of our written motion to reopen, we filed newspaper articles about the traffic jam and a detailed affidavit of the alien. One journalist called it a traffic jam of "biblical proportions."

David B. Pakula, Esq.
Pembroke Pines, FL

An Important disclaimer! The information provided on this page is not legal advice. Transmission of this information is not intended to create, and receipt by you does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Readers must not act upon any information without first seeking advice from a qualified attorney. Copyright 1999-2006 American Immigration LLC, ILW.COM. Send correspondence and articles to Letters and articles may be edited and may be published and otherwise used in any medium. The views expressed in letters and articles do not necessarily represent the views of ILW.COM.

Publisher:  Sam Udani    Legal Editor:  Michele Kim                        ISSN:   1930-062X