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Immigration Daily July 10, 2008
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Comment

DOL Grasps At Straws

The world is laughing at DOL today. From DOL's own press release: "LawLogix is a company that designs and sells software to businesses that utilize the permanent labor certification program. LawLogix submitted more than 100 applications using the permanent program's online filing system in the last year, apparently for the sole purpose of testing the parameters of the department's electronic processing system." DOL determined that this was improper behavior, so ... it debarred LawLogix as a PERM employer! The press release says "Debarring this company for filing false information demonstrates the department's ongoing commitment to safeguard the integrity of the permanent labor certification process". Note: This debarment pertains to LawLogix as an employer - NOT as software provider.

Immigration software companies need to know the parameters of DOL's software (for example, what is the maximum number of characters permitted in the last name field of the ETA 9089 electronic form). DOL's PERM software is finicky, - what's more, DOL denies PERM applications even with minor errors or typos. We understand that all the major immigration software providers attempted to engage DOL in discussion to ensure that their software would be compatible with DOL's, and got the brush off from DOL. Furthermore, DOL's software is user-unfriendly. A law firm cannot track all their cases in one place, instead DOL's system permits tracking only on an employer-by-employer basis. Naturally, the software companies remedy this defect, since it is impossible for a government agency to become a writer of software for all its users. Recognizing this, many government agencies have published xml standards, permitting 3rd party vendors to write software compatible with that of the agency. A notable example is the IRS, the result is easy tax form filing for millions of people using software like Quickbooks, Money, etc. Writing standards takes resources, which DOL may not have the budget for. In this situation the only reasonable course for a software vendor is to set up an account and test, which is exactly what LawLogix did. And DOL thinks this is improper, and issues a press release! What does one make of this - should one laugh or cry?! (Laugh because DOL is inadvertently endorsing LawLogix's thorough testing procedures, or cry because prospective customers will erroneously believe that they cannot use LawLogix software to file PERM applications?!)

DOL issued yet another press release about yet another law firm: "Last year, the department began auditing applications filed by Cohen & Grigsby as a result of information indicating the firm may have improperly advised its clients regarding the recruitment of U.S. workers. Because of concerns identified in the audits, the department is requiring supervised recruitment for certain applications filed by Cohen & Grigsby." Contradicting itself on the same page, the press release says that DOL had "begun placing pending permanent labor certification applications filed by the Cohen & Grigsby law firm into department supervised recruitment." Which is it - certain applications or all pending applications? Can DOL not issue a clear press release? Or is it intentionally obfuscating? And why is a press release necessary? Is every employer or attorney to be placed into supervised recruitment in the future to be a subject of a future press release? Is character assassination by press release a secret provision within the PERM rule for those who incur DOL's wrath?

In fairness, we must compliment a part of DOL's edicts today. In the latter press release, DOL says "The department's regulations require employers to "test" the labor market for U.S. workers in a manner that is ... fair". Finally, DOL gets some of its own regulations right - the recruitment mandated under 20 CFR 656 is a labor market test - it is not intended to be a recruitment process culminating in the hiring of a US worker. However, we stand by our long-stated position that nothing in 212(a)(5)(A) permits DOL to shove a labor market test down employers' throats. In other words, 20CFR656 - in both pre-PERM and PERM versions - is ultra vires.

Lets take all the three issues above together, and see what pattern is painted thereby. First, DOL debars an immigration software provider ... as an employer! Second, DOL places some of a law firm's PERM applications into supervised recruitment. Third, DOL admits PERM recruitment is only a test. The pattern we discern is that this is DOL in crisis control mode, after beginning its attack on the bar and the misstep of taking on the immigration bar's largest firm. DOL will likely throw in the towel shortly on almost all the Fragomen applications that it is currently auditing (a few will make their way to BALCA or the federal courts). As it prepares for a retreat from the major effort involved in auditing thousands of applications, it is growling all the way on minor issues and hoping no one notices that it has only gums, no teeth. DOL would do better to realize that there is no graceful way out here. When you are in a hole, the first rule is to stop digging! Then fess up, say you are sorry, and get on with your job. Perhaps we are overly optimistic, but we believe that even DOL will learn these truths soon. If not, Congress will have to step in, and perhaps it is already doing so as we write this.

We welcome readers to share their opinion and ideas with us by writing to editor@ilw.com.


Focus

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Article

Latest In Consular Processing
Greg Siskind, et al. share recent citations from this recently concluded seminar series.

Bloggings: July 10, 2008
Greg Siskind shares the latest entries to his blog.

To submit an Article for consideration, write to editor@ilw.com.


News

DOL Initiates Supervised Recruitment Of PERM Applications By A Law Firm
DOL announced that it has begun placing pending permanent labor certification applications filed by the Cohen & Grigsby law firm into department-supervised recruitment.

DOL Debars Immigration Software Company As Employer
DOL announced that it has debarred LawLogix Group Inc. from filing applications for permanent labor certification for its own employees.

USCIS Revises Instructions On Biometric Changes For Re-Entry Permits And Refugee Travel Documents
USCIS issued revised instructions for USCIS Form I-131, Application for Travel Document.

USCIS Continues Suspension Of Premium Processing Service For Religious Workers
USCIS announced that the suspension of premium processing service for religious worker (R-1) nonimmigrant visa petitions will continue at least until January 7, 2009.


Classifieds

Help Wanted: Immigration Attorney
New York, NY - Pollack, Pollack, Isaac & DeCicco, LLP., a small downtown firm seeks experienced immigration attorney in litigation and/or corporate immigration law. E-mail resume, and salary requirements to legal administrator at gmhewitt@ppid.com.

Help Wanted: Immigration Paralegal
New York, NY - Klasko, Rulon, Stock & Seltzer, LLP, a nationally-known immigration law firm, has an opening for an experienced immigration paralegal. This position will handle employment-based immigration matters for universities, hospitals, research organizations and corporations. Our firm provides paralegals with a collegial atmosphere with high professional standards. Excellent academic credentials at a minimum of a Bachelor's degree level; strong verbal, written and organizational skills; and computer literacy required for this position. Successful paralegal candidates should have at least 3 years of employment-based immigration experience. Fax resume and salary history/requirements to (215)-825-8699 or E-mail: hrpa@klaskolaw.com.

Help Wanted: Immigration Paralegals
Reston, VA - Law Offices of Rakesh Mehrotra has immediate openings for senior and junior immigration paralegals/adminitrative assistants for busy Immigration practice. Candidates must have experience in business immigration law, including preparation of H-1B, L-1, TN, O-1 and E-1/E-2 visa petitions and labor certification cases. Responsibilities include the preparation and filing of business and employment-related immigration documentation. Senior paralegals will supervise and mentor junior paralegals. Qualified candidates must have excellent organizational skills, attention to detail, accuracy and consistency. Excellent written and oral communication skills and bachelor's degree required. Junior paralegal position requires 2+ years of experience and Senior paralegal position requires 5+ years of experience. Competitive salary and benefits offered. Very congenial work environment with opportunity for professional growth. Send cover letter, resume and salary requirements to jobs@immigrationonline.com.

Position Sought
Experienced immigration specialist/paralegal seeks immigration contract work for law firms on a telecommute basis. Possess 10+ years experience in law firm environment and corporate environment managing the immigration department with primary responsibility for all phases of immigration processing and administration. Provides a wide range of immigration support services to immigration attorneys including, but not limited to: preparation of all IV and NIV documents and support letters (B, H, E, L, TN, O, P, PERM and PR), article and newsletter drafting, onsite I-9 and Public Access File auditing services to arrange corporate compliance with labor and immigration regulations, and coordinating visa applications requiring host-country filings. Resume, writing sample, and references available upon request. Email: imm.specialist@gmail.com.

Help Wanted: Immigration Attorney
Salt Lake City, UT - Alcala Immigration Law Firm seeks an immigration attorney. Two years experience in immigration law preferred. Candidate must possess strong writing, analytical, organizational, and case management skills. Applicant must be fluent in Spanish. We offer an excellent compensation and benefits package. Please e-mail cover letter, resume, references, writing sample, and salary history to: james@VisasUSA.com.

Help Wanted: Immigration Professional
Washington, DC - Maggio & Kattar, P.C. , a fast-paced nationally recognized immigration law firm, seeks highly motivated, detail-oriented receptionist. Excellent interpersonal skills and computer literacy required. Great opportunity for individual interested in working with international clientele and/or legal field; career advancement possibilities. Salary range: $27,000-$31,000. Competitive benefits. Please email resume to: jobs@maggio-kattar.com or fax (202) 483-6801, Attn: Amal Talhame. No calls please.

Help Wanted: Immigration Paralegal
Knoxville, TN - Kramer Rayson LLP seeks an immigration paralegal with experience in the immigration field. Job responsibilities include the preparation and filing of business and employment-related immigration documentation and communications with government agencies and clients. Qualified candidates must have excellent writing, technical, communication and organizational skills with an attention to detail. BA or MA preferred. Please e-mail your confidential resume with your specific experience, salary requirements and writing sample to Marc Upchurch, Executive Director at mupchurch@kramer-rayson.com or fax number (865) 522-5723.

Help Wanted: Immigration Paralegal
Dallas, TX - Law Offices of Richard A. Gump, Jr. P.C., an immigration law firm located in the Galleria area, seeks a full time immigration paralegal. Ideal candidate has a BA degree and a minimum of three years experience preparing employment-based and family-based cases. Please fax resume to: 972-386-9547 or email to: rickgump@rickgump.com.

Help Wanted: Immigration Paralegals
Ridgewood, NJ - Nachman & Associates, PC seeks Senior Immigration Paralegals and a U.S. Office Manager. For the Senior Immigration Paralegal position qualified candidates must have 3+ years of heavy business immigration experience. Senior Paralegal position requires direct client contact, strong communication skills, detail orientation, organizational skills, ability to meet deadlines, interpersonal skills, team-mindedness, customer service skills, PC skills, multi-tasking, and work under pressure. The U.S. Office Manager position will manage the paralegal staff and be responsible for running the U.S. offices. Candidate must possess 2+ yrs of management experience in a law firm and handle: employee orientation, vendors, compliance with firm policies, employee relations, organizing team meetings, and management of work flow and assignments, preparation of engagement letters, A/R and A/P, respond to clients, manage calendar of events. BA preferred. E-mail resume and salary requirement to david_nachman@visaserve.com specifying position in subject line. EOE.

Credential Evaluation And Translation
As the nation's leader in foreign credential evaluations and translations, American Evaluation and Translation Service, Inc. (AETS) provides the most competitive rates in the industry – $50 educational evaluations, as well as $200 'expert opinion' work experience and position evaluations completed by PhD university professors who have the "authority to grant college level credit for work experience and/or training." AETS offers a variety of turn-around times, including same-day service for educational, work experience, and position evaluations. For list of rates and times, see: http://aetsinternational.com/applicationforevaluationservices.pdf. AETS also provides certified translations in 100+ languages, with translators that are specialists in 80+ fields. For a copy of the Application for Credential Evaluation and Translation Services, please contact AETS at (786) 276-8190, visit http://www.aetsinternational.com, or email: info@aetsinternational.com.

Website Services
Gain the competitive edge with your new website from INSZoom, the world's largest immigration software company. Choose from a range of template websites, complete with customized logos and images, 60-70 pps. of professionally written immigration law content including news articles, processing dates, and priority times posted directly on your site. Our search engine optimization tools will increase your web traffic and prioritize your site in the major search engines. Our content management tool lets you update your site in real time. Customized intake sheets let you integrate your case management software directly into your site. Biweekly newsletters and email blast tools enable you to stay in constant touch with current clients and strengthen your potential client base. Build leads and maintain a professional presence at a reasonable cost with websites from INSZoom. Learn more online at www.inszoom.com/websites or contact a sales representative at (925) 244-0600 to start the process of launching your new website today.


Headlines

Law Students Rush To Meet Needs In Booming Field Of Immigration
A subject that three decades ago was a secondary, technical field delegated to adjunct professors is booming at law schools nationwide.

Immigration Comes To Fore For McCain, Obama
After months of treading softly on immigration, Barack Obama put the issue center stage Tuesday when he accused John McCain of setting aside years of support for a guest-worker program to appease conservatives and further his presidential ambition.


comingsNgoings

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

New Paralegal
Fiorella Granda has joined Valentini Law Offices, PLLC as a legal assistant. She recently graduated from CUNY at Lehman College. Valentini Law Offices, PLLC; 61 Broadway, Suite 2505, New York, NY 10006; Tel: 212-213-8275


Letters

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

Dear Editor:
I am concerned about the millions of undocumented immigrants who are living in the shadows of our society, but I am more concerned about the plight of the LPRs and citizens who have unconscionably long waits to bring family members into the US (07/09/08 ID Comment). I feel the same way about the LPR and citizen families that are destroyed by the retroactive removal grounds and the other Draconian measures of IIRIRA. I don’t think it makes sense to say that an immigration reform bill is comprehensive if it doesn’t fix the IIRIRA problems.

Nolan Rappaport

Dear Editor:
This (07/09/08 ID Comment) has been going on for over many decades except that since 9/11 it has gotten worse. Some of the spouses and children are retain because the priority date may regress to an ungodly date that immigration did not have this kind of sequence. Let say the priority date came on the month of May 2008 to July 1, 2000; however the month of June 2000 the priority date may regress to June 20 1989. It is unreal how this priority date can dance of the tune of two steps forward and three steps backward. There is only a wait until immigration will forward the priority date to where it was on May 2000 and this could take months or perhaps a year and half. Why? No one knows the answer. Yes, immigrants are really in purgatory.

Gladys C. Farris


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 1995- American Immigration LLC, ILW.COM. Send correspondence and articles to editor@ilw.com. 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


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