The U.S. Department of State (DOS) recently extended the allowable duration for Japanese language and culture specialists under the J-1 visa classification from one year to three years. The initiative aims to enhance cultural exchanges and strengthen educational ties between Japan and the United States.[1]Continue Reading A Longer Welcome: US Extends Stay for Japanese Specialists to Three Years

On April 1, 2024, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) implemented new costs for many common immigration filings, resulting in a fee increase of 100% to 200% for certain visa categories including those utilized by US employers. In this Legal Update, we examine some of these new fees, the impact of the fee increase on

New Immigration Rules came into force in the UK on 4 April 2024 which affect employers who sponsor workers under the Skilled worker or Global Business Mobility: Senior or Specialist Worker routes. Continue Reading Raising The Bar: New UK Immigration Rules Increase Salary Thresholds For Sponsored Workers

The US Supreme Court has declined to consider a lawsuit that sought to eliminate a work authorization program widely utilized by foreign graduates of US universities. The Supreme Court’s denial of a writ of certiorari ensures that foreign graduates may continue working through the Department of Homeland Security’s Optional Practical Training (OPT) program, eliminating a

In a significant move aimed at streamlining and providing additional flexibilities to the employment verification process, the Department of Homeland Security announced a final rule granting certain employers the authority to utilize an optional alternative when examining Form I-9 documentation. The announcement follows the agency’s proposed rulemaking in August 2022 designed to explore alternative means

On June 23, 2023, the Italian government announced that foreign workers would be permitted to begin working in Italy while they wait to sign a contratto di soggiorno (contract of stay) at the immigration office. The change is part of a package of reforms intended to enable qualified foreign workers to begin employment in Italy in a more rapid fashion. While the foreign worker is still eventually required to sign the contract of stay, they no longer have to wait to do so before beginning formal employment.  Continue Reading Italy Loosens Post-Arrival Requirements for Foreign Workers

On June 27, 2023, the Canadian government announced a new “Tech Talent Strategy” aimed at increasing the country’s attractiveness to global talent. Central to the government’s strategy is a program that offers three-year open work permits to foreign nationals who hold H-1B specialty occupation visas in the United States. Spouses of US H-1B visa holders would also be eligible for work authorization in Canada, and children would be eligible for study permits. The Tech Talent Strategy also includes provisions that promote Canada as a destination for digital nomads, improve the allocation of visas to startup companies, and streamline work permit processes. The open work permit program for H-1B visa holders is set to go into effect on July 16, 2023.Continue Reading Canada Offers Open Work Permits to US H-1B Visa Holders as Part of “Tech Talent Strategy”

The Polish government has reportedly begun relaxing work permit requirements for certain individuals working remotely in the country for foreign employers. The policy change has been announced in agency guidance issued by the Ministry of Family and Social Policy, which exercises responsibility over the Polish labor market. The move is a departure from the government’s previous policy requiring nearly all gainfully employed foreign workers located in Polish territory to obtain a work permit – even if their physical location was incidental to their work. Poland’s relaxation of work permit rules for remote workers comes as several other countries – including Spain, Italy, Romania, Iceland, and the United Arab Emirates – have introduced remote worker (or “Digital Nomad”) visas to attract an increasingly mobile class of global talent.  Continue Reading Poland Relaxes Work Authorization Rules for Remote Workers

Effective September 1, 2023, the government of Singapore will require companies sponsoring foreign nationals for new Employment Passes (EPs) to verify the individual’s academic credentials. This policy will also apply to renewal applications as of September 1, 2024. Previously, verification of academic credentials was only required at government request and for select countries and institutions. Singapore’s announcement is intended to prevent fraudulent submissions and ensure the authenticity of visa applicants’ qualifications.Continue Reading Singapore Adopts Education Verification Requirement