On October 19, 2023, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced Israel’s immediate eligibility for the Visa Waiver Program. This follows DHS’ September 27th designation, announcing a November 30, 2023 start date, which has apparently been accelerated. Israelis may now apply for the Visa Waiver Program online through Customs and Border Protection.
The UK Home Office has announced that, with effect from 4 October 2023, there will be an increase in application fees for a number of UK immigration and nationality routes. The headline increases are:
On December 23, 2021, the Department of State announced that consular officers are now authorized to waive the in-person interview requirement for certain temporary work visa applicants who have petitions approved by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This authorization will expire on December 31, 2022. Interviews may be waived for temporary workers applying for the following visa types: H-1, H-3, H-4, L, O, P, and Q. As the authorization requires a USCIS-approved petition, it does not appear to apply to individual visa applications submitted pursuant to approved “L” blankets. In order to qualify, an applicant must meet the following requirements:
Continue Reading State Department Will Waive Interviews for Many Temporary Work Visa Applicants
On May 31, 2019, the US Department of State (“DOS” or “Department”) updated its visa application forms to require persons seeking US visas to disclose their social media identifiers. The DOS defines “identifier” to include any name used on a social media platform like Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. The Department’s FAQs state that the information…
In light of recent news regarding data breaches affecting Facebook users, data-mining apps are not the only entities monitoring social media use these days.
Last fall, the Department of Homeland Security expanded its digital monitoring policy in the Federal Register to include immigrant “social media handles, aliases, associated identifiable information, and search results”. While DHS describes the announcement as a policy clarification rather than a policy change, the news escalates the debate concerning government use of social media and the tension between privacy rights, free speech, and public safety. Concurrently, DHS issued broader access to public-source data in concert with the intelligence community. Whereas these 2017 adoptions indicate recent change, DHS has instituted new practices in the digital domain over the last two decades. For instance, the Department began to evaluate social media more closely in the aftermath of the 2015 San Bernardino mass shooting by two attackers who had exchanged private online messages, and added optional requests for social media use under the Visa Waiver Program in late 2016.Continue Reading 5 Ways Your Social Media Use Might Impact Your Immigration Journey