Chugh, LLP’s Immigration Practice Group has extensive experience in all areas of Immigration. We specialize in United States Business Immigration and represent small businesses, Fortune 500 companies and some of the largest Indian companies doing business in the U.S. In 2006, our Immigration Practice Group processed roughly 6% of the annual H-1B quota.

Our Immigration Practice Group is highly experienced in securing temporary (non-immigrant) visas and Permanent Residence (green card) for our clients. Our Immigration attorneys and professional staff have a thorough understanding of the federal regulations and the Immigration and Nationality Act. In addition, our staff is experienced in dealing with Government agencies such as the USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) and the U.S. Department of Labor (U.S. DOL). We regularly advise our corporate clients on issues such as: intra-company transfers, I-9 compliance issues, and employer sanctions.

The members of Chugh, LLP Immigration Practice Group have over 100 years of combined experience in the field of immigration. Our members have worked in the immigration divisions of the U.S. government, such as the UCSIS and in the Executive Office of Immigration Review with the U.S. Department of Justice. Many of our members are immigrants themselves, so they understand the specific needs and concerns of our clients.

With offices across the United States and in India, our clients have access to us whenever they have an immigration question or issue. Our offices are in constant touch with our clients to ensure that our services are uniform and consistent, no matter which location our clients visit. We can achieve this level of consistency through the use of state of the art technology. This technology helps us provide our clients with high quality services in a time-efficient manner, even while handling a high volume of immigration cases. As a result, in 2006, Chugh, LLP was named one of Silicon India’s’ top 100 technology companies. In addition to representing Corporation’s, Chugh, LLP also represents individuals to obtain visas and Green Cards through various avenues available and as provided by the Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice.

If you have questions about obtaining a green card, work permit, a visa, asylum, naturalization or citizenship, please call one of our branch offices for immediate assistance with your immigration law matter. Our multi-lingual staff is ready to guide you through the complicated immigration process.

I reside in the United Stated on an H-1B visa. Can I open a business?

H-1B is a special temporary visa that allows foreign workers to work in the United States for up to six years. This can be used by both individuals and companies who want to temporarily hire foreign workers. An H-1B is a non-immigrant visa that requires sponsorship by an employer or association of employers to whom the alien is authorized to accept reinstatement of work and then initiation of a lawful stay in the United States. Since a requirement of the H-1B visa is a relationship with an employer, individuals cannot use an H-1B visa to open and run their own business.

I have an H-1B, can I use an AP? If so, do I lose my H-1B?

Yes, you can use an Advanced Professional (AP) with your H-1B visa. After your first H-1B petition is approved and you have been granted H-1B status, you will not be required to file another petition to convert your H-1B into an A status.  Assuming the petitioner also files an AP certification. You should keep in mind that the employment conditions that apply to the foreign national seeking A status differ from those that apply to the foreign national applying for original petition approval.

I filed an I-485 EB3 downgrade. Can I file I-485 Interfiling to EB2?  Or if EB3 is faster, can I interfile back to EB3 without filing another I-485?

If you have filed for and received an EB2, you can file I-485 Interfiling with USCIS and have it considered as an alternate filing date for the EB3, or other priority dates being filed after your EB2. This will allow you to file for an immediate priority date, thus allowing you to interfile back to EB3. This time will also be counted against the three year period of 180 days required by USCIS before multiple concurrent petitions are allowed.

I want to enter the United States on a L-1A visa, what are the requirements?

To enter the U.S on a L-1A, there are a series of requirements and documents that must  be submitted to US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The first thing that you will need to do is file an extension to your green card. Though this extension creates more processing time for the petition, it is highly recommended because this is how USCIS determines whether your employing organization or base will accept you. Otherwise, you would need to wait for approval from USCIS before you can file the petition with US Immigration Attorney.

I used my H-1B visa for 2 years. Can I file a cap exempt H-1B now or do I have to file under the lottery?

If you have used your H-1B visa for two years, you may be eligible to file a cap-exempt H-1B petition. This means that your petition would not be subject to the H-1B visa lottery. To be eligible for this exemption, you must work for a non-profit organization, research institution, or government entity. You must also show that your work is in the public interest. Individuals who meet the requirements can file a petition with USCIS using Form I-129.

Can I work for more than one employer while on an H-1B visa?

Yes, you can work for more than one employer on an H-1B visa. However, each employer must submit a separate petition for you. You will also need to have a valid work visa for each employer. You can only work in the occupation listed on your visa, Therefore, if you want to change employers, you will need to get a new visa.

Can I work while my EAD extension is pending?

It is possible to work while your EAD extension is pending, but there are a few things to keep in mind. First, your employer must be willing to sponsor you for the extension. Second, you will need to have all of the necessary documentation before you can start working. Finally, you should check with an immigration professional to make sure that working while your EAD extension is pending will not put your status in jeopardy.

Can I obtain my H-1B visa stamping in any country?

Yes, you can obtain your H-1B visa stamping in any country as long as that country has a U.S. consulate or embassy. However, it is important to note that some countries may have longer wait times for visa appointments than others. Therefore, it is always best to check the wait times for visa appointments at the U.S. consulate or embassy in the country that you plan to travel to before making your travel plans.

Can I transfer to another employer if I filed an I-485 Interfiling through previous employer?

If you have filed an I-485 Interfiling through a previous employer, you may be able to port to another employer. You will need to meet the requirements for portability, which include having a new job offer from the new employer that is in the same or similar occupational category as your previous job. You will also need to show that you remain eligible for adjustment of status. If you meet these requirements, you can contact USCIS and request your case be transferred to your new employer.

Can I file an I-485 with a different employer who filed my PERM?

If you have been working for an employer who filed your Permanent Labor Certification (PERM) and you would like to switch to a different employer, you may do so by filing an I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status with the new employer. The new employer must be willing to sponsor your green card. Additionally, you will need to provide evidence that you have maintained continuous lawful status since entering the United States and that you are eligible for the new job. If the I-485 Application is approved, you will be issued a green card and will be able to work for the new employer.

What is the impact of corporate structure changes (mergers, acquisitions, etc.) on H-1B, L-1s, PERMs, and green card processing.

Corporate structure changes, such as mergers and acquisitions, can have a significant impact on the H-1B, L-1, PERM, and green card processing. These changes can cause delays and disruptions in the process, and may require businesses to submit new or revised petitions. In some cases, businesses may need to obtain new labor certifications or file new PERM applications. Employers currently undertaking a structure change should consult an immigration professional to discuss case-specific next steps.

What happens during a USCIS site visit?

When the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) arrives for a site visit at a business, they are there to confirm that the business is legitimate and operating as described in their application. The USCIS officer will interview the business owner and employees, review company documents, and observe the workplace. They may also talk to customers or vendors to get more information about the business. The goal of the site visit is to ensure that businesses are complying with immigration laws and not engaging in fraud or other illegal activity.

How does a business stay in compliance with LCA posting requirements?

As a business, it is important to ensure compliance with the Labor Condition Application (LCA) posting requirements. The LCA is used to determine whether the working conditions of an H-1B visa holder are similar to those of U.S. workers in the same occupation. To meet this requirement, businesses must post the LCA in two conspicuous places at their worksite for a period of ten consecutive business days. Additionally, businesses must provide notice to their employees about the LCA posting by either distributing a physical copy or electronically through email or an intranet site. Failing to comply with these requirements can result in penalties, such as fines or debarment from participation in the H-1B program. Therefore, it is crucial that businesses take the necessary steps to ensure compliance with the LCA posting requirements.

How do you fill out Form I-9 for remote employees?

If you have remote employees, you will need to fill out Form I-9 for each one. This form is used to verify the identity and authorize the employment of your employees.  Employers must take the following steps for each employee:

  • Go to the USCIS website and download a copy of Form I-9.
  • Fill out Section 1 with the employee's personal information.
  • In Section 2, select the documents that the employee will use to prove their identity and employment authorization.
  • The employee must sign and date the completed form in Section 3.
  • The employer, must also sign and date the form in Section 3.
  • Keep the form on file for at least three years after the employee's start date or one year after their date of termination, whichever is longer.

Step-by-step guide to PERM process.

  • The PERM process is the first step in obtaining a green card through employment. This process can be complex, so it's important to understand each step.  In simple terms:
  • File a Labor Certification Application (LCA) with the Department of Labor (DOL). The LCA is used to certify that there are no qualified U.S. workers available to fill the position and that the foreign worker will not adversely affect wages or working conditions of U.S. workers.
  • Once the LCA is approved, the employer must file an Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker with the USCIS. The petition must include evidence that the foreign worker meets all requirements for the position, including any required licenses or certification.
  • After the petition is approved, the foreign worker must apply for a visa at a U.S. consulate or embassy.
  • The final step in the process is for the foreign worker must enter the United States and begin work in the new job.

When is an H-1B amendment required?

There are a few instances when an H-1B amendment may be required. If the employee is changing job duties, employers must file an amended petition with USCIS. An amended petition is also necessary if the employee is going to work at a new worksite - even if the job duties remain the same. In this instance, the employer would need to submit a Labor Condition Application (LCA) to USCIS along with the amended petition.

How do you determine DOL prevailing wage levels for LCA and PERMs?

The Department of Labor (DOL) is responsible for setting the prevailing wages for all occupations in the United States. There are two ways to determine the prevailing wage for a position: the Labor Condition Application (LCA) and the Permanent Employment Certification (PERM).
The LCA is used for positions that are temporary or seasonal in nature, while the PERM is used for positions that are permanent. To determine the prevailing wage for a position using the LCA, businesses must submit a request to the DOL.
The DOL will then provide a list of wages for similar positions in the area where the business is located. Businesses must then choose the median wage from this list.

To determine the prevailing wage for a position using the PERM, businesses must first complete a survey of wages paid to workers in similar positions in their area. They must then submit this survey to the DOL along with their application for permanent employment certification. The DOL will review the survey and set the prevailing wage based on its findings.

Can I travel outside the US while I-539 and I-765 applications are pending?

If you plan to travel outside the United States while your I-539 and I-765 applications are pending, there are a few things you should keep in mind. First, if you leave the country while your applications are pending, your applications will be considered abandoned and will be automatically denied. Additionally, if you have an interview scheduled with USCIS but choose to leave the country before the interview takes place, your interview will be cancelled and you will need to reschedule it for a later date. Finally, if you receive a Request for Evidence (RFE) from USCIS while you are outside the country, you may not be able to respond to the RFE in a timely manner, which could delay the processing of your applications. Therefore, if at all possible, it is best to remain in the United States while your I-539 and I-765 applications are pending.

What are employers’ obligations under an H-1B petition?

As an employer, you have certain obligations when petitioning for an H-1B visa on behalf of your employees.
Firstly, you must ensure that the position being offered is a legitimate specialty occupation. This means that the position requires the theoretical and practical application of a body of highly specialized knowledge, and that the employee has the necessary qualifications to perform the job and that it is essential to your business.
You will also need to show that you are paying the prevailing wage for the position, and that you have the ability to pay any required fees associated with the H-1B petition process.
Finally, you must provide evidence that your business has not been adversely affected by a strike or lockout within the past year. All of these requirements must be met in order for your H-1B petition to be approved, work closely with a trusted immigration attorney to ensure your petitions are properly filed.

What are the requirements for an O-1 visa?

To obtain an O-1 visa, applicants must demonstrate that they possess extraordinary ability in their field. This includes showing that they have received national or international acclaim and recognition for their achievements, and that their work has a significant impact on their field. To meet these requirements, applicants must typically submit documentation such as media coverage, awards and accolades, reference letters from experts in their field, and copies of any professional licenses or certifications they may hold. Those who are self-employed may also need to provide financial documentation demonstrating their income and ability to support themselves while in the United States.

I was terminated from my H-1B employment. How long do I have to find another employer to transfer my H-1B to?

The answer to this question depends on a few factors, including the reason for your termination and whether or not you have been granted an extension of stay. If you were terminated due to reasons beyond your control, such as a layoff or downsizing, you may be eligible for a 60-day grace period during which you can find another employer to transfer your H-1B to.
If your termination was due to misconduct, you will not be eligible for a grace period and will need to leave the country immediately.
If you have been granted an extension of stay, you will be allowed to remain in the United States for up to six months after your date of termination. This should give you plenty of time to find another employer who is willing to transfer your H-1B.
Regardless of the reason for your termination, it is important to act quickly if you want to maintain your status in the United States. Once your employment has ended, you will no longer be authorized to work in the country unless you have obtained a new visa. Therefore, it is in your best interest to find a new position and transfer your H-1B petition as soon as possible.

I was terminated from my H-1B employment. What are some options I have to remain in the US?

If you have been terminated from your H-1B employment, there are a few options that can be explored to remain in the United States. One option is to seek out another employer who is willing to sponsor your H-1B visa.
Another option is to apply for a different visa that would allow you to stay in the US, such as an F-1 student visa.
You could also try to obtain a green card through employment-based immigration. However, this process can be lengthy and difficult. Ultimately, it is best to consult with an experienced immigration attorney to discuss your specific situation and what options may be available to you.

I have an earlier I-140 petition approved with a previous employer. Why do I have to restart a PERM labor certification with my current employer?

If you have an approved I-140 petition from a previous employer, you may be able to use that petition to obtain an immigrant visa or adjustment of status with your current employer. However, you will need to restart the PERM labor certification process. This is because the PERM labor certification is specific to a particular employer and position.
Therefore, even if you have an approved I-140 petition from a previous employer, you will still need to go through the PERM labor certification process with your current employer in order to obtain an immigrant visa or adjustment of status.

I am maxing out on my H-1B in a couple of years. What options do I have to ensure that I can remain in the US?

If you are maxing out on your H-1B in a couple of years, you have a few options to ensure that you can remain in the United States.
One option is to find an employer who is willing to sponsor you for a green card. This process can take a few years, but it will allow you to stay in the US indefinitely.
Another option is to apply for an H-1B visa extension. This can be done every three years and will allow you to stay in the US for an additional three years.
Finally, you could also consider applying for a different type of visa, such as an E-2 or L-1 visa. These visas have different requirements and restrictions, so be sure to research them thoroughly and discuss all options with an attorney before applying.

I have been waiting for my priority date to be ‘Current’ for years. What can I do to expedite the GC process and secure my US permanent residency?

If you've been waiting for your priority date to become current for years, there are a few things you can do to expedite the process and secure your permanent residency. One option is to ask your employer to file a labor certification application on your behalf. This will help demonstrate to the US Department of Labor that there is a shortage of qualified workers in your occupation, and that your employer is willing to sponsor you for a green card.
Another option is to pursue an employment-based immigrant visa through one of the many programs available. These programs typically require that you have an offer of full-time employment from a US employer, but they can be a faster way to obtain a green card than going through the labor certification process. You may also be eligible for certain expedited processing options if you have an advanced degree or exceptional ability in your field. Talk to an experienced immigration attorney to learn more about your options and what you can do to expedite the green card process.



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Immigration Specialist


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