A group of 14 Indian and Chinese immigrants has filed a lawsuit against U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the U.S. State Department for rescinding on plans that would have allowed them to file for green cards in October. The government’s sudden revision impacts thousands of foreign nationals living in California and nationwide.
On Sept. 9, the government announced it would allow many highly skilled immigrants, many of whom are from India, China and the Philippines, to file Adjustment of Status applications with USCIS beginning on Oct. 1. The move was expected to clear a huge backlog of paperwork from the government’s system and help streamline the green card application process. However, just five days before foreign nationals were to file their applications, the Department of State inexplicably issued a bulletin that revised the plan.
The lawsuit, which seeks class-action status, claims the government’s decision violated the foreign nationals’ due process rights and runs counter to the Administrative Procedure Act. Many of the immigrants paid thousands of dollars in required legal and medical fees in preparation for filing their applications. The suit may attempt to have those fees reimbursed.
Employers with foreign workers who were eligible to file their Adjustment of Status applications on Oct. 1 under the terms of the first State Department bulletin must now review the revised bulletin to determine if the employees are still eligible. Any applications received by USCIS that do not meet the new priority dates will be rejected.
The application process for employment visas can be complex and protracted. A foreign national facing these or other employment immigration issues may benefit from obtaining the assistance of an attorney.