US Immigration Lawyer

Numerous Recent Visa Approvals for D&A Clients

The clients of our firm have been granted a number of different visa approvals over the past week, with the feeling that the Covid pandemic is increasingly behind us. Here are some examples:

E2 Visa for Singapore National Setting Up Advisory Firm in California

We are happy to share that we have secured an approval for another E2 Treaty Investor Visa applicant from Singapore. The applicant will operate as an advisory firm in California. The Company will raise money from qualified investors who will acquire limited partnership interests in a limited partnership fund, and then advise the fund to make minority equity investments in selected startups. The Company will receive advisory fees from the fund and a profit in the form of carried interest when the equity held by the fund in a startup is acquired by an acquirer, or when the startup goes for an initial public offering. 

The E2 company will be committed to partnering with frontier tech entrepreneurs as they start out, becoming their trusted advisor and providing them with the necessary advice to succeed. The Company’s investment philosophy will be to patiently identify and invest in highly-qualified entrepreneurs and accelerate growth through its network of executives in the IT Industry. It will coach frontier tech startups on initial customer selection and how to create compelling marketing pitches. The Company will facilitate meetings with lighthouse customers to help startups achieve success fast. Lighthouse customers are consumers who embrace a product soon after its launch. They will provide considerable and critical feedback to help startups develop and refine their products. Identifying and developing strong relationships with these customers is crucial for startups’ future success.

E2 Treaty Investor Visa for a Swiss National

The E2 Treaty Investor invested in a farm management company based in California. The company will provide custom harvesting and farm management services. The Company purchased selected farming equipment to provide local farmers with harvesting services that will maximize their output and profitability. Additionally, the company will hire agricultural advisory who will help farmers select crops for planting and organize their entire annual cycles to increase their operations’ cost-effectiveness. 

The company will provide its services to farmers from Fresno, Woodland, and Lodi, Californian cities known for their disproportionately high agricultural output and excellent products. The Company will focus on nut tree farmers, primarily those that cultivate almonds and pistachios. 

L1 Visa Extension for a Polish Shipping and Logistics Executive

We have helped a US company secure an extension of status for its current President on L-1A visa. Established on January 8, 1992, the US company was founded with the purpose of securing proper representation of a state-owned shiping company in Poland in North America and to conduct business in the lucrative North American market.  The US Company represents the Polish company’s  interests in all aspects and matters concerning North and Central America and the Caribbean markets; providing the closest and most effective link between Poland’s largest ship owner and all current and future business partners and customers.

As General Agent for the PZM Group in North American and Caribbean ports, the US company provides the following services:

  • Serving as financial center (treasury department/cash manager) for various financial transactions involving United States currency
  • Serving in a similar capacity for North American and Caribbean operational activities 
  • Serving as Chartering Broker for the Polish company’s vessels
  • Supervising execution of shipments performed by vessels within North and Central America
  • Arranging port operations through local Agents’ network, dealing with contractors and sub-contractors, including tugs, pilots, stevedores, terminal operations, holds/tanks cleaners, slop disposal services, ship chandlers, etc.
  • Arranging bunkers and spare parts supplies for vessels, including dealing with suppliers and bunker brokers
  • Controlling all costs and expenses regarding ship’s call to North American market
  • Arranging and coordinating crew changes
  • Arranging cargo, ship, draft, bunker, class, technical surveys and all necessary reports

H-1B for an Indian Developer

The US Company was set up in 2016 and it aims to empower enterprises to unleash the power of cloud on their terms by helping them rapidly achieve continuous and autonomous cloud governance at scale. The company enables enterprises to realize outcomes across FinOps, SecOps and CloudOps such as 40% decrease in cloud costs and 50% increase in operational efficiencies by governing operations, security, cost, access, and resources. CoreStack also assures 100%compliance with standards such as ISO, FedRAMP, NIST, HIPAA, PCI-DSS, AWS CIS & Well Architected Framework (WAF).

Enterprises face significant cloud challenges including unpredictable and unabated cloud costs, ever growing security risks, stringent regulatory compliance needs and operational complexities as they navigate the digital transformation journey. The company helps enterprises overcome these challenges by offering deeper cloud visibility, preventative governance

guardrails, and automatic remediation. With a unique Cloud-as-Code approach that uses deep AI/ML, declarative definitions, connector-less model, and a patented cloud service-chaining technology, CoreStack continually innovates to harness the real power of cloud. The company works with many large global customers across multiple industries including Financial Services, Healthcare, Retail, Education, Telecommunications, Technology and Government.

The H-1B beneficiary will assume the position of a Developer who will perform highly specialized duties in the occupation of application development and analysis with a focus on software application design and development and engineering support.

By Verdie Atienza, Head of E2 & L1 Visa Practice Group


EB-5 Regional Center Program faces reauthorization in the US

Biden Reverses Trump-era Policy on Visa Rejection Procedure

Immigration officers can no longer reject visa applications without first issuing a Notice of Intent to Deny

By Tishita Agarwal

In 2018, the Trump administration set a policy that would allow immigration officers to reject visa applications for visas such as the H1-B Visas, L-1 Visas, H-2B, J-1, J-2, I, F and O-1 visas, without issuing a Notice of Intent to Deny. This Trump-era policy invalidated the principle of a June 2013 USCIS memo that required immigration officers to issue a Request For Evidence or a Notice Of Intent to Deny when the case suggests that additional or supplementary evidence could potentially establish eligibility for an immigration benefit. 

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) released a statement that it was returning to the principles of the June 2013 memo. This means the officers will be allowed to request potential missing documents that could qualify a case. Furthermore, this move will not only help requesters get an “opportunity to correct innocent mistakes and unintentional omissions”, but also increase access to the US legal immigration system in general. 

This is not the first time that Biden has overturned immigration policies set by the Trump administration. In fact, right on the first day of his term, President Biden had announced several executive policy changes to the US immigration system, including suspending the construction of the wall at the Mexican border and reaffirming protections for DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals)

Along with changing their guidance towards notice of intent to deny and requests for evidence, the USCIS issued a statement that they are also increasing the validity period for certain Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) from one year to two years. Increasing the validity for these documents will allow the USCIS to shift their limited resources to priority areas, as it is projected to reduce the number of employment authorisation requests they receive. 

These recent decisions are all steps in the direction the Biden-Harris administration promised at the start of their term in an effort to make immigration to the US easier and fairer and eliminate unnecessary barriers on all levels; as put by the Secretary of Homeland security Alejandro N. Mayorkas: “We are taking action to eliminate policies that fail to promote access to the legal immigration system and will continue to make improvements that help individuals navigate the path to citizenship, and that modernise our immigration system”. 

In furtherance to the same, Acting USCIS Director also said “These policy measures are consistent with the Biden-Harris administration’s priorities to eliminate unnecessary barriers to our nation’s legal immigration system and reduce burdens on non-citizens who may be eligible for immigration benefits”.

While this action is in the right direction, the Biden-Harris administration has far to go before the US legal immigration system is not as congested and inefficient as it is currently. 

What is the L-1 Visa?

* The L-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa, which can be used by active US employers or those who wish to establish in the US to send experienced and skilled employees from overseas to the US to grow or expand the business. There are two types of this temporary work visa – the L-1A is for executives and managers, and the L-1B visa is suited for high-level employees with specialised knowledge. 

What is the O-1 Visa?

The O-1 visa on the other hand, requires the applicant to show remarkable skill or high levels of achievement in their field to be able to qualify. This is also a nonimmigrant visa, and is suitable for candidates that possess and demonstrate an extraordinary ability in science, the arts, education, business, athletics, or film & television and a variety of other professions. This means that a candidate must have sustained national or international acclaim in their field, or a distinction or record of extraordinary achievement in film and television. An O-1 beneficiary must possess either a major, internationally recognized award, such as the Nobel Prize; or at least 3 of the alternative criteria.


This article is published for clients, friends and other interested visitors for information purposes only. The contents of the article do not constitute legal advice and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Davies & Associates or any of its attorneys, staff or clients. External links are not an endorsement of the content.


The President’s Immigration Ban: Update

President Trump has signed the Executive Order temporarily suspending some visa categories for an initial 60 days. This mostly applies to people outside the United States seeking permanent residency / Green Cards, excluding the EB-5 program.
The State Department has just issued a clarification stating that the Order is not retroactive and that “no valid visas will be revoked under this proclamation.”
There are a number of exclusions and exemptions. We recommend you contact us to discuss your specific circumstances.

What is NOT included in the ban:

What is also NOT included in the ban, but subject to a 30-day review:

E-3 Australian Professional Specialty Visa

EB-5 Visas Exemption
The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa has been given a special exemption from the ban. EB-5 is a job-creating program. Each EB-5 investment is required to create ten American jobs. The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program is a fast route to a Green Card for families or individuals able to invest $900,000.

Review of Non-Immigrant Visas
The Executive Order only covers immigrants outside the United States seeking permanent residency (Green Cards). Non-immigrant categories, such as the E-2 Visa, the L-1 Visa, and the H-1B Visa are not currently included in the ban.
However, the Executive Order does call for a review of non-immigrant programs within 30 days with a view to “other measures” affecting these categories. The Order instructs the Secretary of Labor, the Secretary of Homeland Security, and the Secretary of State to report recommendations to the President within 30 days regarding restrictions (if any) on non-immigrant visas.

Adjustment of Status
The order only applies to those seeking immigrant visas (i.e. those outside the US seeking to go through consular processing). It does not impact those inside the US already on a valid visa that are eligible to do Adjustment of Status (AOS). Clients should consult us before traveling outside of the United States if they have a pending AOS application or may be eligible to file one in the near future.

Our Advice
We recommend that anyone seeking a US visa proceed with their application. Much can change in the time it takes to prepare one.
With flights grounded and American embassies closed to consular appointments, the Executive Order makes limited material difference in the short term. There are likely to be a number of lawsuits challenging the ban. This is also an election year. A new administration could be expected to reverse this Order.
We will provide updates on the 30-day review of non-immigrant visas. Some non-immigrant categories, such as the E-2 Treaty Investor Visa, bring investment to the United States and create jobs.

Each client’s circumstances are different. Please contact us to discuss how this may affect you.

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