October 2023 U.S. Immigration Updates: Key Highlights You Need to Know

Welcome to our October 2023 U.S. Immigration Update. It continues to be our pleasure to provide you with the latest updates on U.S. and Canadian immigration and nationality laws. Please feel free to share this information with a friend, family member, or colleague. Over the past month, there have been significant developments in immigration policies. In this blog post, we’ve summarized the key points for your convenience.

Government Shutdown Avoided: Congress approved a temporary Bill to keep the government operational for 45 days. Details on immigration consequences in the event of a shutdown can be found in our recently posted immigration law alert.

USCIS Fee Exemption: As of October 1, the $85 biometric services fee for the Form I-539 (Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status) is waived.

EAD Validity Extended: USCIS has extended the validity periods of certain Employment Authorization Documents, increasing them to a maximum of 5 years for specific categories.

End of the 540-Day Rule: The Temporary Final Rule granting a 540-day automatic extension for some EAD renewals will end on October 26. After this, only a 180-day extension will be granted.

Visa Waiver Program for Israel: From November 30, Israel will be included in the Visa Waiver Program, allowing eligible nationals to travel to the U.S. for short stays without a nonimmigrant visa.

Electronic Signatures on SEVP Forms: The Student and Exchange Visitor Program has removed the wet signature requirement on the Form I-983, now accepting both physical and electronic signatures.

DACA Program Ruled Unlawful: A U.S. District Court found the DACA Final Rule unlawful. While renewals will continue, initial applications will only be accepted but not processed.

Venezuela’s Temporary Protected Status: The U.S. has extended and redesigned Venezuela’s TPS for 18 months, with certain eligibility criteria.

Please feel free to contact the US and Canadian immigration lawyers at the NPZ Law Group by e-mailing us at info@visaserve.com or by calling us at 201-670-0006 (extensions 104 or d204). At VISASERVE – NPZ Law Group – our US and Canadian immigration and nationality lawyers are eager to assist you, your friends, colleagues, and family members with any complex immigration and nationality law matters. We pride ourselves on providing rapid and personalized service to our clients.