The Truth Behind Immigration and Outsourcing: Immigration Keeps Jobs in the U.S. by Timothy Bakken

Immigration helps keep jobs in the U.S. rather than losing them to other countries, especially when it comes to IT jobs, as explained by this Forbes article.  In fact, at many American universities the majority of graduate students in engineering and computer science are international students who hope to work in the U.S. in highly skilled and technical positions. The more high-skilled visa workers that we have here, the less need we have to send work abroad to be performed by high-skilled workers located outside the U.S.  Employment of high-skilled workers in the U.S. strengthens American companies and creates more jobs in the U.S. We should not give in to xenophobia and our laws should welcome and encourage immigration of intelligent, ambitious, educated, highly skilled, and creative individuals from throughout the world.

Timothy R. Bakken

Will DACA Die? Hundreds of Thousands Afraid of Deportation by Timothy Bakken

Young adults who came to the United States as children fear being deported to their home country under the new Presidential administration. Jessica Colotl tells her story of coming to the United States as an 11-year-old with her undocumented family and the challenges she has faced as a result. The futures of over 750,000 DACA recipients like Jessica are more uncertain than ever. To read the full story from Politico, click here

Timothy R. Bakken

Students, tourists, and other travelers beware! New visa vetting rules could result in delays. by Torgrim Landsverk

Despite objections from privacy experts and academic and scientific communities in the U.S., the Trump administration has approved new rules that will allow State Department officers to request visa applicants’ last five years of social media handles, email addresses, and phone numbers, and the last fifteen years of residential, employment, and travel history. See full Reuters story here, click. 

These new rules will give even more discretion to visa officers than they already have.  Get ready for longer processing times at U.S. Consulates and an increase in visa denials, many of which will be based on innocent mistakes by applicants. Allegedly, the requests for additional information will be “voluntary”, though applicants who refuse to voluntarily provide the requested information may find their visa applications delayed or even denied. Stay tuned….

Timothy R. Bakken

Bakken Law congratulates client Taylor Pardell on recent O-1 approval by Torgrim Landsverk

O-1s are a category of nonimmigrant visas available to individuals with extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, business, athletics, or arts.

Taylor Pardell is an extremely talented soprano, actor, performer, and music teacher. In fittingly dramatic style, Taylor received the approval of her O-1 visa just two hours before an important audition in New York City!

We know Taylor has a bright future before her, and we can’t wait to see what she will accomplish next.



USCIS Reaches FY 2015 H-1B Cap by Timothy Bakken

USCIS: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that it has received a sufficient number of H-1B petitions to reach the statutory cap for fiscal year (FY) 2015.  USCIS has also received more than the limit of 20,000 H-1B petitions filed under the U. S. advanced degree exemption.   

Before running a random selection process, USCIS will complete initial intake for all filings received during the filing period which ended today. Due to the high number of petitions, USCIS is not yet able to announce the date on which it will conduct the random selection process.

A computer-generated process will randomly select the number of petitions needed to meet the caps of 65,000 visas for the general category and 20,000 under the advanced degree exemption. USCIS will reject and return filing fees for all cap-subject petitions that are not selected, unless found to be a duplicate filing. 

The agency will conduct the selection process for the advanced degree exemption first. All advanced degree petitions not selected will become part of the random selection process for the 65,000 limit.

USCIS will continue to accept and process petitions that are otherwise exempt from the cap. Petitions filed on behalf of current H-1B workers who have been counted previously against the cap will not be counted towards the congressionally mandated FY 2015 H-1B cap. USCIS will continue to accept and process petitions filed to:

  • Extend the amount of time a current H-1B worker may remain in the United States;
  • Change the terms of employment for current H-1B workers;
  • Allow current H-1B workers to change employers; and
  • Allow current H-1B workers to work concurrently in a second H-1B position.

U.S. businesses use the H-1B program to employ foreign workers in occupations that require highly specialized knowledge in fields such as science, engineering and computer programming.

By USCIS, 7. April 2014.

Immigration lottery limits U.S. employers.
The H-1B programs impact on wages jobs and the economy.
Tech flips the script on immigration foes.
How immigration reform - or lack thereof - is hurting our economic competitiveness.

Department of State simplifies filing process for Mexican TN professionals by Timothy Bakken


DENVER: In a welcome change, the Department of State will no longer require prior petition approval from CIS for Mexicans applying for professional TN visas under NAFTA.  Mexicans applying for TN visas will now be able to apply directly at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy and following visa issuance apply at a land port-of-entry or airport preflight inspection for admission to the U.S. For more information check this link from the Department of State.

Timothy R. Bakken