Author Archives: Mitchell C. Zwaik

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About Mitchell C. Zwaik

Mitchell C. Zwaik is an Immigration attorney and partner at Zwaik, Gilbert & Associates in Ronkonkoma, New York.
EMAIL: mczwaik@zwaik.com
BIO: About Mitchell
PHONE: 631-588-4040

The Supreme Court Allows a Limited Portion of the President’s Travel Ban
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
The Supreme Court Allows a Limited Portion of the President’s Travel Ban | Mitchell Zwaik

{2:24 minutes to read} The Supreme Court recently allowed certain parts of the President's travel ban to go into effect. That travel ban had been halted or stayed by lower federal courts that claimed it was discriminatory and unconstitutional. What the Supreme Court has said in effect is that they will deal with that issue in the fall, but over the summer, they are going to let a small part of the travel ban go into effect.

The Court didn't permit the entire executive order to be implemented.

Click here to read Michael Zwaik's full article...

Why is DHS Delaying the Additional H-2B Visas Authorized by Congress?
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .
Why is DHS Delaying the Additional H-2B Visas Authorized by Congress? | Mitchell Zwaik

{2:06 minutes to read} A recent article in the New York Times has highlighted the fact that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has not yet extended, or increased, the number of H-2B visas, despite the fact that Congress authorized an increase. It seems logical that Congress would not have authorized it if they did not intend for DHS to issue these visas.  These visas are for seasonal workers who typically come into the United States for periods of 6, 8, or 10 months in order to work for companies that have a high need for employees during certain periods of time. Here on the east end of Long Island, traffic in the Hamptons explodes during the summertime. If you travel to the Hamptons at this time of year, you will see "Help Wanted" signs everywhere you go.

Click here to read Michael Zwaik's full article...

Winning the H-1B Lottery — Part 2
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .

{3:42 minutes to read} In Part 1 of this series, we covered the basics of the H-1B visa and the lottery used to randomly pick the 85,000 “winners.” In Part 2, we look at some of the controversy surrounding the H-1B.

Unfortunately, there are abuses in the system. These abuses generally focus on a relatively small number of companies that file thousands of visa applications in the hope that a certain number of those will be picked. These businesses are generally computer consulting companies who function largely out of India and provide computer programmers for US employers.

Winning the H-1B Lottery — Part 1
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .
Winning the H-1B Lottery — Part 1 | Mitchell Zwaik

{2:42 minutes to read} The H-1B program provides temporary work visas for professionals, largely in the computer programming field. IT professionals are the largest number of H-1B visas, but all professionals are covered by the H-1B, meaning people who have a bachelor’s degree or better; engineers, architects, et cetera. There are 85,000 visas allotted to the H-1B category, divided into two distinct groups: 65,000 for those with bachelor’s degrees and 20,000 for those with master’s degrees.

The Budget Reconciliation Bill Significantly Increases H-2B Visas
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .
The Budget Reconciliation Bill Significantly Increases H-2B Visas |  Mitchell Zwaik

{2:12 minutes to read} The budget reconciliation bill that was recently passed through Congress has an important immigration provision in it, which allows for significantly increased H-2B visas for this fiscal year.

An H-2B is a visa that allows people to enter the United States legally in order to perform work for seasonal businesses. A perfect example in Long Island is people who work in the restaurants, hotels, motels, pool companies, coffee shops, et cetera on the Eastern End and South Shore of Long Island during the holiday/summer season.

American Immigration Lawyers Association — National Day of Action 2017
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .
American Immigration Lawyers Association — National Day of Action 2017 | Mitchell Zwaik

{4:18 minutes to read} On April 6th, I was in Washington DC as part of a contingent of immigration lawyers from the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). This was our National Day of Action, the purpose of which is to meet with members of the House and the Senate, in order to work with or at least discuss the issues in immigration law that we feel are most important. Attendance this year numbered over 550 members, which is far and away the largest group that's ever appeared for the National Day of Action.

Click here to read Michael Zwaik's full article...

Are You in One of Immigration’s Targeted Groups?
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .
Are You in One of Immigration’s Targeted Groups? | Mitchell Zwaik

{4:54 minutes to read} Among the many “hot topics” surrounding immigration these days, one is about people being rounded up and detained. There is an old cliché: When everybody's a priority, nobody's a priority. There are a lot of people who are priorities, but within that priority system, there are certain people in particular who are being targeted by immigration and need to be careful. People with a Criminal Record

Anybody who has any kind of a criminal record is a target. The Administration talks about deporting drug dealers, gang members, rapists and child molesters, but the people they are picking up are people who have relatively minor offenses, such as DUIs or driving without a license.

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Bar or Ban: The Impact Could Be Devastating
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .
Bar or Ban: The Impact Could Be Devastating | Mitchell Zwaik

Note: Since we created this article there have been numerous developments. Last week, President Trump issued his “reworked” Executive Order effective March 16. This order is substantially the same as the first one. Its legality is being challenged by a number of states.
{4:30 minutes to read} Although there is currently a nationwide stay in effect that blocks President Trump's Executive Order of Friday, January 27, the administration is said to be considering a reworking of the legislation that would allow individuals from the seven “banned countries” to enter the US if they had visas that were issued before the ban went into effect.

Is the H-1B in Danger From the Trump Administration?
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Is the H-1B in Danger From the Trump Administration? | Mitchell Zwaik

{2:48 minutes to read} H-1B season is upon us. H-1Bs are visas for professional workers. They are used primarily for high-tech companies bringing in computer programmers, engineers, etc.
The start date for the new visas is October 1st, the beginning of the government's fiscal year. You can apply for the visas six months before the start date, which is April 1st.
The limit on H-1B visas is 65,000 for people with bachelor's degrees, plus 20,000 for people with master's degrees. This limit is exhausted every year. Last year there were about 240,000 applications filed on April 1st for the 85,000 visas.

Will the Actions of the President be Counterproductive to His Goals?
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Will the Actions of the President be Counterproductive to His Goals? | Mitchell Zwaik

{4:00 minutes to read} Within a few days of his inauguration, the new President threw more than sixty years of US immigration policy into the shredder. He began with a war of words with Mexico and ended with a Muslim ban he later claimed was neither a ban nor directed at Muslims. This offensive is not only counterproductive in terms of cooperation with other countries in the general sense of the word, but it may very well become counterproductive in terms of his immigration policies. It sent a signal to the rest of the world that the US no longer welcomes immigrants.

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The Unfolding Story of Immigration in the U.S.
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, on .
The Unfolding Story of Immigration in the U.S. | Mitchell Zwaik

{3:00 minutes to read} What is going to happen with regard to immigration when the new administration takes office on January 20th? The simple answer is, we don’t know. Many immigrants in the United States, including some who have green cards, are experiencing a feeling of angst and fear. This is particularly true with undocumented Hispanics and many Muslims, including those in legal status in the US. The level of fear and concern is the highest I've ever seen. In many respects, it's worse than immediately after 9/11 when Muslims living in this country, legally and illegally, were terrified of what was going to happen.

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Immigration: 2 Things to Do Before the New Administration Takes Office
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Immigration: 2 Things to Do Before the New Administration Takes Office | Mitchell Zwaik

{3:36 minutes to read} What is going to happen with regard to immigration when the new administration takes office on January 20th? The simple answer is, we don’t know. There are 2 things I’m recommending that people do ASAP. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) There's a bill pending in the Senate, which would extend DACA. DACA is the Obama Executive Order that provides employment authorization for individuals who came to the U.S. under the age of 16, have lived here since June of 2007, and graduated or are attending school in this country.

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Zwaik, Gilbert & Associates Hires Director of Business Development
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Zwaik, Gilbert & Associates Hires Director of Business Development | Michael Zwaik

Ronkonkoma, New York -- Zwaik, Gilbert & Associates is pleased to announce that former Senior Congressional Aide, Leah Sullivan, has been hired as their new Director of Business Development. Leah will be responsible for the firm’s expansion and educating the public on new immigrant policies and initiatives. “We’re thrilled that Leah is joining our team,” said David Zwaik, Business Manager. “We’re confident she will help us expand into new territories and educate the public.”

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Employee Sponsorship Returns as a Real Possibility
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .

Visa Availability (3rd Preference Employment-Based) Surges Ahead After years of backlogs and a demand for numbers that far exceeded the yearly quota, one’s chances of winning the lottery seemed far greater than capturing a number in the third preference visa category.  For many years the wait in this category was so long that obtaining a green card through an employer seemed more of a pipe dream or an object always out of reach; never mind trying to convince an employer to start the green card process when it could take anywhere from 6 to 10 years to complete.

Click here to read Michael Zwaik's full article...

Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration: What Employers Need to Prepare For
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration: What Employers Need to Prepare For | Mitchell C. Zwaik

Despite the Republican takeover of the Senate in the midterm elections, President Obama moved forward with his executive action, providing relief from deportation for up to five million undocumented immigrants who have lived in the United States for more than five years, and either have a U.S. citizen or permanent resident son or daughter, or themselves entered the U.S. before the age of 16.

Although employers may not be directly affected by this change in policy, the collateral responsibilities and opportunities for many employers will be significant. With that in mind, here are some issues employers need to start thinking about and preparing for:

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Investment Visas: Win-Win Propositions
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Investment Visas: Win-Win Propositions | Mitchell C. Zwaik

Investor Visas serve as an important vehicle for foreign nationals and their spouses and minor children to enter the United States with the chance of gaining permanent residence and possibly U.S. citizenship - while at the same time stimulating the U.S. economy as a result of their investment.

The EB-5 Visa results in the holder getting a green card upon acceptance.

The 3 main requirements for this visa are that the investment must:

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Immigration Reform: Obama Undeterred
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Immigration Reform: Obama Undeterred | Mitchell C. Zwaik

Many immigration reform advocates feared that this summer’s influx of thousands of unaccompanied minors from Central America - and the resulting news coverage - would jeopardize President Obama’s announced plans for Executive Action and eventual immigration reform.

Fortunately, this does not appear to be the case at all. In fact, all indications from the White House point to the anticipated announcement of a comprehensive reform plan, one which could see up to half of the approximately 11 million undocumented immigrants in the country finally be granted some form of legal protection.

Click here to read Mitchell C. Zwaik's full article...

2 Major Changes President Obama May Soon Make to Our Immigration Laws
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
2 Major Changes President Obama May Soon Make to Our Immigration Laws | Mitchell C. Zwaik

President Obama is being pressured by the business community to soon use his executive authority to make major changes to assist legal immigration. He is taking these steps in the absence of any congressional action on immigration reform, and they are likely to have a major impact on our country’s immigration policy going forward.

1. The President would “recapture” extra visas that went unissued in the past.

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What is Next for DACA?
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
What is Next for DACA? | Mitchell C. Zwaik

Frustrated by Congress’ unwillingness to move forward with any meaningful immigration reform, President Obama promised to issue an Executive Order to make changes to our immigration laws unilaterally. What new provisions this Order will include is still uncertain, but the President has stated he plans to announce these new procedures in September. He wants to provide additional benefits for undocumented immigrants and correct some of the injustices present in our current laws.

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Announcement: Immigrants to Receive Government-Issued ID Cards
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Announcement: Immigrants to Receive Government-Issued ID Cards | Mitchell C. Zwaik

New York’s City Council is finally being proactive and showing initiative by enacting some new and important measures to improve the city’s immigration policies. There are an estimated half a million undocumented people living within the New York City area and they deserve to be treated humanely and fairly.

1. The City Council just passed a bill to give undocumented immigrants a government-issued ID card. To receive one, an applicant must simply prove his or her identity by producing documents such as a birth certificate or a valid passport from any country. Applicants must be able to prove they currently reside in New York, and can accomplish this through the display of utility bills, pay stubs or other such documents.

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Are You Prepared to File for Your DACA Renewal?
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Are You Prepared to File for Your DACA Renewal? | Mitchell C. Zwaik

Those who are currently living and working in the United States in DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) status should be aware that they may be required to renew that status well in advance of the expiration of their current status. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced it is preparing a new dual-use document (Form I-821D) that will replace both the existing initial application and renewal forms. Those who do wish to renew should remember that it is recommended they submit their applications 5 months before their current status expires.

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What Can You Do If Your Visa Petition Is Literally Taking Years to Process?
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
What Can You Do If Your Visa Petition Is Literally Taking Years to Process? | Mitchell C. Zwaik

Some foreign nationals experience an unfortunate side of the U.S. immigration process when their visa petitions get held up for seemingly no reason, for months or even years. What can someone do in that situation?

He or she can sue the federal government to compel it to take action. These are the steps we take to remedy such a situation:

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Immigration Law is in My Blood
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .
Immigration Law is in My Blood | Mitchell C. Zwaik

Even as a student in law school, I always had an interest in immigration, primarily because my uncle was an immigration attorney. He really seemed to love what he did.

Many lawyers seem to spend most of their time complaining about how much they hate their jobs, and some wind up so unhappy that they get out of the field altogether to pursue alternative professions.

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Immigration Issues for HR Professionals
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Authored by , re: Immigration law, LAW RELATED ARTICLES, on .

Acme Pools Inc. is in the business of installing and maintaining custom designed pools. The business was started by Harry Acme with a shovel and a pickup truck in January of 1980. Last year, the corporation reported earnings of $25 million. The shares of the corporation are owned equally by Harry and his wife, Wanda. Harry runs the day-to-day operations and Wanda is the part time bookkeeper. Sam, their son, supervises the pool installations. Although the company maintains a year round staff of seven employees, its payroll swells to 27 full and part time workers between March and October. Of the 20 additional employees who are hired during the busy season, 15 are returning workers and five are new hires.

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