Wednesday, November 16, 2016


American Public Media’s radio program Marketplace recently broadcast a story regarding the nursing shortage in the US, which is predicted to worsen over the next ten years.  The shortage is expected for the following reasons:
  1. More than one third of RNs in the United States are over the age of 50 and will begin retiring or working less hours in the coming years. 
  2. As these RNs retire, there are not enough new RNs to fill the open positions. 
  3.  The cost of training new RNs is going up.  Many RNs graduate with over $70,000 of debt, which has dissuaded some students from pursuing a career as an RN.  This has also led some US lawmakers to consider government grants for nursing students.  
  4.  By 2025 nearly 70 million Americans will be over the age of 65 and many will have chronic illnesses which will likely create more demand for RNs in the United States.
  5.  Many more Americans have access to healthcare under the Affordable Care Act (also called Obamacare); this too will cause more demand for medical treatment and the need for RNs.

The US Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment of RNs will grow 16% from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for other occupations.  Job opportunities for RNs are expected to be good.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016


MU’s Chris Musillo is a featured speaker at the Visa Solutions Seminars in Chicago and in the Bay Area.  Chris is speaking with Dave Brown of Brown Immigration in Omaha, Nebraska.  Chris and Dave bring over 30 years of combined business immigration experience. 

Register here.

The Chicago seminar is Tuesday November 29, 2016 8AM – 10AM at the Chicago Marriott Southwest. 

The Bay Area seminars are:

  • Sunnyvale, CA - Wednesday, December 7th, 2016 (8AM – 10AM), Plug and Play Tech Center, 440 N. Wolfe Road.
  • Oakland, CA - Wednesday, December 7th, 2016 (3PM – 4:30PM), Rosenblum Cellars, 10 Clay Street, Oakland, CA 94607, Complimentary wine tasting included after the event.
  • San Francisco, CA - Thursday, December 8th, 2016 (8AM – 10 AM), Hyatt Regency, 5 Embarcadero Center.

Registration is free if made in advance of the seminar.  The seminar will run for 90 minutes. The morning seminars include a complimentary breakfast and coffee. 

This program is valid for 1.5 PDCs for the SHRM-CPSM or SHRM-SCPSM andy has met HR Certification Institute’s (HRCI) criteria for recertification credit pre-approval.

Seminar Topics
  • Navigating the 10 Most Important Immigration Issues Facing HR Today
  • How do I structure the PERM filing to avoid audit triggers?
  • How do I avoid hurting retention/morale while filing H-1s or PERMs?
  • Considering the scarcity of H-1B visas, what other options exist for recruiting foreign talent?
  • When is Premium Processing truly necessary and/or paid for by the company? When should a company allow an employee to pay it personally?
  • How and when should employers initiate the green card process?
  • When does the H-1B wage obligation start? When does it end? How does an employer effect a bona fide H-1B termination?
  • How do I create the perfect Public Access File and deal with a Department of Labor audit of a company’s H-1B files? What does the DOL look for?
  • Given last year’s Simeio Solutions decision – when/why must I file an amendment H-1B when someone moves location? And how do I avoid this problem?
  • How do I manage Customs and Border Protection issues and their penchant for incorrectly issuing Form I-94s at the port of entry?
  • How should I prepare for changing immigration policy under Donald Trump?

Wednesday, November 9, 2016


The Department of State has just issued the December 2016 Visa Bulletin.  This is the third Visa Bulletin of Fiscal Year 2017.  This blog post analyzes this month's Visa Bulletin.

December 2016 Visa Bulletin

Final Action Dates

Applications with these dates may be approved for their Green Card (Permanent Residency card).

All Charge-
Areas Except
Those Listed

MU Law Analysis

All Other:  The EB-2 has been current for many years.  The EB-3 progression continues.  For Consular processing cases a July 2016 date is effectively Current.

China:   The China EB-2 date moved up two months. The China EB-3 date progressed three months.  The China EB-3 continues to have a more favorable date than EB-2, as a result of many Chinese EB-3 workers "upgrading" their applications to EB-2.

India:  EB-2 India had another impressive progression from last month, moving forward three months.  EB-3 moved ahead by one week.  

Mexico: Mirrors All Other in all aspects.

Philippines: EB-3 moved ahead by another two months.  The Philippine EB-3 number essentially cleaned out all 2010 EB-3 visas and half of the 2011 EB-2 visas in just three months.  This is what we have expected.  (Our note from September 2016: "This is consistent with internal MU Law analysis which sees this category progressing into 2013 by the Summer of 2017.").  

We expect more of the same fast progression in FY2017 for Philippine EB-3.  We expect that the Philippine EB-3 number will progress at least three years in FY2017.

Monday, November 7, 2016


On Tuesday US voters will go to the polls to elect 435 House of Reprehensive members, 34 Senators, and of course, a new US President and Vice President.  The biennial election will set the stage for the next two years of federal legislation.  Pundits are calling it the most important election of our lifetime and are predicting massive changes in immigration law.

If Hilary Clinton is elected, she promises to make immigration a top priority.  She is calling for Comprehensive Immigration Reform including a pathway to legalization for millions of undocumented and illegal foreign nationals.  She expects to have legislation proposed within her first 100 days.

If Donald Trump is elected, he is calling for  a wall along the US-Mexican border and greatly increased regulation in all corners of immigration.  His changes to the law will begin immediately

It seems unlikely to MU Law that any of this happen immediately.  It also seems unlikely that any immigration changes will be incremental, not dramatic. 

Immigration laws are implemented in two basic ways: legislatively and administratively.  Legislative laws must pass both branches of Congress, the House and the Senate.  The betting markets have concluded that the most likely outcome for this week’s election is that Hillary Clinton will win the presidency, the Democratic Party will have a tiny majority in the Senate, and the House will remain in significant Republican control.  Betting markets have proven to be a more reliable predictor of electoral outcomes than polls or pundits. 

That outcome is a recipe for gridlock.  Even if Hillary Clinton wants to push for a massive legalization program, she will need to convince at least 50% of the House membership to go along with the plan.  It is unlikely that a Republican- controlled House will want any part of a Clinton-inspired immigration bill.  They will be much more likely to spend their time on more email investigations and Benghazi hearings.

A President-elect Clinton may be able to make some progress on administrative changes, which is also known as Executive Action.  Administrative changes are interpretations of law by the Department of Homeland Security.  The President ultimately sets all policy for administrative agencies such as DHS. 

President Obama had some success in this area, such as sanctioning the DACA rules, which allowed undocumented foreign nationals to obtain work authorization if they entered the US as children, provided that they had no other criminal record.  

Through the USCIS, President Obama announced some additional Executive Action in November 2014.  He has had mixed success in this area.  He was rebuked by the courts for overstepping his administrative authority when he sought to create DAPA, a program that would have extended DACA-like rights to undocumented parents of US citizens and permanent residents.  On the other hand, the USCIS has expanded work authorization for certain spouses of H-1B visa holders. 

Which leads to our prediction: Hillary Clinton will win the US Presidency but will not have success passing meaningful immigration legislation.  She may be able to make marginal changes to immigration policy through administrative decision-making, which will likely be less-dramatic and newsworthy.