News

Immigrant Legal Services Group to Host ‘Food from Inside the Travel Ban’

Justice For Our Neighbors (JFON), which provides legal services to immigrants, will host a fundraiser in Nashville called “Food from Inside the Travel Ban,” and will feature cuisine from Syria, Libya, Yemen, Sudan, Iran and Somalia. The event will be held at Vanderbilt University’s Wyatt Center on June 1 from 6 to 8 p.m. Tickets are available on the JFON website.
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Bill Allows Judges to Consider Immigration Status in Felony Sentencing

A bill passed by the state legislature but awaiting the governor’s approval would require Tennessee judges to consider immigration status as a felony enhancement factor, the Tennessean reports. Judges would be allowed to use their discretion in whether they would apply the enhancement. If Gov. Bill Haslam signs the bill into law, a court battle could ensue, as courts have struck down similar measures in other states. 
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Bill Allows Judges to Consider Immigration Status in Felony Sentencing

A bill passed by the state legislature but awaiting the governor’s approval would require Tennessee judges to consider immigration status as a felony enhancement factor, the Tennessean reports. Judges would be allowed to use their discretion in whether they would apply the enhancement. If Gov. Bill Haslam signs the bill into law, a court battle could ensue, as courts have struck down similar measures in other states. 
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TBA Convention in Kingsport is Just Around the Corner

Registration is open for the 2017 TBA Annual Convention. This years programming offers plenty of opportunities to make new friends and renew acquaintances with colleagues from across the state. The highlight comes Thursday night with the Kingsport Karnival at the downtown Farmers Market. Along with fabulous food and drink, there will be live music from two bands, an aerialist, juggler, magician, body and face painters, caricaturist and more. Plus, you'll have access to the fabulous Kingsport Carousel, the delightful project of community artisans. Special thanks to Eastman for support of this event! 

This years convention also offers 12 hours of CLE programming, highlighted by sessions on the Hatfields and McCoys, The Neuroscience of Decision-Making, and the popular Better Right Now wellness program. It is all set at the beautiful MeadowView Marriott Conference Resort & Convention Center. To receive the TBA $129 room rate, you must book your reservation by May 23. Book your room online now or call 423-578-6600.

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Call For Submissions — Law Practice Pointers

One of the benefits of being a TBA Section Member is having access to information from experienced practitioners to assist in your day-to-day practice. The sharing of this information amongst colleagues is one of the best traits of the profession. It is also a way of helping each other to maneuver the evolving legal market and strengthen your legal practice.

How can you help your fellow Section Members?  If you have some Law Practice Pointers you would like to share with your fellow section members, write an article between 300-500 words and submit it to the Section Coordinator for review and approval. These Law Practice Pointers can be related to a court opinion, piece of legislation, or current event or industry trend that affects the practice of law as it relates to the specific Section. The main requirement is to make sure the article gives lawyers practical tips, based on experience, to include in their day-to-day practice.

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DOJ to Ask for Dismissal of State Refugee Suit

The federal government will ask for dismissal of Tennessee’s lawsuit over refugee resettlement, the Tennessean reports. Attorneys for the Department of Justice said the state lacks standing and “their claim is unripe.” DOJ attorneys said they’d like until June 1 to prepare for their request for dismissal. In March, Tennessee became the first state to sue the federal government over refugee resettlement, citing violation of the 10th Amendment.
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ABA Expresses Concerns to DHS of Border Searches of Attorneys’ Electronics

ABA President Linda Klein sent a letter Friday to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) expressing concerns over standards that permit border patrol officers to search the content of lawyers’ electronic devices at U.S. border crossings without any showing of reasonable suspicion. “Just as border security is fundamental to national security, so too is the principle of client confidentiality fundamental to the American legal system,” Klein wrote.
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Many Pledge to 'Stand Against Racism' at YWCA Event

Several hundred people gathered in Nashville's Public Square Park today for the YWCA's annual Stand Against Racism event. The programming was led by Mayor Megan Barry and featured several lawyers and others speaking on the theme "Women of Color Leading Change." Among the speakers were Ana Escobar, with the Davidson County District Attorney General's Office; civil rights attorney Abby Rubenfeld; and Sharon Roberson, president and CEO of YWCA Nashville & Middle Tennessee. Melody Fowler-Green, with the Metro Human Relations Commission, and Beverly Watts, who serves on the Tennessee Supreme Court Access to Justice Commisson, led the crowd in committing to the pledge. See photos from the event.

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Understanding Automatic EAD Extensions

Effective Jan. 17, 2017, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security amended its regulations related to certain immigrant and highly-skilled non-immigrant workers. The new regulations include a provision for the automatic extension of certain Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) for up to 180 days in cases where a timely-filed EAD renewal is pending. Previously, once an EAD expired, the employee could not work until his or her renewal EAD application was approved. While the new rule provides more security and continuity for both employers and employees, it has created some confusion for employers seeking to ensure I-9 compliance. 

Not all EAD holders qualify for an automatic extension. The new rule allows for automatic extensions of EADs for up to 180 days for individuals who: 1) timely file their renewal applications, 2) apply based on the same employment authorization category as shown on the expiring EAD, and 3) fall into a qualifying employment authorization category. Employers will need to carefully review the expired EAD and pending receipt notice to ensure that all the requirements are met. 

The list of qualifying employment authorization categories are as follows:

  • Aliens admitted as refugees;
  • aliens granted asylum;
  • aliens admitted as parents or dependent children of aliens granted permanent residence under section 101(a)(27)(I) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(27)(I);
  • aliens admitted to the United States as citizens of the Federated States of Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, or Palau under agreements between the United States and those nations;
  • aliens granted withholding of deportation or removal;
  • aliens granted Temporary Protected Status (TPS);
  • aliens who have properly filed applications for TPS and who have been deemed prima facie eligible for TPS under 8 CFR 244.10(a) and have received an EAD as a “temporary treatment benefit”;
  • aliens who have properly filed applications for asylum or withholding of deportation or removal;
  • aliens who have filed applications for adjustment of status;
  • aliens who have filed applications for suspension of deportation under section 244 of the INA (as it existed prior to April 1, 1997), cancellation of removal under section 240A of the INA, or special rule cancellation of removal under section 309(f)(1) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996;
  • aliens who have filed applications for creation of record of lawful admission for permanent residence;
  • aliens who have properly filed legalization applications pursuant to section 210 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1160;
  • aliens who have properly filed legalization applications pursuant to section 245A of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1255a;
  • aliens who have filed applications for adjustment of status pursuant to section 1104 of the LIFE Act; and,
  • aliens who are the principal beneficiaries or qualified children of approved VAWA self-petitioners, under the employment authorization category ‘‘(c)(31)’’ in the form instructions to the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I–765).

The expiring EAD combined with a receipt notice is evidence of employment authorization for I-9 purposes. Employers who refuse to hire or terminate employees with 180-day extensions may be in violation of the INA’s antidiscrimination provisions, which prohibit discrimination based on a worker’s citizenship status, immigration status or national origin.  

In light of the fact that the Department of Homeland Security is expected to increase its focus on immigration enforcement and border security efforts in 2017, employers should be prepared for more Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Notices of Inspection to audit employers’ I-9 forms. The new rule on EAD automatic extensions allows employers to continue employing workers in lawful employment status for a longer period, while maintaining I-9 compliance. 

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Nora Katz is an immigration attorney at Waller Lansden Dortch and Davis, where she prepares immigrant and nonimmigrant filings to help employers grow and maintain competitive workforces. She received her bachelor’s degree from Tufts University and her law degree from the University of Colorado in Boulder. Katz may be reached at (615) 850-8730 or nora.katz@wallerlaw.com.

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What Is On the Horizon for Employment-Based Immigration?

Recent immigration news has focused on the executive order travel ban, “extreme vetting” for visas, and the specter of mass deportations. In contrast, the employment-based immigration news has involved more speculation than action. But the other shoe is soon to drop on the employment side. Here is where things stand in 2017:

January 17: The USCIS becomes no longer required to process Employment Authorization Document (EAD) applications within 90 days. It accepts EAD applications up to 180 days before expiration (rather than 120 days under the old rule) and an automatic 180-day work authorization extension applies to foreign nationals (but not their spouses) who are renewing an EAD. Spouses may find a “gap” in work authorization during which they cannot work.

January 18: A new Department of Justice (DOJ) regulation, related to cases before the Immigrants and Employees Rights Section (IER) (formerly referred to as OSC) clarifies and broadens the definition of discrimination to include “any intentional treatment differentiating employees because of national origin or citizenship, regardless of the reason for differentiation and regardless of whether such treatment is because of animus or hostility.” According to IER, this regulation merely incorporates the intent requirement contained in the amended statutes and case law but others view the language as broadening the definition. The definition of “hiring” is also expanded to include recruitment. The new regulation imposes liability for differentiating employees on the basis of national origin or citizenship even when no adverse action is involved

April 3: Until further notice, premium processing for an H-1B petition becomes no longer available, regardless of whether the petition is (1) a new petition, a transfer, an extension or amendment; (2) subject to or exempt from the H-1B quota, or (3) for a regular or master’s degree holder. Premium processing enabled an H-1B employer to receive a response on a petition within 15 calendar days after filing, in contrast to several months of waiting under regular processing. Though an individual who is moving from one company to another can move as soon as the filing receipt is in hand, many choose not to rely on this rule, understandably. Instead, they insist on having an approval of the transfer in hand before making the move. Without Premium processing, however, a lateral hire now takes several months to come on board. 

  • The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) indicates that it may eliminate or restrict the ability of H-4 spouses to obtain work permits.
  • The USCIS indicates that computer programmer jobs are no longer presumed to be eligible for the H-1B category, particularly for entry-level positions. Employers must now prove that a bachelor’s degree is a standard requirement by the company or the particular industry, or that the position is so complex, unique or specialized as to qualify as a “specialty occupation.” An entry-level wage “will likely contradict a claim” that the position is particularly complex, specialized or unique. Whether this view will be applied to other IT positions remains to be seen. The USCIS will apply this view to all H-1B petitions filed during the first week of April as part of the annual visa “lottery” system. Employers should be prepared to respond to written requests for additional evidence on computer programmers and perhaps other IT positions. This new level of scrutiny will also lengthen the overall processing time for these petitions.
  • The annual H-1B lottery opens and runs through April 7.  During those five days, approximately 199,000 H-1B petitions are received. Only 85,000 H-1Bs are available under the quota.

April 6: The Department of Labor (DOL), DHS and DOJ announce H-1B compliance initiatives and greater interagency coordination on enforcement efforts against H-1B violators. The DOL will increase audits and investigations of H-1B employers to ensure compliance and says that it is also considering changes to the Labor Condition Application process to provide “greater transparency” to U.S. workers and to the general public.  The USCIS fraud unit will focus site visits on H-1B dependent employers and employers who place H-1B workers at third-party worksites, such as IT firms. The DOJ issues a warning to H-1B employers that the displacement of a U.S. worker by a foreign national on a temporary visa may violate federal law prohibiting citizenship status discrimination.  

April 11:  The H-1B lottery system selects enough petitions to meet the 85,000 H-1B quota. All unselected petitions will be returned to the petitioning employer along with filing fees.  

April 18: The “Buy American and Hire American” executive order is signed, directing the DHS, DOL, DOJ and Department of State to propose “as soon as practicable” new employment-based immigration rules and guidance to protect the interests of U.S. workers. These agencies are also ordered to suggest reforms to “help ensure that H-1B visas are awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid petition beneficiaries.”

Takeaways:The “Buy American and Hire American” executive order will likely result in (1) increased H-1B required prevailing wage minimums, (2) raised H-1B petition filing fees, and (3) replacement of the H-1B lottery with a system favoring job positions that involve higher wages or advanced degrees. These agencies will likely propose limitations to the B-1 business visitor category, the training programs for F-1 students (OPT and CPT), and the L-1 visa category. Worksite compliance visits may soon expand to include the L-1B specialized knowledge category.

Employers must have in place an immigration compliance program covering all petitions that they file, including their Public Access Files in connection with H-1B petitions and their PERM Audit File relating to green card sponsorship.  As well, all I-9 and E-Verify recordkeeping must be in order as there is likely to be an increase in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) audits. Employers should also be prepared to receive closer scrutiny on work visa petitions and to wait substantially longer for decisions on those petitions.

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Dan E. White leads the practice at The Immigration Group in Nashville. Since 1986, his law practice has focused exclusively on business immigration matters.  He is a 1981 graduate of Vanderbilt Law School and an active member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. He may be contacted at (615) 340-5000 or dwhite@immigrationgrp.com

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What is Document Abuse and Who is Protected? OCAHO's Decision on Document Abuse

The Office of Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO) issued an interesting decision involving “document abuse,” which was recently renamed “unfair documentary practices” in the new regulations. U.S. v. Mar-Jac Poultry Inc., 12 OCAHO no. 1298 (March 2017).

The case started with a charge filed by Edwin Morales, a TPS recipient, with the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practice (OSC) alleging document abuse. Thereafter, OSC informed Mar-Jac that it was expanding its investigation to include “a possible pattern or practice of document abuse against non-U.S. citizens.” Based on its investigation, the OSC filed a complaint with OCAHO alleging in Count I – Mar-Jac committed document abuse against Morales and “other similarly situated persons” and Count II – Mar-Jac engaged in a “pattern or practice of discrimination in the hiring and Employment Eligibility Verification Process.”

In its Motion for Summary Judgment, Mar-Jac argued the statute only prohibits document abuse as it relates to protected individuals — U.S. citizens (USCs), recent lawful permanent residents (LPRs), refugees and asylees. Since Morales was a TPS recipient with an Employment Authorization card (EAD), Mar-Jac argued he was not protected regarding the document abuse allegations. The ALJ determined that “claims of document abuse with an intent or purpose of discriminating against an individual based on citizenship status is limited to claims against statutorily-defined protected individuals as defined in 8 U.S.C. § 1324b(a)(6).” Since Morales was on TPS, the ALJ agreed with Mar-Jac’s defense that Morales was not a protected individual.

Concerning Count II – whether Mar-Jac engaged in a pattern or practice of discrimination, Mar-Jac conceded its HR employees required potential applicants to present a photo ID and a Social Security card in order to obtain an employment application. Without such, Mar-Jac did not provide them with an application.

Also, if a person checked a box on Section 1 of the I-9 form as a LPR or authorized to work and presented Lists B and C documents, such as a driver’s license and Social Security card, respectively, the Mar-Jac HR employee would request the LPR card or EAD. Mar-Jac’s witnesses stated this request was made to make sure the card was valid and they believed E-Verify required non-USCs to present their LPR card or EAD. The witnesses acknowledged they were mistaken in their beliefs. Mar-Jac conceded USCs were not requested to present a particular document.

Mar-Jac argued it had a legitimate, non-discriminatory reason, to verify the correct box was marked in Section 1, when its HR employees asked non-USCs to see their List A document – LPR card or EAD. Mar-Jac asserted it followed this practice in order to have Sections 1 and 2 accurately completed and to avoid non-compliance with the completion of the I-9 form, which could cause civil and criminal liability. Mar-Jac also argued it required non-USCs to present a List A document because of a mistaken belief that E-Verify required it; thus, it had no discriminatory intent. Furthermore, Mar-Jac asserted requests related to E-Verify are not covered by 8 U.S.C. § 1324b; thus, no violations should be found.

To establish a case of document abuse, the decision stated a complainant must show (1) “that, in connection with the employment verification process required by 8 U.S.C. § 1324a(b), an employer has requested from the employee more or different documents than those required or has rejected otherwise acceptable valid documents and (2) that either of these actions was undertaken for the purpose or with the intent of discriminating against the employee on account of the employee’s national origin or citizenship status.”

One of the issues in the case was the requisite intent required to prove the violations. OSC asserted U.S. v. Life Generations, a 2014 OCAHO decision, stated an intent to discriminate means that a person “would have acted differently but for the protected characteristic.” Mar-Jac argued it had no intent to discriminate because a significant portion of its workforce were non-USCs. Furthermore, their actions were merely designed to “assist the applicant in satisfying the requirements of the Form I-9.” The ALJ stated discriminatory intent does not require “malice, ill will, or a malevolent nature.” Thus, Mar-Jac’s arguments were without merit.

The ALJ concluded the testimony of Mar-Jac’s HR employees established direct evidence of discriminatory intent – the requests to see a DHS-issued document, LPR card or EAD, was motivated by the individual’s LPR or work-authorized status. Thus, the ALJ found the company “engaged in prohibited documentary practices by virtue of both specifying the kind of document that a new hire had to present, and requesting an additional document when a new hire sufficiently presented Lists B and C documents. Moreover, Mar-Jac’s documentary practices were carried out for the purposes of satisfying employment verification requirements of 8 U.S.C. § 1324a(b).”

As for Mar-Jac’s remaining defense that it completed Section 1 as the preparer/translator and thus it needed to verify the information listed to avoid civil and criminal liability, the ALJ stated, “Although the preparer/translator attestation in Section 1 requires an attestation that the information contained therein is true and correct to the best of the preparer/translator’s knowledge, that standard does not require absolute metaphysical certainty – or even actual knowledge – regarding the information from the preparer/translator and in no way requires an employer to ask to see a document to verify the information.”

Therefore, the OCAHO ALJ found Mar-Jac committed the violations alleged in Count II. A determination on the civil penalties and back pay were left for a later time. Furthermore, Mar-Jac has the right to appeal the ALJ’s decision to the chief judge of OCAHO.

This decision shows employees can be mistaken on the proper manner to complete the I-9 form. Therefore, it is crucial that employers obtain regular training from immigration counsel on immigration compliance issues.
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Bruce E. Buchanan is a founding partner of Sebelist Buchanan Law PLLC located in Nashville and Atlanta. He is also “Of Counsel” to Siskind Susser PC on employer immigration compliance matters. He is a graduate of Vanderbilt University School of Law. He is editor of this newsletter and past-chair of the TBA’s Immigration Law Section. Buchanan writes a blog on employer immigration compliance located at www.EmployerImmigration.com.  He may be reached at bbuchanan@sblimmigration.com or (615) 345-0266.

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Letter from the Editor

I would like to thank Dan White and Nora Katz for providing their excellent articles in this issue. You may notice that this issue only discusses employer-related immigration issues. I would welcome attorneys who wish to contribute family-based immigration issues and immigration court/custody issues. If that’s you, please feel free to contact me at bbuchanan@sblimmigration.com or 615-345-0266.

It was wonderful to see so many members at the annual Immigration Law Seminar. Terry Olsen deserves a round of applause for organizing this year’s seminar.

Bruce Buchanan

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Sessions ‘Amazed’ that Hawaii Judge Blocked Travel Ban

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said he was “amazed” that a judge “sitting on an island in the Pacific” could halt President Donald Trump’s travel ban executive order. Sessions' comment drew criticism from Hawaiian elected officials, the Hill reports. A federal judge in the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in Hawaii put a temporary suspension on Trump’s second travel ban in March. Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, pointed out in a statement against Sessions’ comments that the AG voted to confirm the judge in question while he was still representing Alabama in the Senate.
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ABA Files Amicus Brief to Uphold Travel Ban Injunction

The American Bar Association has filed an amicus brief in the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to let stand an injunction blocking President Donald Trump’s travel ban, the ABA Journal reports. The brief was filed on behalf of the International Refugee Assistance Project and other plaintiffs. The ABA House of Delegates passed a resolution at this year’s midyear meeting, raising concerns about the original travel ban and urging the president to “not use religion or nationality as a basis for barring an otherwise eligible individual from admission to the United States.”
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Tennessee AG Joins States Supporting Trump Travel Ban

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery filed an amicus brief with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in favor of President Donald Trump’s updated travel ban, the Tennessean reports. That adds Slatery to a list of officials in 15 states who believe the decision from the U.S. District Court in Hawaii should be reversed. That decision halted the president’s second version of the travel ban.
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Tennessee AG Joins States Supporting Trump Travel Ban

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert Slatery filed an amicus brief with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in favor of President Donald Trump’s updated travel ban, the Tennessean reports. That adds Slatery to a list of officials in 15 states who believe the decision from the U.S. District Court in Hawaii should be reversed. That decision halted the president’s second version of the travel ban.
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Twitter Withdraws Lawsuit Against Homeland Security

Twitter has withdrawn a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security after the agency withdrew its order asking Twitter to reveal the user behind a critical account, NPR reports. The department had demanded the login information, phone number, mailing address and IP address of the user behind the “@ALT_uscis” account, which is allegedly run by Citizenship and Immigration Services employees. The agency had threatened legal action against the social media company if it did not comply. 
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U.S. Supreme Court Hears Case of Tennessee Immigrant

The case of a Memphis restauranteur who faces deportation after pleading guilty to a drug charge was heard before the U.S. Supreme Court last week, the Washington Post reports. Jae Lee’s lawyer told him there was no way he’d be deported if he took a plea deal, but he was wrong. The court will decide whether Lee should be given a second chance in court due to bad lawyering. Lee is a legal resident who has lived most of his life in the United States. "This case answers what kind of prejudice you have to show in order to get relief from the mistakes made by your trial lawyer," said one of Lee's lawyers, Patrick McNally of Nashville.
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U.S. Supreme Court Hears Case of Tennessee Immigrant

The case of a Memphis restauranteur who faces deportation after pleading guilty to a drug charge was heard before the U.S. Supreme Court last week, the Washington Post reports. Jae Lee’s lawyer told him there was no way he’d be deported if he took a plea deal, but he was wrong. The court will decide whether Lee should be given a second chance in court due to bad lawyering. Lee is a legal resident who has lived most of his life in the United States. "This case answers what kind of prejudice you have to show in order to get relief from the mistakes made by your trial lawyer," said one of Lee's lawyers, Patrick McNally of Nashville.
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U.S. Supreme Court Hears Case of Tennessee Immigrant

The case of a Memphis restauranteur who faces deportation after pleading guilty to a drug charge was heard before the U.S. Supreme Court last week, the Washington Post reports. Jae Lee’s lawyer told him there was no way he’d be deported if he took a plea deal, but he was wrong. The court will decide whether Lee should be given a second chance in court due to bad lawyering. Lee is a legal resident who has lived most of his life in the United States. "This case answers what kind of prejudice you have to show in order to get relief from the mistakes made by your trial lawyer," said one of Lee's lawyers, Patrick McNally of Nashville.
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CLE Outlines How to Change Your Practice to Meet Market Demands

The fourth and final CLE in the “Modern Law Practice Series” will explore emerging trends in the delivery of legal services and how focusing on consumer behavior could benefit your law firm. This session will examine the ways in which consumer-facing companies like Avvo and LegalZoom have capitalized on tailoring services to the needs of the modern legal client and how you can adjust your practice to meet those same demands. The program will be held April 13, and will be available in person and on-demand.

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Immigration Law Forum 2017: International Business Immigration Issues

On the afternoon of April 7, a CLE on immigration law will  be held at the Bar Center. Sessions will focus on U.S. and international business investment immigration issues facing both immigration and non-immigration attorneys such as corporate counsel, employment law, and technology law attorneys. Featured speakers will include government/NGO representatives, cross border company executives, and cross border services representatives. Find out more and register here.

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Rogero: Knoxville Police Aren’t Immigration Agents

Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero said in a news conference yesterday that the Knoxville police “will not voluntarily be ICE agents,” Knoxnews reports. Rogero went on to say that it was a safety issue, as the city “cannot do that if people are afraid of calling us when something happens.” At the conference, stories were shared of immigrants who were afraid to even call the health department for services, in fear of being taken away from their children.
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Register Today for the TBA Immigration Law Section Business Immigration Investment Seminar

I want to update you and provide additional information about the Business Immigration Investment Seminar on April 7 that the TBA Immigration Section is sponsoring.

In addition to the traditional U.S. Government Forum/Seminar that the TBA Immigration Section gives every year (with CIS, ICE ERO, ICE Counsel), we decided that this year we would give a Business Immigration Investment Seminar due to the fact that Tennessee has been the number one state for the past three years for international investment.

We have created a three-hour afternoon seminar/forum with three panels covering business immigration investment issues from the varying perspectives of the government sector, private industry/company sector, and cross border/financial services sector, with the following speakers:

1) State, Federal & International Government Perspective(s) Panel, including:

  • The Tennessee Economic Development Office (Nashville);
  • Director of Appalachian EB5 Regional Center (Asheville, North Carolina);
  • Director of Bluegrass International Fund EB5 Regional Center (Louisville); and
  • Director General of British Consulate (Atlanta).

2)      State, National and International Company Perspective(s) Panel, inlcuding the:

  • Executive/Director GE Power (Chattanooga);
  • President of Astra Services (Coral Springs, Florida);
  • President of Business Strategies/Plans (Miami); and
  • Note: A VW executive is also tentatively scheduled.

3)      State, National & International Cross Border and Financial Services Perspective(s), including the:

  • Director of FedEx E-Commerce (Memphis);
  • Financial Advisor of Merrill Edge/Bank of America (Chattanooga); and
  • Partner of International Tax Firm (Washington, D.C.). 

This seminar will be held at the Tennessee Bar Center in Nashville on April 7 from 1 p.m. through 4:15 p.m.  Additional information — along with registration details — can be found on the TBA.org website.

— Terry Olsen is chair of the TBA immigration Law Section

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Second Travel Ban Blocked; Trump Responds with Attack on Judiciary

President Donald Trump criticized the judiciary while on a visit to Nashville yesterday, saying that a federal judge in Hawaii struck down his second travel ban for “political reasons,” the Nashville Post reports. He made comments citing “unprecedented judicial overreach” and said that the Hawaii ruling “makes us look weak.” In addition to the order from Hawaii, a second federal judge in Maryland ruled overnight against a core provision of the ban, the New York Times reports.
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