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South Carolina workers face new citizenship rules

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has announced that it would implement a new rule on Feb. 16, 2016. The rule will apply to certain individuals who want to enter the U.S. as highly-skilled workers and promote immigration that seeks to boost employment.

The new rule is set to ease processing for certain individuals who qualify as skilled workers. It will amend the list of non-immigrant persons who are eligible for as many as 240 days of additional continual employment authorization past an existing expiration date to include E-3 Australian nationals, H-1B1 holders from Chile and Singapore and CW-1 petitioners from the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

Foreign nationals who want to be sponsored under EB-1 petitions, which pertain to professors and researchers in pursuit of permanent residency, will also be given more leeway when it comes to submitting evidence of their academic work. The rule will also provide that E-3 and H1B1 non-immigrant individuals do not need to obtain separate employment authorizations because their statuses make them eligible for work.

Changes in immigration and visa law can facilitate or promote alternate paths to citizenship for a range of individuals. Immigrant visa rules, however, are often subject to change due to political climates and other societal factors that may increase the difficulty of immigration for certain people. Those who seek to enter the country and work or pursue education may find it helpful to meet with an experienced immigration attorney in order to learn about the pathways that may be available to them.

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