Our Legal Services
Physician Immigration is one of our specialty areas of practice. We have been
handling Conrad State 30 (previously State 20) J-1 Waiver cases since Congress
first enacted the state J-1 waiver program in 1994. Our firm handles State 30
waivers in several states across the country. In addition, we have obtained
J-1 waivers through the federal government’s Appalachian Regional Commission.
We also prepare and file National Interest Waiver (NIW) and PERM Labor
Certification cases for Permanent Residency for physicians. Our physician
immigration employer clients include several large hospitalist companies and a
number of hospitals and medical centers throughout the United States.
Law Office of Brelje and Associates, P.C. specializes in obtaining employment visas of all types. These include H-1B status for professionals under the “specialty occupation” category; L-1 intracompany transferee status for companies with parent, subsidiary or affiliate organizations abroad; TN status for nationals of Canada and Mexico under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA); PERM labor certification for permanent residency for employees; H-2B visas for temporary, non-agricultural workers; O-1 visas for foreign nationals with “outstanding ability”; and P-1 visas for professional athletes. The firm also counsels employers and employees with regard to B-1 business visitor visas and entry on the Visa Waiver Program.
Typical professional occupational classifications include managers and executives, physicians, software engineers, programmer analysts, aerospace engineers, system analysts, electrical and structural engineers, accountants, lawyers, teachers and architects. Various construction and other trades, technical, service and hospitality positions can be included in either H-2B status, or in some cases, TN status. Some may also qualify for PERM labor certification for permanent residency.
EB-5 Alien Entrepreneur
Employment Creation Visas
Our attorneys have experience with the EB-5 Alien Entrepreneur visa process
dating back to the early 1990’s, soon after Congress passed legislation
enacting the EB-5 program. Permanent residency is available to a foreign
national who invests at least $500,000 in a U.S. business and thereby creates
at least 10 jobs for U.S. workers. The required amount of investment is
$1,000,000 if the location of the investment is not a “targeted employment
We offer EB-5
representation to investors who wish to start their own businesses, who wish
to take over a troubled U.S. business, or to limited partners who invest in a
project within a “Regional Center” that is pre-approved for “targeted
employment area” status. We work closely with one such Regional Center that
has obtained targeted employment area approval, and whose projects incorporate
conservative investor/employment ratios and realistic exit strategies.
Law Offices of Brelje and Associates, P.C. provides employers with I-9 employment verification compliance counseling. The firm provides training tailored to our employer clients’ corporate structure and needs. I-9 trainings are often presented to a client’s HR staff and include protocols for proper I-9 form completion, tips for handling difficult or unusual work authorization documentation, recommended procedures for storing I-9 documentation, systems for alerting employees of status expiration and “tickling” I-9 forms that require reverification.
The firm also offers informal audits of an employer’s I-9 forms, with the option of reviewing a representative sample of I-9s to detect patterns of non-compliance and training issues. Law Offices of Brelje and Associates, P.C. represents employers who have been served with DHS subpoenas and are being audited by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) special agents. The firm also represents employers in the administrative court process in the event an ICE audit evolves into litigation.
Perceiving that the federal government has failed to adequately address the country’s immigration issues, a number of states have passed their own immigration legislation. Several states including Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Utah have laws that sanction employers for immigration law violations. Our firm tracks states’ immigration laws and monitors the progress of state immigration bills that have a chance of becoming law. We provide our employer clients who do business in one of the affected states or who do business in a number of states, analysis of the various state immigration laws that can have an impact on business operations.
Law Offices of Brelje and Associates, P.C. monitors various immigration reform bills and legislative proposals, sometimes referred to as Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR). The firm sends periodic updates to employers who may benefit from CIR or who want to make sure they are in compliance with new enforcement legislation. One possible component of CIR is a “legalization” program for individuals who are currently in the U.S. without proper immigration status. Law Offices of Brelje and Associates, P.C. has developed a protocol for providing educational sessions in English and Spanish for a client’s employees that will provide information as to who will qualify for legalization; when applications will be accepted; and a specialized software program used to collect pertinent information, complete the required forms and track the progress of the legalization process.
In addition to legalization, some CIR proposals include an enhanced “guestworker” program. One proposal would make 200,000 such visas available per year to skilled and unskilled workers, following the completion of certain border enforcement measures. A new guestworker program would not be as restrictive as the H-2A agricultural program and the H-2B non-agricultural worker program. Moreover, the numbers of available visas per year is projected to be much higher than the current limits on H-2A and H-2B. Law Offices of Brelje and Associates, P.C. monitors these guestworker provisions as well, and the firm sends periodic updates to interested employers.
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