Important Update for Employers with Work Visa Petitions during COVID-19 National Emergency
What is going on?
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that because of the COVID-19 national emergency declared by President Trump, they will accept all benefit forms and documents with reproduced original signatures. This includes submissions of the Form I-129 dated March 21, 2020 and after.
The USCIS alert states that this temporary change only applies to signatures, and that the parties involved in submitting the documents with the reproduced original signature must keep all copies of the documents with the original ("wet") signature. If the individuals or entities who submitted the form are not able to produce the original documents if requested by USCIS, this could negatively affect the decision regarding the immigration benefit.
What should employers do?
Given these updates, we suggest employers try to continue with wet signatures, if at all possible. If not possible, then employers should print, sign, scan and send USCIS documents to their business immigration lawyers. Additionally, they should keep the wet signature page in the case USCIS requests the original documents.
Business Immigration Lawyer
The information provided here does not constitute legal advice. It is general information regarding law and policy that may be applicable to your particular HR issue or legal problem. Information provided in this blog, or any of our other public posts, does not create an attorney-client relationship. For specific advice you can rely upon, please contact your attorney.