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September 2014 Archives

Possible change in employment status for H-4 visa holders

Individuals in Pennsylvania who hold an H-4 visa may be interested to hear that the Department of Homeland Security may make it possible for some of them to work with some limitations. At present, the visa is offered mainly to the spouses of H-1B visa holders. More than 60 percent of the H-1B visa holders are Indian, and most work in science, engineering or technology positions.

Asylum granted to Ugandan gay rights advocate

Pennsylvania residents may recall media coverage of laws adopted in Uganda that outlawed homosexuality. The legislation, which was signed by Uganda's president in February 2014, included serious penalties for sexual activity between same-sex couples. According to media outlets, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced on Sept. 11 that a prominent Ugandan LGBT rights advocate's request for asylum was recommended for approval pending a background check. Since the anti-homosexuality bill came into effect in Uganda, the 41-year-old is believed to be the first LGBT rights advocate from that country to seek asylum.

How do I become a U.S. citizen if I have a green card?

Pennsylvania residents may not realize that one of the most common paths to citizenship in the United States is applying for naturalization after holding a green card. An individual who has had a green card for a minimum of five years may be able to qualify for citizenship if certain additional requirements are met. A Form N-400, also called Application for Naturalization, is used to apply for citizenship.

Ruling may impact undocumented immigrants in Pennsylvania

The Justice Department's Board of Immigration Appeals ruled on Aug. 26 that victims of domestic abuse could qualify for asylum. The ruling came after a Guatemalan women claimed that she entered the country illegally in 2005 to escape her abusive husband. She also said that the police would not respond to her calls for help. The ruling in the case was not contested by the Department of Homeland Security, and an attorney for the woman says that she believes that she will ultimately win her case.