My 2015 Christmas Wish List

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Dear Santa,

With Christmas approaching quickly, I wanted to make sure you knew what gifts we’d love to have this year under our Christmas Trees. We’ve worked really hard this year to help our clients with their immigration problems, but we could use a few more tools around our office to better help our clients. Here is my wish list:

• DAPA – Last year, the White House tried to give a deferred action plan for parents of United States citizens, a program that would defer action and grant employment authorization (work permits) to foreign nationals who were not a security or public safety threat. However, in February 2015, a federal judge blocked the program. It has made its way through the federal courts and the United States Supreme Court is now deciding whether it should review the case. Please, Santa, bring us deferred action so that deserving people can come out of the shadows, register with the Department of Homeland Security, and legally find employment.

• U Visa Numbers – Every year, USCIS is permitted, by law, to grant 10,000 U visas. As you know, a U visa is a special visa for people who have been victims of specific crimes. Right now, according to recent USCIS numbers, there are approximately 63,762 pending U visa cases. In fiscal year 2015, more than 30,000 people applied for U visa status. Clearly, 10,000 visas per year is not enough and people who file today will wait 5-6 years or more for their visa to become available. Please, Santa, bring us more U visa numbers!

• H-1B Numbers – Santa, every year the demand for skilled workers in the H-1B program is increasingly higher, and this year was no exception. We would love for more H-1B visas to be granted and for other ways to help keep pressure off of the H-1B program, like employment authorization for derivative spouses, expanded and improved OPT programs, and better portability guidance. Of course, we would love to have more visas available to help grow America’s economy, as well!

• Expanded Waiver Programs – Santa, the Provisional Waiver program has been largely a big success in American immigration law. For now, however, the program is only available to spouses of United States citizens. Updating the regulations to allow all immigrants with a current priority date to file for provisional waivers will help reduce the family separation and time processing abroad.

Thank you, Santa, for remembering the immigrants. The milk and cookies will be on the mantle for you.

Bryon

Tagged in: DAPA H-1B OPT STEM U Visa

Bryon M. Large, Sr. is a Senior Associate Attorney at Kolko & Associates, P.C., a Denver-based full service immigration law firm. He is licensed to practice law by the Colorado Supreme Court and has also been admitted by the United States District Court for the District of Colorado and the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. He received his Juris Doctor degree from the University of Denver and his undergraduate degree from the University of New Mexico. Bryon actively practices removal defense, federal litigation, family-based and employment-based immigration, asylum and naturalization.


Bryon is a past Chapter Chair for the Colorado Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), as well as a Past Chair of the Immigration Law Section of the Colorado Bar Association. He currently serves as the President of the Colorado LGBT Bar Association, an Elected Director on the AILA Board of Governors, and is a member of the National LGBT Bar Association.


Bryon’s true passion in life is being a father to his two children.

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Kolko & Associates is a full service immigration and naturalization law firm providing professional legal services to individuals and businesses throughout Colorado, the Rocky Mountain West, the United States, and the World. Our professional staff speaks English, Spanish, Korean, German, and Slovak, and we can arrange for translators in any other language.