AILA Files Lawsuit for USCIS to Suspend Immigration Deadlines and Maintenance of Status for Nonimmigrants in the U.S. Due to COVID-19
April 6, 2020
The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) has filed a complaint against USCIS calling for the immediate suspension of immigration benefit deadlines and the maintenance of status for nonimmigrants in the U.S. Previously, AILA had written a letter to the USCIS on March 23, requesting these measures but has had no favorable response.
According to a press release issued by the organization, AILA Director of Federal Litigation Jesse Bless said, “USCIS has every power to immediately and temporarily toll any and all immigration-related deadlines and expiration of status to the benefit of U.S. employers, lawfully admitted foreign nationals, and the public. Many of those fighting on the front lines – our nurses and healthcare workers – are foreign nationals on nonimmigrant visas. At present, immigration attorneys seeking to effectively represent U.S. employers and foreign nationals face a dangerous catch-22: risk exposure and try to protect their clients’ immigration status or protect themselves and risk putting their clients’ cases or rights in jeopardy.”
AILA President Marketa Lindt said, “Across the country, immigration attorneys and their clients are being forced to choose between missing a filing deadline and violating stay at home orders and exposing themselves, their staff and their clients to a deadly illness. USCIS must join many other federal agencies in extending its filing deadlines so that lawfully present foreign nationals in the United States can maintain status during this national crisis. By refusing to do so, USCIS is needlessly endangering lives.”
Weaver Schlenger is continuing to monitor deadlines and file all cases in a timely manner. We will report any updates to this topic on our website.