Monitoring practical developments in immigration law practice, theVISAGeek™ provides timely and insightful immigration law guideposts

TheVISAGeek™ is a publication of the immigration law firm of Lipson & Pretorius LLP. With over 50 years combined experience, we focus on immigration law for Entrepreneurs, Start-ups, Investors, Business and Research professionals as well as Artists and Entertainers worldwide.


K-3 Visa: Processing for Spouses Married Overseas

The “K-3” visa is a nonimmigrant visa available to foreign national spouses of U.S. citizens. The intent of this visa is to shorten the couple’s physical separation – ordinarily, the foreign national must remain outside the U.S. during visa processing. The K-3 visa allows the foreign national to enter the U.S. and remain with the… Read more »

Divorce After Green Card: Caveats for Citizenship

What happens if I divorce after the approval of the joint petition to remove the condition (I-751) on my green card? A client whom we represented for the green card and the joint petition on removal of the condition on the green card, contacted us to tell us that he wished to divorce his U.S…. Read more »

What Types of Jobs must be Created for the EB5 Green Card?

The simple answer to this question is ten full-time jobs. There are many complexities however related to what types of jobs end up satisfying the immigration service. This issue begins at the initial I526 filing stages when an investor must provide the immigration service with a comprehensive business plan to evidence and convince the USCIS… Read more »

J-1 Waiver Based on Support From an IGA: Guidelines from USDA

One approach for obtaining a waiver of the J-1 2-year home residency requirement relies on support from an Interested Government Agency (IGA) One of four possible grounds for a J-1 waiver includes the support of an interested United States Government agency.  According to the regulations, the foreign national applicant must be “actively and substantially involved… Read more »

Diversity Lottery 2015 Offers 50,000 Visas to Qualifying Applicants

Make sure you meet all the detailed qualifications before you apply! The U.S. Department of State has announced that the Diversity Lottery for Fiscal Year 2015 will be open for applications beginning October 1, 2013.  The Diversity Lottery targets immigrants from countries with traditionally low rates of immigration, and 50,000 visas will be available via… Read more »

Current Startup Visa Options are Seriously Flawed

The current immigration framework is very unkind to non-U.S. citizen entrepreneurs. As roughly half of all the Silicon Valley startups have at least one foreign-born founder ( this is a major issue in the greater San Jose and San Francisco Bay area. Unfortunately I sometimes come across individual clients with fantastic tech ideas, enthusiasm, goals, and… Read more »

Can I Get a Green Card with my L-1 Visa

A frequent question that arises in my processing of L-1 visa and permanent residency, green card, applications is whether L-1 applicants can obtain a Green Card.  The answer is yes, L-1 foreign nationals who are managers and executives under the L-1 program are eligible for the “priority workers” Employment Based Green Card category, also known… Read more »

L-1B Specialized Knowledge Definition Getting Clearer

Recent Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) rulings have helped clarify the specialized knowledge requirement for L-1B Intracompany Transfers. As we have noted at our website, the L non-immigrant work visa category is a very useful tool for international companies needing to bring foreign employees to the United States. In order for the employees of companies located… Read more »

US to UK Settlement Visa Procedure Changes

The UK Border Agency has changed the location for applying for a UK settlement visa from the US. Specifically, for individuals looking to establish permanent residence in the UK, the Home Office’s UK Border Agency has set a new office to receive these settlement visa applications: UK Visas and Immigration, International Operations and Visa, 6… Read more »

Married Same-Sex and Straight Couples Now Treated Equally for Green Cards

The recent U.S. Supreme Court rulings on same-sex marriage mark real progress and raise many questions. Our office – indeed most immigration law offices – have been inundated with questions about the impact of the recent same-sex marriage rulings on family-based immigration.  USCIS has published an excellent FAQ that answers many of the questions that… Read more »