Thursday, August 20, 2009

Important Information about cases pending at Vermont Service Center!

VSC has announced that it prepared, but erroneously did not send, about 1000 Requests for Evidence (RFE). As a result, approximately 300 of these cases were denied on the basis of abandonment. This means that the RFE response date was docketed at USCIS and, when missed, the cases were denied. The VSC indicates that it will administratively reopen the denied cases and all RFEs will be properly sent out. The VSC believes that this problem was limited to June 4, 2009. On cases where a Motion to Reopen was already filed, the USCIS will issue refunds for the filing fee. If you have a case where the online system indicates an RFE sent on June 4, 2009, then you do not need to file a Motion to Reeopen if the case was then denied due to abandonment. If you have such a case and do not hear timely about the reopening of the case and also receive the anticipated RFE, please contact me for assistance.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

STEM Extension Fields

Below is a list of STEM degree fields for purposes of F-1 OPT STEM extensions. This is being supplied as a reference tool in conjunction to my Legal Guide on STEM Extensions. Please contact me if you'd like to view the guide.

The F-1 student's degree must be a Bachelors, Masters, or Doctorate degree with a degree code contained on the STEM Designated Degree Program List. Most of the degree fields below are umbrella fields, with specific degree programs contained within. It is important that you check with an immigration attorney to be sure that the specific degree program is on the list.

  • Actuarial Science (NCES CIP Code 52.1304)
  • Computer Science (NCES CIP Codes 11.xxxx (except for Data Entry Microcomputer Applications, NCES CIP Codes 11.06xx)
  • Engineering (NCES CIP Codes 14.xxxx)
  • Engineering Technologies (NCES CIP Codes 15.xxxx)
  • Biological and Biomedical Sciences (NCES CIP Codes 26.xxxx)
  • Mathematics and Statistics (NCES CIP Codes 27.xxxx)
  • Military Technologies (NCES CIP Code 29.xxxx)
  • Physical Sciences (NCES CIP Codes 40.xxxx)
  • Science Technologies (NCES CIP Codes (41.xxxx)
  • Medical Scientist (MS, PhD) (NCES CIP Code 51.1401)