The new USCIS policy, effective Sept. 11, 2018, grants immigration officials the ability to deny a visa, a green card application, petition or request without issuing a Request for Evidence (RFE) and gives adjudicators almost full discretion to make complex judgments without either clear standards or proper oversight to safeguard against unequal treatment.
What this means is that USCIS officers who have questions about a case or see a technical issue can flatly deny the petition instead of giving applicants and/or petitioners an opportunity to correct clerical errors thus denying the U.S. employers and attorneys the right to address concerns.
The new policy still reserves the right for the USCIS official to issue an RFE, but will they? Perhaps, in some cases.
Yet, last year’s policy hiatus signals that denials will rise, even in the cases that would eventually be approved given the opportunity to rectify concerns or submit additional evidence.
Removing opportunities for RFEs could be devastating to American employers who use legal processes to file visa petitions on behalf of the foreign nationals whom they wish to employ or extend the employment.
These attacks on U.S. employers to deny their right to hire the people they need to succeed will hurt us economically. More jobs will be off-shored and more bright minds will be lost to our competitors.