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  1. #1
    Senior Member Dixie's Avatar
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    Grassley Questions Immigration Agency About Fraud in H-1B Pr

    Grassley Questions Immigration Agency About Fraud in H-1B Program

    WASHINGTON – Following release of an internal report by Citizenship and Immigration Services outlining serious fraud in the H-1B visa program, Senator Chuck Grassley today sent a letter to the Acting Director of Citizenship and Immigration Services asking for additional details about how the government is enforcing the H-1B visa laws.

    “The results of this report validate exactly what I’ve been fearful of-some employers are bringing H-1B visa holders into our country with complete disregard for the law. More needs to be done to ensure the American worker is our first priority,
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    Senior Member Dixie's Avatar
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    H-1B Benefit Fraud & Compliance Assessment

    U.S. CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION SERVICES
    H-1B Benefit Fraud & Compliance Assessment

    http://grassley.senate.gov/private/uplo ... 0082-2.pdf

    U.S. CITIZENSHIP AND IMMIGRATION SERVICES
    H-1B Benefit Fraud & Compliance Assessment
    September 2008
    1
    BACKGROUND: The Office of Fraud Detection and National Security (FDNS), a Division of the National Security and Records Verification (NSRV) Directorate, drafted this report, in collaboration with the other USCIS Directorates and the USCIS Office of Chief Counsel. All USCIS components reviewed the cases involving fraud or technical violations and the proposed enhancements to the H-1B program and concurred on the report.

    In February 2005, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) developed and implemented the Benefit Fraud Assessment (BFA) Program to evaluate the integrity of various nonimmigrant and immigrant benefit programs that require the adjudication of an application or petition. While conducting these assessments, the entire scope of a program is analyzed for fraud vulnerabilities as well as for customer compliance with program requirements. For this reason, USCIS recently retitled the program the Benefit Fraud and Compliance Assessment (BFCA) Program. Although the name of the program has been changed to reflect the full range of issues reviewed, the methodology used to conduct the assessments has not changed. The applications and petitions reviewed are not selected because they are suspected of fraud, but are a statistically valid random sampling1 of pending and completed cases over a recent six-month period. The results of the BFCA serve as a basis for proposed changes to existing regulations, policies, and procedures, and as warranted, recommended legislative remedies.

    The BFCA involves conducting internal and open source systems queries by FDNS Immigration Officers (IOs) to verify information entered on and submitted in support of applications and petitions as well as domestic site visits and overseas verification to validate claimed relationships, employment, and qualifications. In the case of employment-based petitions, FDNS IOs conduct site visits to verify the existence of the petitioning company and the place of employment and to interview persons who should be familiar with the petition and job offer. FDNS IOs contact Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) counterparts prior to commencing field inquiries to prevent interference with any ICE operations. As a rule, FDNS IOs do not conduct site visits when the petitioner or beneficiary is under criminal investigation.

    In keeping with the joint USCIS/ICE anti-fraud strategy, when a BFCA concludes that the petitioner or beneficiary has committed fraud, FDNS refers the case to ICE for consideration of formal criminal investigation and prosecution.2 ICE then has 60 days to accept the case for investigation or decline it and return it to FDNS. If ICE declines to open a criminal investigation, FDNS forwards the case with its administrative findings to a USCIS adjudications component for denial or revocation of the petition or application, as appropriate. According to current policy, if the beneficiary is in the U.S., he or she is placed in removal proceedings.

    A lookout summarizing the fraud finding is also posted in case the beneficiary does not appear at his or her removal proceeding or attempts to pursue other immigration benefits. The FDNS IO enters the BFCA case into the FDNS Data System (FDNS-DS) so that the information may be tracked and so that known fraud indicators may be compared against incoming receipts in case the petitioner or beneficiary files other applications or petitions.

    1 Since there were no previous estimates of fraud available within the H-1B population, the Department of Homeland Security Office of Immigration Statistics (OIS) recommended a simple random sample for a proportion. The sample design assumed a rate of occurrence not more than 20 percent, a confidence level of 95 percent, and a margin of error of plus or minus 5 percent.

    2 This process is based on procedures established in the February 2006, USCIS/ICE Memorandum of Agreement (MOA). 2


    To understand the findings contained in this assessment of the H-1B program, it is important to understand the following applicable statutory, regulatory, and procedural requirements:

    H-1B NONIMMIGRANT CLASSIFICATION: The I-129 petition is the vehicle used by an employer to petition for an alien to come to the U.S. as an H-1B nonimmigrant worker to perform services in a specialty occupation under section 101(a)(15)(H)(i)(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (the “Act
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  3. #3
    Senior Member millere's Avatar
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    Re: Grassley Questions Immigration Agency About Fraud in H-1

    [quote="Dixie"]
    “The results of this report validate exactly what I’ve been fearful of-some employers are bringing H-1B visa holders into our country with complete disregard for the law. More needs to be done to ensure the American worker is our first priority,

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    Senior Member jp_48504's Avatar
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