20 March 2020
Category News Room
20 March 2020,

Department of State Suspends Routine Visa Services Worldwide

As of March 18, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Department of State (“DOS”) has cancelled all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments. Individuals with an urgent matter and need to travel immediately should follow Embassy guidance to request an emergency appointment. At this time, it is not clear when routine visa appointments will be available again due to global challenges amidst increasing travel restrictions.

The Machine Readable Visa (MRV) fee remains valid. Though nonrefundable, foreign nationals may apply the fee for a future visa appointment in the country where the fee was paid within one year of the date of payment.

Impacted foreign nationals are advised to immediately contact a member of our legal team for guidance regarding how to proceed as the inability to return to the U.S. may have an impact on the maintenance of certain nonimmigrant statuses.


Important COVID-19 Update

We are still working and available, but we need to share this message with all clients:

As the coronavirus situation continues to evolve, Brown Immigration Law is focused on ensuring the health and safety of our employees and their families. At the same time, we remain committed to delivering the same level of service our clients expect and deserve, especially during H-1B Cap Registration and the current disruptions caused by the coronavirus. Please review the below updates:


As of midday March 19th our team has transitioned to primarily remote work during the COVID-19 crisis. We will maintain a smaller group within the office to file case petitions and receive documents at our office location. When sending documents to our office, please provide tracking information so that we can ensure delivery and coordinate with staff members appropriately.


We are suspending all in-office appointments or external meetings at this time. All communication will be conducted by email, phone, text and video conference. Please reach out if you need anything or wish to schedule a meeting.


We will maintain a smaller group within our office to file case petitions and receive documents.

In short, we will continue to serve you as efficiently as we can, but we ask for patience during this time given our at home set-up, the busy-ness of H-1B Cap season, and coronavirus related support we are providing to clients. We will respond, but we may be slightly delayed. Please also know that we successfully completed all Cap subject registrations yesterday and await the lottery results and will report them as soon as we have them – good luck to all participants!

To review our most recent updates please visit www.brownimmigrationlaw.com.


Important Coronavirus Update Webinar

Please join David Brown, Managing Partner of Brown Immigration Law, for guidance on how to best manage the impact of the current pandemic on U.S. immigration issues. This is a planned 45 minute update on all the key compliance issues of concern for employers and their foreign staff created by COVID-19 changes. David has been managing employment-based immigration issues for over 22 years, and although this pandemic is wholly unprecedented, he has worked through other interesting periods in our immigration history that offer guidance for this situation.

As we know, there is new news every hour of every day, and this is an evolving problem that is constantly changing.

David will synthesize the most important immigration topics you are facing as employers and HR today, including:

  • the effects on employees working from home;
  • how travel restrictions apply to foreign nationals (my visa is expiring soon but I do not want to return to a travel-restricted country);
  • how government office closures will impact filing options;
  • the impact of remote instruction at many colleges and universities on student status, and potential issues with graduation delay for OPT (Master Cap filings)

This is just a sample of issues our clients are confronting and that David will discuss. After the initial presentation David will stay for an extended Q&A period to provide as many answers as possible.

If you have specific questions you would like answered, please send us your question in advance to info@brownimmigrationlaw.com.


Once registered, you will receive an email with a link to use to join the video chat on the day of the event. Please note: This link should not be shared with others; it is unique to you. If you ever misplace the invitation link, simply visit the webinar schedule on our website to join the LIVE chat.

If you have contacts or colleagues who may benefit from our talks, you are welcome to invite them to join our VIP invitation list by sharing our webinar schedule where they can subscribe for further information.

Don’t miss these opportunities to increase your knowledge on important immigration issues!

Thank you and we look forward to having you at the event.

Best Regards,

The Team at Brown Immigration Law


** This newsletter/memo is provided for informational and discussion purposes only. It does not act as a substitute for direct legal contact on an individual basis **

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