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DHS announces to launch Known Employer Pilot Program

On March 3, 2016 the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) announced to launch the Known Employer Pilot Program (“KEPP) to assess a way to streamline the process for employers seeking to hire workers through employment-based visa categories.

The Pilot Program allows the U.S. employers to request from USCIS to review and predetermine whether the prospective employers satisfies certain eligibility requirements for the select visa classifications before petitioning or applying for individual employees.

The aims of the KEPP are to reduce the amount of paperwork filed by employers, promote consistency in the adjudication of employment-based petitions and applications, streamline the adjudicative process to achieve greater efficiency within USCIS, provide greater support to U.S. Customs and Border Protection and U.S. Department of State, leading to greater efficiency and consistency at ports of entry and consular posts.

Two employment-based immigrants classifications (EB-12 and EB-13), and four employment-based nonimmigrants classifications: H-1B, L-1A, L-1B, TN NAFTA are included in Known Employer pilot.

After completing the pilot, DHS plans to announce the results and seek to institute a permanent program open to eligible employers if the project will be successful.

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