June, 10: It is confirmed that USCIS has finally received enough petitions required to reach the maximum numerical limit of workers who can be issued with a CNMI-Only Transitional Worker i.e. CW-1 Visa for this fiscal year 2018. The fiscal year 2018 cap has not been set as yet, however it is required to have less than 12988 workers for the fiscal year 2017. Subsequent guidance and final receipt date depends on FY 2018. Therefore, it is possible of some petitions not being accepted which are received before May 25, 2017.
If an extension petition is rejected, the beneficiaries stated on the petition will be prohibited to work beyond the validation period of previous petition. It is therefore recommended that the affected beneficiaries and the CW-2 DERIVATIVES OF cw-1 nonimmigrant should leave the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands within 10 days if they do not have any other authorization to stay under the law of US immigration.
Petitions which might be subject to CW-1 cap include the new employment petitions and extensions of stay petitions. All the workers come under the subject cap unless the same worker is already included in the cap of the same fiscal year. The CW-1 employers are encouraged to file a petition for a nonimmigrant worker at least 6 months in advance of the desired employment date. However, it should be clear that a petition can be rejected if it is filed more than 6 months in advance.
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