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07/16/2020 – Firm News

Firm News 7/16/20

UPDATE: Our Manhattan Office and Peekskill Office have officially reopened on Monday, July 6, 2020, and our Brooklyn Office will follow suit in a few weeks. We are available to meet with you in-person, on the phone, or via video conference, using Zoom or Skype. All in-person meetings must be scheduled in advance and must follow our office policies and procedures in wake of COVID-19. Your safety and the safety of our staff remains our top priority. Thank you for your patience.

As we move forward amidst the difficulties created and exacerbated by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, you can remain assured that PPID is here for you. We understand the deleterious impact that this crisis is having on families around the world and so close to home. But, be reminded that even though this is a difficult season, it is just a season – it will pass! To facilitate its passing, we implore you to continue to take the necessary precautionary measures (i.e. social distancing, not touching your face, and washing your hands regularly for 20 seconds). The purpose of this notice is to inform you about:

  1. USCIS and Immigration Matters;
  2. The Current Status of New York State Courts;
  3. The Effect on Personal Injury Cases;
  4. Real Estate & Business Issues;
  5. Criminal Law Matters; and
  6. Employment Law Matters.

 1. USCIS and Immigration Matters

Breaking News: Trump Administration Removes Online-Only Class Restrictions Against F-1 Students
The Trump administration has rescinded its policy that would bar international students who only take online courses from staying in the US, a federal judge announced Tuesday in Boston. As a result, ICE will revert back to guidance issued in March that allowed international students to remain in the U.S. even if their college or university opts for online-only classes during the pandemic. It is a momentous day for more than 1 million international students in the U.S., colleges and universities, and the immigration community.
Suing Immigration in Federal Court may quickly get you desired results!
The lawsuit was filed on July 8 and an outcome was made in less than a week. Federal Litigation is often the most effective way to reverse a bad decision by Immigration. To challenge a denial by USCIS in Federal Court, please call our office at 212-233-8100.

Noticias de Última Hora: La Administración Trump Elimina las Restricciones en las Clases Solo en Línea Contra Estudiantes F-1

Un juez federal anunció el martes en Boston que la administración Trump ha rescindido su política que prohibiría a los estudiantes internacionales que solo toman cursos en línea se queden en los EE. UU. Como resultado, ICE volverá a la orientación emitida en marzo que permitió a los estudiantes internacionales permanecer en los EE. UU. Incluso si su colegio o universidad opta por clases solo en línea durante la pandemia. Es un día trascendental para más de 1 millón de estudiantes internacionales en los colegios y universidades de EE. UU., y la comunidad de inmigración.
¡Demandar a inmigración en un tribunal federal puede obtener los resultados deseados rápidamente!
La demanda se presentó el 8 de julio y se obtuvo un resultado en menos de una semana. El litigio federal es a menudo la forma más efectiva de revertir una mala decisión de inmigración. Para impugnar una denegación del USCIS en un tribunal federal, llame a nuestra oficina al 212-233-8100.

Our Immigration Department understands how important it is for you to get essential information about immigration and other legal news quickly during these turbulent times. As a result, Managing Partner Conrad Pollack “The Maestro” and Partner Nelson Madrid “The Maverick” have joined forces with Partner Adam Handler “The Case Handler” on our daily morning show, Cruising with the Case Handler, with radio personality David Annakie “Squeeze” on Facebook Live and 93.5 FM. The program airs on weekday mornings at 8:30 AM, Saturdays at 7:00 PM, and Sundays at 12:00 PM.

Agency Updates:

  • On Monday, July 20th, 2020, the following Application Support Centers (ASCs) are scheduled to reopen in the NY area: USCIS in Long Island City, Manhattan, Port Chester, Queens/Jamaica, Hauppauge and Bronx. The Brooklyn ASC reopened on July 13th, 2020. USCIS anticipates that applicant appointments will be rescheduled within 90 days.

Visa Bulletin: July 2020
To view the July 2020 Visa Bulletin from the U.S. Department of State, please click here.

17 States and DC Sued Trump Administration Over Visa Rules for College Students
This Monday, July 13, 2020, 17 States and the District of Columbia filed a lawsuit to block a new rule by the Trump administration designed to revoke the visas of foreign students who take all online classes. This rule could force foreign students to return to their home countries amidst the pandemic. As of Tuesday, July 14, this lawsuit is moot.

EOIR Update
Hearings in non-detained cases at immigration courts without announced dates, including NYC immigration courts, are postponed through, and including, July 31, 2020.

Congress Calls to Decrease ICE Detentions as COVID-19 Continues to Spread
The proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2021 has been submitted and includes significant implications for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention facilities. The spending bill calls for a huge decrease from prior fiscal years that could reduce the overall population of people in immigration detention facilities.

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17 Estados y DC Demandaron a la Administración Trump por reglas de visa para estudiantes universitarios
Este lunes 13 de julio de 2020, 17 estados y el Distrito de Columbia presentaron una demanda para bloquear una nueva regla de la administración Trump diseñada para revocar las visas de estudiantes extranjeros que tomen todas las clases en línea. Esta regla podría obligar a los estudiantes extranjeros a regresar a sus países de origen en medio de la pandemia. A partir del martes, 14 de julio, esta demanda es discutible.

Actualización EOIR
Las audiencias en casos no detenidos en tribunales de inmigración sin fechas anunciadas, incluidos los tribunales de inmigración de Nueva York, se posponen hasta el 31 de julio de 2020.

El Congreso Trata de Disminuir las Detenciones de ICE a Medida que COVID-19 Continúa Extendiéndose
El presupuesto propuesto para el año fiscal 2021 se ha presentado e incluye implicaciones significativas para los centros de detención del Servicio de Inmigración y Control de Aduanas (ICE) de EE. UU. El proyecto de ley de gastos exige una gran disminución comparada con los años fiscales anteriores que podría reducir la población general de personas en centros de detención de inmigrantes.

2. Current Status of New York State Courts

New York City entered phase 3 on July 6th.  Although Governor Cuomo extended the provision tolling the Statute of Limitations until August 5th, our Litigation/Appellate Department continues to write motions and appeals as if there is no “pause” and when the stay is lifted we will be ready to “press the button” for you.

Pursuant to an announcement on July 13th by Chief Judge DiFiore, as of July 10th, all courts outside New York City have entered phase 4. In phase 4, Judges and staff are hearing an increased number of in-person matters that are being staggered in order to limit courthouse and courtroom occupancy to safe and manageable levels. On July 13th, Grand Jurors reported for service and are being empaneled in every judicial district outside the City.

New York City Courthouses entered phase 3 on Wednesday, July 8th, marking a modest increase in courthouse staffing levels and matters that may be heard in person including: limited criminal cases, essential family court proceedings, and a limited number of bench trials. Grand Jury proceedings are set to commence in New York City on August 10th.

Due to the recent uptick in Covid-19 cases around the country, the Courts will be extending COVID screening protocols to all judges and nonjudicial personnel effective Wednesday, July 15tt. The screening involves temperature screening upon arrival to the workplace and a daily COVID self-assessment.

A “Commission on the Future of New York Courts” has been formed bringing together experts in the field of law, government, business, technology, and public service to provide guidance on navigating a safe judicial system through this pandemic.

Supreme Courts
The Supreme Court, Kings County, and the Supreme Court, Bronx County, have extended Note of Issue filing deadlines. Various judges have provided the bar with template conference forms to complete to facilitate virtual discovery and conferences. Supreme Court, Nassau County, and Supreme Court, Suffolk County, entered phase 4 on July 10th with new protocols for an “In-Person Operations Plan”, which can be found on the Courts’ website.

The courts continue to allow the filing of new lawsuits in court matters previously classified as “nonessential”. In regions that have reopened, new matters may be filed electronically in those courts that use the NYSCEF e-filing system, and by mail in courts where NYSCEF is unavailable. In regions that have not yet met the benchmarks for reopening, new matters may now be filed electronically in those courts that use the NYSCEF system. Details are set forth in Administrative Order 114 on the Court’s website.

ALL FOUR DEPARTMENTS OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION ARE ACCEPTING FILINGS:

First Department
The Court finished oral arguments on June 26th and is now on summer recess.

Second Department
The Court finished oral arguments on June 30th and is now on summer recess.

The Court issued two amended orders regarding new deadlines for the filing of appeals and regarding the digital filing of motions digitally. Both orders can be found on the Court’s website.

Third Department
The Court finished oral arguments and is now on summer recess.

The Court released an order reinstating and reestablishing briefing deadlines for appeals now due in July, August, and beyond. The new deadlines can be found on the Court’s website.

Fourth Department
The Court finished oral arguments on July 2nd and is now on summer recess.

The Court extended brief deadlines which can be found on the Court’s website. Deadlines for perfecting appeals after May 22, 2020, remain in place.

3. The Effect on Personal Injury Cases

Governor Andrew Cuomo paused the state’s Statutes of Limitation by issuing an executive order. The order suspends “any specific time limit” on the start or filing of legal action notice, motion or “other process or proceeding.” This will mean that if you were in an accident exactly three years ago, you will have some time to file your case due to the pandemic. Be cautioned, the order pausing those rules continues until August 5, 2020.

4. Real Estate & Business Issues

NYC has been in Phase 3 of the re-opening plan since July 6th.  Indoor dining at restaurants in NYC is still postponed.  Businesses permitted to re-open in Phase 3 include personal care services such as tattoo and piercing parlors, appearance enhancement practices, massage therapy practices, spas, cosmetology salons, nail salons, tanning salons, and waxing salons.

All other regions of NYS have entered Phase 4 of re-opening.  Phase 4 is the last phase of NYS’s re-opening plan during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

All businesses and operations which re-open are held are accountable for staying current with any updates to local, state, and federal requirements related to their business or operations and any auxiliary activities and incorporating those changes into their operations.

The guidelines issued by NYS under its Forward Plan are not intended to replace any existing applicable local, state, and federal laws, regulations, and standards.re-opening plan. In Phase 4, the following operations are permitted:

  • Higher Education
  • Pre-K to Grade 12 Schools
  • Low-Risk Outdoor Arts & Entertainment
  • Low-Risk Indoor Arts & Entertainment
  • Media Production
  • Professional Sports Competitions With No Fans
  • Malls

Mandatory 14-day Quarantine:
Based upon Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order 205, issued June 25, 2020, if you have traveled from within one of the designated states with significant community spread, you must quarantine when you enter New York for 14 days from the last travel within such designated state, provided on the date you enter into New York State that such state met the criteria for requiring such quarantine.

The requirements of the travel advisory do not apply to any individual passing through designated states for a limited duration (i.e., less than 24 hours) through the course of travel.

Examples of such brief passage include but are not limited to: stopping at rest stops for vehicles, buses, and/or trains; or lay-overs for air travel, bus travel, or train travel.  Currently, the states which meet the criteria for requiring quarantine in NYS are:

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Arizona
  • California
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Iowa
  • Idaho
  • Kansas
  • Louisiana
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • New Mexico
  • North Carolina
  • Nevada
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Utah
  • Wisconsin

For more information or assistance with any business or real estate matters, contact us at 212-233-8100 EXT. 306 or email at [email protected], and we will connect you to one of our attorneys and legal staff to answer your questions and other legal concerns you may have.

5. Criminal Law Matters

Options for Incarcerated Defendants
If you have a loved one who is incarcerated, it may be possible to obtain an emergency release from incarceration.  Any incarcerated person who is over 50 years old, or is otherwise vulnerable to COVID-19, may be eligible for release if their case does not involve an allegation of substantial violence and there is no history of violence in the last 10 years. In some cases, an incarcerated Defendant who is not eligible for emergency relief may still be able to be released by having their lawyer negotiate a resolution.  The district attorneys have expanded their criteria for offering non-jail plea deals and are even dismissing cases in certain circumstances.

Criminal Courts
Criminal courts have slowly started to re-open, and are scheduling future court dates for the following matters:

• Conferencing of felony cases;
• Selected plea and sentencing proceedings;
• Arraignments of defendants who have been issued desk appearance tickets; and
• Preliminary hearings in cases involving defendants being held in jail on felony complaints.

You should contact your attorney, or retain new counsel if you are able to do so, to make sure you know when your criminal matter will be heard in court.  If you fail to appear for a court date, A WARRANT FOR YOUR ARREST COULD BE ISSUED.

To schedule a free consultation with a criminal defense attorney, call Gregg A. Pinto, Esq. at (646) 328-2434.

6. Employment Law Matters

Many individuals who have worked in the restaurant and other service industries have been laid off due to the virus.  Prior to the layoff, though, these individuals may have been working 40 or more hours per week but not being overtime in compliance with the law.  It is also possible that some of these individuals did receive all of their required tips under the law.  In addition, employers are required to pay a minimum wage to most service employees.  Contact our office for a free consultation to find out if you were not paid in compliance with the law by your former employer.

From all of us at PPID to you, stay safe and healthy.

If you need legal guidance, PPID is here to help! Call us toll-free at (800) 223-2814 

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