Slight Delay for I-129 TN Visa Petitions

According to USCIS' most recently published processing times for the Vermont Service Center (VSC), the VSC is taking longer than normal in its adjudication of I-129 petitions requesting TN visa status. (The VSC has sole jurisdiction for adjudicating these types of I-129 petitions.) As of the date of its report (May 31, 2015), the VSC was working on TN petitions filed on March 9, 2015, which suggests it is taking almost 3 months to adjudicate these petitions. The VSC normally lists its processing times for I-129 petitions seeking TN status as 2 months.

VSC to Issue RFEs on White Paper

In an email from the Vermont Service Center (VSC) Community Engagement office, dated June 30, 2015, the VSC announced that it will no longer issue its Requests for Evidence (RFEs) on yellow stock paper. As of July 6, 2015, the VSC will now issue its RFEs on white paper.

Individuals may request an extension of TN visa status, change of TN employer, or a change to TN status by filing an I-129 petition with the VSC. (Canadians may also file an I-129 petition with the VSC for an initial TN.)  The VSC will issue an RFE if the petition is lacking any required evidence, or additional evidence is needed to determine an individual’s eligibility for TN visa status.

TN Visa Approval for Geologist

TN VisaCase Info.
Background:Citizen of Canada.
TN Category:Geologist
Job title / duties:Applicant had an engineering job title, but his duties involved analysis of geologic data to assess pipeline integrity hazards, and developing pipeline integrity assessment programs. The main issue here was establishing that the position fell under an eligible TN occupational category. Based on the position’s job duties and the applicant's credentials, I felt that the Geologist TN category was appropriate. As the position’s title was not entirely indicative of this TN category, we included research to establish that Geologists performed this type of work, and may be referred to as Engineering Geologists.
Education:Bachelor's degree in Physical Geography and Earth Science. As the applicant did not possess a degree exactly in the field, we included research showing that a degree in a Geoscience field was suitable for this occupation.
Filing Process:TN visa status application @ USCBP - Calgary, PFI
Processing time:Approved same day filed
Approval period:3 years