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rapeublique

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #20 on: September 28, 2006, 11:28:23 AM »
Indeed c o n d y! Germany has no sodomy laws, the age of sexual consent is 14 for all. Germany allows same-sex couples to register their partnerships; grants German resident status to foreign partners; extends to gay and lesbian co-parents some parental rights with respect to their partners' biological children; gives couples status identical to married couples for purposes of tenancy, inheritance, pensions, and health insurance; and requires a formal legal process for dissolution of partnerships, and provision for one partner to collect support from the other afterwards if necessary. Germany allows homosexuals in its military (although not as officers). Hamburg offers a domestic partner registry for same-sex couples, it allows hospital visitation rights, and federally subsidized low-rent housing to registered partners. Christina Schenk and Volker Beck both are openly homosexual members of the German Bundestag (Lower House of Parliament) Klaus Wowereit (Social Democrat), Mayor of Berlin, was openly gay. On July 2002 Germany's high court upheld a law that gives same-sex couples some marriage like benefits. Judges at the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe voted 5-3 to back the law, which was challenged last year by Bavaria and two eastern states. The court rejected a lawsuit by conservatives who argued gay marriage violates constitutional provisions protecting marriage and the family. The law, in effect since August, allows same-sex couples to "marry" at registry offices and requires a court decision for divorce. Same-sex couples also receive rights given to heterosexual couples in areas such as inheritance and health insurance. The legislation brought Germany in line with countries such as Denmark, which was the first to grant rights to same-sex couples in 1989, France and Sweden.

ha

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #21 on: September 30, 2006, 08:44:22 AM »
"Marriage-Minded GWM/GAM couple
(1 American, 1 foreign),
seeks lesbian couple (1 American, 1 foreign)
for marriages of mutual interests."

Classified Ad, The Washington Blade
--------------------------------------------------

"European/American lesbian couple
seeking foreign/American gay male couple
for mutually beneficial arrangement.
Must be willing to move to New York."

Classified Ad, San Francisco Bay Times
--------------------------------------------------

Advertisements like those above appear every week in gay and lesbian newspapers all across the country. For many binational gay and lesbian couples, arranging mutually beneficial "sham" marriages is a last desperate attempt to make a life together in America. Even though the consequences can be severe if they are caught, current American immigration law often leaves binational same-sex couples feeling that they have no other option. Under the family reunification provisions of the immigration laws, gay and lesbian Americans in relationships with foreign nationals have no legal way to bring their partners into the United States. The foreign partner would have to qualify independently, usually by demonstrating some special skill that is needed by employers in the United States. This is very difficult to do, as many people lack the specific skills sought by the Immigration. Even if they possess these skills, they would still be subjected to the strict quota limits on legal immigration. U.S. immigration law would also tear apart a foreign same-sex couple if one of them were to get a job in the United States. Under current law, the spouse of a married heterosexual person would be permitted into the country, but the partner of a gay man or lesbian would have to be left behind.

Today the United States is the only industrialized English-speaking country that does not grant same-sex partners immigration preferences. Legalizing same-sex marriages in the United States would eliminate the immigration hurdle facing binational same-sex couples, but there are other mechanisms through which this goal could be achieved. Indeed, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the UK now all recognize the immigration rights of same-sex couples and some allow gay marriage too. The US should not stand alone among the industrialized English-speaking world in continuing this discriminatory practice against gay and lesbian families. Congress should require the Immigration Service to establish a registry for same-sex couples so they may immigrate together as a family. As examples of how this might work, Congress could look to the policies enacted by the countries discussed above, or to the domestic partner ordinances enacted in numerous municipalities throughout the US.

erox

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #22 on: October 01, 2006, 08:44:12 PM »
There are ways to get your permanent residency through H1 status. Another way to work here is to find work with an American firm in London or wherever (there are plenty who have offices around the world), then have them transfer you to the states. I forget what that type of visa is called, but you can look it up on www.uscis.gov.

re: the gay marriage/immigration thing....I found this out while working in immigration and thought it was hilarious...basically, if a person transitions to another gender (m to f, f to M, whatever) the person is recognized as that gender in almost every state, can get a new birth certificate, and can get married to someone of the opposite sex, petition for them, etc. HOWEVER, Texas refuses to recognize a person's new gender, and you can only get married to someone of the opposite sex as your birth sex in that state, which basically means that "gay marriage" is legal in those cases. Basically what this means is that Texas is the only state where a female who transitioned to male gender can marry another man and petition for him. heh heh.

GULC 1L
JD/MPP (Int'l Policy and Development)

bdlght

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #23 on: October 05, 2006, 05:49:22 AM »

Today the United States is the only industrialized English-speaking country that does not grant same-sex partners immigration preferences. Legalizing same-sex marriages in the United States would eliminate the immigration hurdle facing binational same-sex couples, but there are other mechanisms through which this goal could be achieved. Indeed, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the UK now all recognize the immigration rights of same-sex couples and some allow gay marriage too.


All these countries recognize gay/lesbian couples for the purposes of immigration:


- Australia
- Belgium
- Canada
- Denmark
- Finland
- France
- Germany
- Iceland
- Israel
- Netherlands
- New Zealand
- Norway
- South Africa
- Sweden
- United Kingdom

slimshady

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #24 on: October 12, 2006, 01:12:54 AM »
Seeing those teary-eyed immigrants gratefully saying the Pledge of Allegiance, I used to wonder why anyone would want to be called an American, What does America stand for? I used to think that it stood for opportunity, equality and justice. The older I get I think that America stands for greed, arrogance and hypocrisy. When I went to Australia last year I was amazed by what people told me they thought about America. The younger people dreamed of going to Los Angeles or New York, imaging them as places filled with excitement and glamour. The older people thought of America as the world's cop and the biggest bully there ever was. They felt that America was like Rome in the days before it fell, full of criminals, festering in garbage. Most people I have met think of America as being number 1, yet I don't really know what the contest was. Certainly we are a leader in the amount of homicides, and the number of guns. We make the most movies and television shows, but not necessarily the best. We smoke the most pot, snort the most lines, mainline the most smack, while hypocritically denouncing drug producing countries. Odds are good that our government may even have been involved in dealing and importing drugs.

What is the history of America? The original settlers slaughtered the Indians, enslaved the Africans and plundered the continent. We loudly criticize other countries for their human rights violations while just 30 years ago our police allowed German Shepherds to attack unarmed protesters. Some years ago the world watched in horror as a crowd of white police officers kicked the crap out of an unarmed black man, and then were found to be guilty of nothing. So why do some people want so much to be a part of it, while many others start to sound like the youth in Germany, "America for Americans." I think that being American is a state of mind, not necessarily the words on your passport. I think the problem, especially for the 'patriotic' types, is in priority. What we define ourselves as being reflects how we see other people. These people see themselves as Americans first, perhaps men second, perhaps fathers third, and farmers fourth. The politically active might set up a different set of identity. They might be gay first, vegetarian second, Texan third, and cabinet-maker fourth. This method of defining ourselves and what we believe to be right is exclusionary, since by definition there can never be a tie among these priorities. When we call ourselves Mexican Americans, it says to the Americans, that the Mexican part is first, and for them it is an insult. If you live in America and you want to be an American, that is what you are first and foremost.

We pledge allegiance to the flag, God and country. It may be related to the Communist witch hunts of the McCarthy era, when there were questions of loyalty. Does it make you an American to join the military and legally execute strangers? Does it make you American to pay taxes and keep a flag in the front yard? I don't think it should make a difference. I think that if we all just considered ourselves human first, everything else being entirely secondary, we might just be better off. We might all see each other as part of the group, part of a vast collective, existing equally within the whole. This does not mean that we need to give up our individuality or identity, quite the contrary. We give up our petty allegiances to transitory memberships, and accept our small place on this small planet, in this short time. When we align ourselves within any group, it is impossible for the will of the group to accurately and thoroughly speak for us. It is this desire, perhaps related to childhood desires for acceptance, perhaps an unconscious desire to be removed from the difficult tasks of decision-making, that allows us to give up that part of ourselves to the herd. Herding never affords us the safety that we imagine, more safety is to be had in solidarity than herding. It might seem irrelevant to even try to redefine our roles, useless to change minds already programmed to self destruct, carved in stone. Perhaps it is, but I don't say this because it is the way that I am and therefore people should try to emulate me. I believe that people should live by what they believe, and for me there doesn't exist a group that believes everything that I believe.

It is sometimes necessary to define our own reality, but in order to be in some kind of society we need to be in agreement on a few basic things. We cannot even agree to disagree. There is no longer any middle, if there ever was one, between my side and your side, because we like to choose sides. From the minute we are socialized, we are taught to establish cliques, to formulate pecking orders, to dominate or be dominated. It leaves no room for anything else, if you dare to step outside the established order, you are by definition outside. Stripped of your privileges, alone in the wilderness. Or you can establish a new order, outside of the old one, but quickly your instincts resurface and you regress back. Hell, I may be a computer geek, but I am the godd**mn King of the Computer Geeks. I may be a punk rocker, but the rest of you dicks are a bunch of suburban poseurs.

The uniforms may appear different, the suit, the long hair and leather jackets, the tie-dyes and Birkenstocks, but at the heart of it they are uniforms conveying identity and allegiance to the group. The only fringes left are reserved for the walking wounded, the ones so far removed that they are oblivious to anything but the voices in their heads. Instead of trying to rise to new heights, we bury our heads and dig deeper into the muck. It is a luxury to be able to chuck it all, give up on everything. It quite lovely to rely on public transportation, have hot and tasty food and live in a world where everyone we know only a phone call away. There is no judgment to be made, no fingers to point, no blame to be assessed. My rights end where your nose begins, but my responsibilities extend much further. There is a great satisfaction that comes from living well, from treating others as you would treat yourself, and if you are unkind to yourself, than treat others better. Agree to disagree, but attempt to understand. Empathy is more important than sympathy, I can't hate you unless I understand you, and if I understand you I can't hate you. Simple words to live by.

buffomet

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #25 on: October 16, 2006, 01:37:42 AM »

When I went to Australia last year I was amazed by what people told me they thought about America. The younger people dreamed of going to Los Angeles or New York, imaging them as places filled with excitement and glamour. The older people thought of America as the world's cop and the biggest bully there ever was. They felt that America was like Rome in the days before it fell, full of criminals, festering in garbage. Most people I have met think of America as being number 1, yet I don't really know what the contest was.

What is the history of America? The original settlers slaughtered the Indians, enslaved the Africans and plundered the continent. We loudly criticize other countries for their human rights violations while just 30 years ago our police allowed German Shepherds to attack unarmed protesters.

The politically active might set up a different set of identity. They might be gay first, vegetarian second, Texan third, and cabinet-maker fourth. This method of defining ourselves and what we believe to be right is exclusionary, since by definition there can never be a tie among these priorities.

When we align ourselves within any group, it is impossible for the will of the group to accurately and thoroughly speak for us. It is this desire, perhaps related to childhood desires for acceptance, perhaps an unconscious desire to be removed from the difficult tasks of decision-making, that allows us to give up that part of ourselves to the herd. Herding never affords us the safety that we imagine, more safety is to be had in solidarity than herding.

My rights end where your nose begins, but my responsibilities extend much further. There is a great satisfaction that comes from living well, from treating others as you would treat yourself, and if you are unkind to yourself, than treat others better. Agree to disagree, but attempt to understand. Empathy is more important than sympathy, I can't hate you unless I understand you, and if I understand you I can't hate you. Simple words to live by.


Great thoughs! So great that people could just paste them into their signature boxes!

egolaw

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #26 on: November 03, 2006, 10:43:55 PM »

It's all your fault! Always flush down the toilet used condoms. Literally!


I would not have too big of a problem even if you're not joking, but are you really serious when saying this?

gabryponte

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #27 on: November 07, 2006, 09:42:18 PM »

There were an average 40,000 project-tied foreign workers in Germany in 1994, down from 60,000 in 1992 because of scandals that involved German contractors using project-tied agreements as backdoor guest worker programs.


Are these program similar to the H1-B visa in the US?
When nobody cares you have a good heart, you throw it away and strike a deal with Satan.

fiscal

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Don't @ # ! * With The H1-B Thing!
« Reply #28 on: November 13, 2006, 04:30:25 AM »
Skilled Workers -- or Indentured Servants?
 
Once confined to lower rungs of the workforce, abusive treatment of workers on visas is spreading to legions of white-collar employees

In 1998, Mohan Kutty, a Malaysian-born doctor who has practiced medicine in Hudson, Fla., since he immigrated to the U.S. more than 20 years ago, decided to open five clinics in rural Tennessee. To find physicians to take such hard-to-fill posts, he sponsored work visas for 17 doctors from a variety of countries, including India, Pakistan, and Romania. But when they showed up for work, Kutty paid them just half the $80,000 a year he had promised -- and fired several after they hired a lawyer to help them out.

Last fall, a Labor Dept. judge ordered Kutty to pay the doctors a total of $1.04 million in unpaid wages. The clinics have since closed, and some of the doctors have found work at other Tennessee health-care providers. "The violations were serious and pervasive, and there is little evidence of good-faith efforts to comply with the law on the part of Dr. Kutty," the judge said in her ruling. Kutty has appealed the decision, saying the law was unclear, but was unavailable for comment. Through their lawyer, the doctors declined comment.

CAUGHT IN THE CRUNCH. Such stories have become increasingly commonplace these days. Immigrants have long complained about employers who cheat or abuse them and threaten to have them deported if they protest. Generally, the problem has been confined to the lowest rungs of the workforce, such as Mexican farm hands who enter the country illegally. Nowadays, however, the weak economy has sparked an outbreak of abusive treatment among the legions of white-collar employees who flocked to the U.S. on perfectly valid visas during the late-1990s boom. Usually, theirs are cases of employers who don't pay full salary or benefits. Often, like Kutty, the employers are immigrants, too, so they know how the system works.

Indeed, labor law violations involving workers on H1-B visas, which are designed for skilled employees, have jumped more than fivefold since 1998, according to the Labor Dept. Back-pay awards for such employees have soared by more than ten times.

LESS WILLING TO QUIT.  In response, agency officials have stepped up H1-B investigations. They agree there could be thousands of H1-B workers who don't file complaints because they fear the loss of their visa. "We take very seriously this fear about coming to the government to complain," says D. Mark Wilson, deputy head of the Labor Dept.'s Employment Standards Administration, which enforces labor laws.

The spreading problems stem from the stagnant economy, officials say, which is driving some companies to cut costs by unscrupulous means. At the same time, the scarcity of jobs has left many skilled immigrants more dependent on their employers and less willing to quit if trouble starts. The abuses have been particularly widespread in high tech, which used H1-Bs to bring in tens of thousands of programmers and other professionals when companies were desperate for help during the boom. But with the jobless rate among computer scientists and mathematicians at 6%, vs. a mere 0.7% in early 1998, many workers are more vulnerable.

SEARCHING FOR SPONSORS. Experts point out that the U.S. work-visa system gives employers tremendous power over immigrants. More than a million people are employed in the U.S. under visas for skilled workers. While the rules for each visa type differ, all require immigrants to get a U.S. employer to sponsor them. So if employers yank their sponsorship -- which they can do for almost any reason imaginable -- the immigrant often must return home and try to find another sponsor -- an arduous task. "They don't have the usual rights that U.S. workers have," says Eileen Appelbaum, a professor of labor economics at Rutgers University. "You're essentially an indentured servant."

That's pretty much how Ekambar Rao Kodali felt when he ran into problems with his job as a systems analyst. The Hyderabad (India) native felt lucky to score an H1-B visa in 1997 that allowed him to move to the U.S. and work for Atlanta-based Softpros Inc. The high-tech consulting firm paid him $4,400 a month, but by the time the economy soured in 2001, his paychecks had already started to come in late, and Softpros didn't keep up its payments on his health insurance, Kodali says. He finally quit in frustration late that year but was forced to move back to India with his wife and three-year-old when the job he had been offered at another company fell through.

"YOU'RE GOING BACK."  In February, Kodali returned to the U.S. after finding work with yet another high-tech consultancy. But the new position -- and his H1-B visa -- expire at the end of the year. He left his family in India, where he will have to return unless something else turns up. "I worked for [Softpros CEO Chand Akkineni] as hard as possible, but he took advantage of me," says Kodali. Akkineni, also a Hyderabad native, concedes that he sent out paychecks late, but he denies that he failed to keep up insurance payments. An H1-B worker's options are few. For example, federal law prohibits employers from forcing H1-B workers to take unpaid leave, yet experts say the practice has become widespread. "You're told, 'If you don't want to do it, fine. You're going back,"' says John W. Steadman, president-elect of the Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers. Vigorous law enforcement would help, but until the job market improves, skilled immigrants will remain at the mercy of their sponsors.

This story originally appeared in the June 16, 2003 issue of BusinessWeek

wrw

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Re: practicing law as a non-U.S. citizen
« Reply #29 on: April 09, 2007, 12:35:58 AM »
I have been admitted by a great program -- the thing is that I need a student visa and I was told I may face difficulties to get it given the fact that a family member of mine has already filed a petition to get me a green card (immigration considers it proof of intent to remain in the U.S.) Do I go back to my native country to apply for the student visa as per the standard procedure, or do I apply for the visa from within the U.S., no matter what? Also, will it make a difference that I have been accepted at a well-known, brand name school?