What is the change? In an amended order, the Bureau of Immigration now allows legal counsel to appear as a corporate representative at the applicant’s interview for the 9(g) Commercial Visa.

What does the change mean? Legal counsel may represent and appear at the 9(g) interview on behalf of a corporation, partnership or sole proprietor so long as they are authorized through a special power of attorney issued by the corporate officer who signed the corporate filings.

  • Implementation timeframe: Immediate.
  • Visas/permits affected: 9(g) Commercial Visas.
  • Who is affected: Companies who want to appoint their legal counsel to appear on their behalf at the 9(g) interview.
  • Impact on processing times: None.
  • Business impact: The amended order eases an earlier rule for corporate sponsors.

Background: The original order was a response to fraudulent 9(g) applications made without the knowledge of corporate sponsors. The original order specifically excluded corporate legal counsel from serving as legitimate representatives for purposes of the 9(g) appearance.

The revised order, Operations Order No. SBM-2014-020A, says that legal counsel for a corporation, partnership or single proprietorship may appear on behalf of the entity, its executive officers or registered owner provided they are authorized through a special power of attorney issued by the officer who signed the Consolidated General Application Form (CGAF) or the board of directors’ resolution or the corporate secretary’s certificate.

BAL Analysis: The revised regulation gives companies more flexibility to fulfill the 9(g) interview requirement.

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