In Fogo De Chao v. DHS, the Appellate Court reversed the USCIS’ decision to deny an L-1B petition and held that the knowledge a person gains as a result of his or her upbringing, family, community traditions and native culture can be considered “specialized knowledge” in determining whether a person qualifies for L-1B status. In this case, the employer, Fogo, filed a petition on behalf of a Brazilian churrasquero, a restaurant employee with specialized knowledge in Brazilian food preparation. He gained this specialized knowledge as a result of his upbringing and unique work experience in Brazil.
USCIS determined that the beneficiary’s authentic culinary skills and knowledge gained through his life experiences were not “specialized knowledge” of the company’s product. The appellate court disagreed and held that nothing in the statute precludes culturally acquired knowledge from being taken into account as “specialized knowledge” for L-1B visa consideration. This decision broadens the options for L-1B specialized knowledge advocacy.To read the decision, please visit here.