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Ware Immigration Blog

Is US immigration law too restrictive when it comes to workers?

Modern economists seem to agree on one thing -- immigration boosts the economy. This is in stark contrast to how most lawmakers view the matter, as many claim that they must place limits on employment immigration to prevent too many immigrants from filling positions that could otherwise go to U.S. citizens. However, a few key factors point make it clear why the current restrictive U.S. immigration law may not be the best thing for the Louisiana economy.

Although it may be hard to believe, there is a labor shortage in the United States. Couple this with approximately 2.4 million new jobs over the last year and there are bound to be problems. But why can companies not fill these some of these positions? In short, American workers are aging. The United States is set to make national history in 2035, when the number of people over 65 is predicted to outnumber those younger than 18.

Is employment immigration right for you?

Employment-based immigration is a popular choice for many people hoping to make the United States their permanent home. Although Louisiana is almost certainly always in need of skilled workers, there are a limited number of spaces for this process. Nationwide, only 140,000 people can utilize employment immigration every year, which may leave you understandably worried about your options. 

To become a permanent resident through employment, your future employer needs to reach out to the U.S. Department of Labor to obtain a labor certification. Your employer will also do the petitioning with immigration services. After this, you will need to seek the status of Lawful Permanent Resident with the immigration service. Depending on your situation, you may also apply for an adjustment of your status to obtain a green card. 

Nonprofit aims to ease path to citizenship

For green card holders in the United States, one of the questions they regularly ask themselves is, "What's next?" The answer can feel overwhelming. Seeking citizenship is a long process that often appears too big of a hurdle to pass for some Louisiana immigrants, but one group is hoping to change this outlook. A nonprofit is now offering grants for those seeking naturalization.

There are many benefits to becoming a citizen of the United States. From voting rights to a greater sense of inclusion and community, U.S. citizenship offers so much. The National Partnership for New Americans wants to make the incentives for citizenship even better. The nonprofit group plans to provide a $5 million cash pot to help cities that match grants for immigrants.

Administration: Domestic, gang violence don't justify asylum

"Asylum was never meant to alleviate all problems -- even all serious problems -- that people face every day all over the world," said Attorney General Jeff Sessions in a recent speech. He has personally ruled that immigration courts can no longer grant U.S. asylum based on an applicant's fear of personal violence by gangs or domestic partners.

The ruling was achieved through the unusual level of authority over immigration courts that has been granted to the U.S. attorney general. Unlike most courts in the United States, immigration courts are administrative courts created under the auspices of the Department of Justice. As head of the DOJ, the attorney general has nearly unlimited authority over how they operate.

What are my rights under US permanent residency?

Immigrant rights are hotly discussed topic that does not always include factual information. Many immigrants in Louisiana struggle to separate fact from fiction, and remain unaware of their rights and protections. For those living in America under U.S. permanent residency, understanding those rights is essential to living full and productive lives.

Permanent residents may work lawfully in the United States and can be employed in any job that suits their skills and qualifications, with the exception of positions that require citizenship due to security. Residents are also protected by the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which means that they cannot be discriminated against because of their ethnicity, race or national origin. This protection helps alleviate the stress that some immigrants experience when seeking employment.

DHS moves to end international entrepreneur rule

In 2017, an immigration rule was created to allow international entrepreneurs to live and work in the U.S. for up to five years in order to create start-up businesses. Now, that rule appears to be on its way out. The "international entrepreneur rule" was created during the Obama administration but was set to go into effect during the Trump administration. Last year, however, the Department of Homeland Security put the rule on hold while indicating it planned to rescind the rule and prevent the program from going into effect.

Due to intervention by a federal court, however, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has been ordered to accept applications from entrepreneurs while it attempts to end the program legally. A spokesperson said that the agency has received about 12 applications but hasn't finalized any decisions on them. The National Venture Capital Association, a trade group, has asked a court to determine if the USCIS is deliberately circumventing the prior court ruling by intentionally failing to take action on the applications.

US marriage nearly 2 years ago? Remove your green card conditions

If you married a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, your green card status may be conditional. This occurs whenever your lawful permanent residence status depends on a marriage that was less than two years old when that status was received.

If your green card status is conditional, it is absolutely critical that you apply to have the conditions removed before your second anniversary. If you fail to apply during the 90 days leading up to your second anniversary, you could be slated for deportation.

Supreme Court's sports betting ruling could help sanctuary cities

The U.S. Supreme Court recently ruled that Congress cannot force states to enforce federal law. Therefore, the majority of the court reasoned, Congress cannot forbid states from authorizing sports gambling within their borders. The power of states to legislate independent from federal government dictates was found to be covered by the 10th Amendment.

The 10th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution states that "the powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people." In their ruling, the justices found legislative independence to be a power reserved for the states.

Participation jumps in Optional Practical Training student jobs

There is good news for colleges and universities suffering from falling international enrollment. A temporary jobs program that makes U.S. education even more desirable has been growing.

The Pew Research Center has documented a big jump in the number of foreign students participating in the Optional Practical Training program, which allows them to stay in the U.S. for temporary employment after they graduate. Between 2004 and 2016, participation grew dramatically from 45,000 to 172,000. That's an increase of nearly 400 percent. This has been the result of significant hiring of science and engineering talent by U.S. tech firms.

Asylum-seekers caravan arrives at border, faces barriers to entry

Immigrants can seek asylum in the U.S. if they have experienced, or if they have a reasonable fear of, persecution based on race, nationality, religion, political opinion or membership in a particular social group. It is entirely legal for people to seek asylum at any U.S. border crossing.

Therefore, it came as a bit of a surprise last weekend when the border crossing at San Ysidro, California, announced that it had "reached capacity" and could not begin processing the so-called "caravan" of asylum seekers who had traveled through Mexico to reach the U.S. border.