The United States immigration system, processes, laws, and sociopolitical standpoints are constantly changing. To get a quick grasp on some of the most important recent stories out of the world of immigration, Panteva Law Group LLC has put together this helpful July 2019 immigration newsletter.
Rapid Removal Processes Promised by Trump Administration
President Trump announced this month his intention to fast-track the deportation of up to “one million” undocumented immigrants who have been in the country for less than two years. Undocumented immigrants stopped by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents who are eligible for the expedited removal process will not be automatically granted a hearing before an immigration judge. ICE has announced it intends to use this process only on people who are not seeking asylum and who do not have any pending immigration case.
The Trump Administration claimed the expedited removal process is necessary due to the large number of undocumented immigrants either at the U.S.-Mexico border or already in ICE detainment facilities. Although, the rapid removal process can be used anywhere in the country, not just near borders.
Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act
In an interesting move that could benefit many immigrants who want to enter the United States for employment, the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019 (FHSIA) was passed in the House of Representatives this month. FHSIA removes green card caps that apply to each country individually. Previously, foreign workers from one single country could not receive more than 7% of all available green cards issued that year. Now, any country can receive any percentage of all available green cards, which might create a “first come, first serve” basis.
The purpose of FHSIA is to help grow companies that heavily rely on skilled foreign labor, like is common in the tech industry. It is anticipated that India will benefit the most from this change, as the country routinely hits its green card cap for foreign workers near-immediately after enrollment periods open.
EB-5 Immigrant Investor Rule Changes
For the first time in 25 years, the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program has been changed significantly. Starting in late November 2019, the new changes made this month will go into effect.
Some of the most important changes made to the EB-5 program include:
- Targeted employment area (TEA) designations updated and capable of being managed by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
- Minimum investment amount raised from $1 million to $1.8 million, with automatic inflation adjustments made every 5 years.
- Increased USCIS and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) control of TEA designations to reduce gerrymandering, or intentional rezoning to “connect” a low-income community to a commercial project despite no actual connection existing.
- Updated rules to require certain family members of an investor to file independently to remove or change the current conditions of their residency.
- EB-5 petitioners may be able to keep their current or previous priority dates when refiling an updated or renewed EB-5 petition.
The purpose of the EB-5 program is allowing foreign investors to stay permanently in the United States if they invest significantly in a “commercial enterprise” that creates at least 10 permanent full-time jobs for American employees. Or, lawful permanent residency can be granted if the investor’s contributions help at least 10 full-time jobs remain, resisting dissolution due to company downsizing or collapse.
For more information about immigration news, or for help with an immigration case of your own, you can contact Panteva Law Group LLC in Chicago by dialing (312) 471-0014 and requesting a case review.