New Hope for Lasting Immigration Reform

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Late last month, the press reported that a bipartisan group of senators had reached agreement on the outline for immigration reform legislation that could provide a lasting solution to multiple long-standing immigration quandaries.

The deal, which would have to clear the House as well, would make border security a priority while enhancing guest worker verification by employers.

It would also provide a path to citizenship for more than 10 million illegal immigrants already in the U.S. today, offering them permanent residence status after a “probationary waiting period.”

Among other things, the senate proposal would:

  • Award green cards to immigrants who obtain advanced degrees from an American university in science, math, technology or engineering (so-called “STEM” disciplines);
  • Create a federal employer verification system to insure that employers do not hire illegal aliens;
  • Allow for employment of more low-skilled, foreign workers when employers can demonstrate inability to recruit U.S. citizens; and
  • Establish a special agricultural worker program for agricultural employers and foreign laborers.

Those who are here illegally could qualify for the “probationary status” while awaiting a chance at permanent resident status, but they would be ineligible for federal benefits, and they would have to apply for permanent residence behind everyone else in line for a green card that is going through legal channels now.

The senators also proposed a more streamlined process for obtaining citizenship, but it would only apply to essential agricultural workers and those who were brought here as children by their parents.

As always, the Law Office of Ronald Shapiro, Esq. stands ready to serve those in need of immigration assistance. Please call us at (847)564-0712 to speak with an experienced and qualified immigration attorney and/or check out our immigration law Website for more information about how we might assist you.