Immigration – Now More Than Ever mencheroadmin
By Laura M. Menchero
Immigration – Now More Than Ever
Now more than ever it is time to take action.
Without any legislative changes by Congress, the Trump administration has made significant changes to our immigration laws through Executive Orders, which have created an environment determined to curtail legal immigration into this great nation, founded by and for immigrants.
The presidential Executive Orders Buy American, Hire American and Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States have served as the impetus for new restrictive policies, which have been expressed in various implementing policy memoranda issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which includes the USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services), CBP (U.S. Customs and Border Protection) and ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement).
These new policy changes include:
♦ Eliminating the deference to prior petition approvals, making it easier for USCIS to issue extension denials, even if there has been no change in the petitioning employer or the beneficiary’s terms of employment;
♦ Routinely issuing requests for evidence (RFE’s), by which USCIS requests additional evidence after an application or petition is filed, often requesting evidence that has little bearing on the actual statutory and/or regulatory eligibility requirements;
♦ Replacing the routine issuance of RFE’s with another, newer policy announced July 13, 2018, which grants the USCIS adjudicators full discretion to deny petitions and applications without first issuing an RFE;
♦ Requesting documents during residency interviews (or in RFE’s) that are not relevant to the immigration benefit being sought, apparently to obtain documents related to the grant of prior immigration benefits for purposes of verifying whether previously granted benefits were properly granted;
♦ Requiring in-person interviews in employment-based residency cases; and
♦ Requiring USCIS adjudicators to issue Notices to Appear (NTA), the charging document that starts immigration court proceedings, in an expanded category of cases.
These and other restrictive new policies and standards appear to be an effort by the present administration to do indirectly what it has been unable or unwilling to do directly.
Rather than going to Congress, our legislative branch, to enact more restrictive immigration laws, Executive Orders were issued, which became the basis of DHS agency memoranda announcing new, restrictive policies that changed the adjudication standards.
The U.S. remains a country of laws. Do not be afraid to seek the immigration law benefits for which you, your family, or your businesses are eligible.
Increased scrutiny in adjudicating cases may make approvals harder, which just makes your choice of attorney even more important. Presenting a well-prepared, researched, and properly documented case is the answer to these new, restrictive immigration policies.
To do nothing simply achieves the apparent intent and effect of these new policies, which is to instill fear and restrict legal immigration.
Ultimately, it will be zealous, aggressive lawyering and litigation in the courts that will put the brakes on these new restrictive policies and standards, which are being implemented outside the regular legislative or regulatory channels.
Now is the time to act!
Now is the time, now more than ever, to act, to keep on immigrating!