The State of U.S. Immigration: Current News & Updates

Since the President took office, the Trump administration has made several attempts to heavily restrict immigration. They have recently strengthened their efforts, using the coronavirus to release executive orders and virtually halt the immigration process for many applicants. Fortunately, various local courts, immigrant advocacy groups, and other institutions are fighting back, and many of the administration’s attempts have failed.

At Milla & Associates, LLC, our job is not just to help you navigate the immigration process but to stay abreast of any changes that may affect your case. As such, we have compiled the following updates to give you a comprehensive understanding of the current state of the U.S. immigration system. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us. We can help you develop a plan to overcome these obstacles and handle any issues that arise in the future.

Renewal & Expansion of the Immigration Ban

Trump has extended his 60-day immigration ban, originally issued in April, to last through the end of 2020. Initially, this ban only affected family-based and employment-based immigrant visa applicants—essentially, anyone hoping to obtain a green card from outside the United States.

However, it now restricts many other categories, including these nonimmigrant worker visas:

  • The H-1B visa for specialty workers
  • The H-2B visa for nonagricultural seasonal workers
  • The J visa for exchange students and teachers/counselors
  • The L visa for multinational managerial/executive transferees
  • Spouses and children of the above visa holders

A report by CNN discusses the potential impacts of the ban on both foreign citizens and U.S. employers. Especially in the tech industry, U.S. businesses rely on visas like the H-1B to secure the world’s top talent for hard-to-fill positions. These categories help American businesses compete on a global scale. While the Trump administration says this is what is necessary to ensure American-born citizens are “first in line” for new jobs, opponents of the immigration ban say it will simply hinder our economy’s recovery.

In response to the ban, more than 200 diversity visa lottery winners have filed suit against the Trump administration. They are just a small portion of the 50,000 people who can no longer go through with their immigration process.

Fortunately, the ban identifies several exceptions, and you may still be able to obtain a visa at this time with help from a highly experienced attorney. Schedule a consultation with our team to discuss potential options that can overcome these barriers.

Student Visa Holders & Online Instruction

Many universities have decided to continue all instruction online for the fall of 2020. Student visa holders are typically not permitted to stay in the U.S. based on online instruction, but many expected these international students (of which there are more than 1 million) to benefit from an exception to this restriction due to the pandemic. ICE, however, announced that these students would need to either transfer to a school that is implementing in-person instruction or return to their home countries.

Several institutions (led by Harvard and MIT) filed lawsuits in response to this announcement. Fortunately, the nationwide outrage succeeded, and ICE rescinded the decisionto force international students to leave the country. These students can continue to remain in the U.S. and complete their coursework remotely.

3rd Country Asylum Rule

The Trump administration released a regulation prohibiting individuals from seeking asylum in the U.S. if they passed another country on the way to the U.S. without seeking asylum there first. This regulation would force individuals fleeing violence in Guatemala, for example, to seek asylum in Mexico.

On July 6th, however, a federal appeals court ruled against this regulation. Either the administration will drop the policy entirely or take it to the Supreme Court. Unfortunately, asylum is virtually impossible to obtain at the moment due to border closures attributed to COVID-19.

The State of DACA

The Trump administration’s efforts to end DACA were struck down by the Supreme Court on June 18th. Many expected Trump to renew the effort to end it because the Supreme Court said that Trump simply did not follow proper administrative protocol. But the deadline to file for a rehearing has passed.

Although they haven’t moved to refile paperwork, USCIS hasn’t reinstated the program. In fact, they are still rejecting first-time applications. They are also confirming receipt of some applications but are not moving forward with the process. Officials on both sides of the aisle say that this is an unprecedented violation of the Supreme Court’s order.

Moving Forward with Your Case

With varying levels of success, the Trump administration has made regular efforts to curb lawful immigration. At Milla & Associates, LLC, we will continue to provide updates regarding these efforts and any new challenges that arise. While the President has focused his term largely on targeting, restricting, and even demonizing immigrants, we believe these attempts will continue to be met with fierce protests by the American people.

Let us help you navigate this changing legal terrain. Call (312) 702-1782or contact us onlineto get started on your case right away.