DuPage County Immigration Attorneys | Mevorah & Giglio Law Offices
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Mevorah & Giglio Law Offices
630-932-9100
DuPage County Attorneys

LOMBARD

900 E. Roosevelt Road, Lombard, IL 60148

Phone: 630-932-9100

BLOOMINGDALE

134 N. Bloomingdale Road, Bloomingdale, IL 60108

Phone: 630-529-4761

CHICAGO

105 W. Madison Street, Suite 2200, Chicago, IL 60602

Phone: 630-932-9100

NAPERVILLE

1730 Park Street, Suite 202, Naperville, IL 60563

Phone: 630-420-1000

Immigration

Illinois immigration attorneyMuch of the conversation and public perception surrounding immigration in the United States is centered on the effects that it may have on the economy, with proponents of stronger borders frequently arguing that immigrants may take job opportunities from American citizens or become reliant on government resources for support. However, a number of studies in recent years present compelling counterpoints to these claims by showing the positive impact that immigrants can have on the national economy. Such research could prove promising for businesses seeking to hire immigrants, as well as individuals seeking to enter the U.S. for employment purposes.

Effects on Growth and Productivity in the Labor Force

Evidence suggests that growth in the size of the native-born labor force in the U.S. is stagnating, in large part due to declining birth rates and the aging of the sizable Baby Boomer generation. Economists argue that immigration can promote consistent growth and fulfill an important role in the workforce, especially in certain areas and industries. U.S. Census data shows that immigrants were the primary driving force of rural population growth over the last decade, and that immigrants make up at least 25 percent of the labor force in occupations ranging from farming and fishing, to maintenance, to food and apparel manufacturing.

Research also suggests that when immigrants fulfill important labor needs, businesses and local economies are often more productive, allowing them to grow and create more job opportunities for everyone in the area. In addition to the growth driven by immigrants without college degrees, economists argue that skilled immigrant workers in STEM fields have significantly boosted the U.S. economy over the last several decades, perhaps in part because of the diversity of ideas that they bring.

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Illinois immigration lawyersThroughout the COVID-19 pandemic, those seeking entry to the United States as immigrants and nonimmigrants have faced an additional layer of challenges due to executive proclamations restricting travel in the interest of public health. President Biden has relaxed restrictions somewhat, and as vaccines become more widely available and the spread of the virus slows, more restrictions may be lifted. However, for the time being, certain restrictions continue to remain in effect.

Suspended Entry for Nonimmigrant Visas

Since June 24, 2020, Executive Proclamation 10052 has prevented entry to the U.S. by any non-citizen using certain types of non-immigrant visas. This includes:

  • H-1B visas for temporary employees with specialized occupational knowledge or skills
  • H-2B visas for seasonal or intermittent laborers
  • J visas for interns, teachers, au pairs, and certain others seeking participation in a cultural exchange program
  • L visas for employees of international companies seeking to work temporarily at a U.S. branch
  • Visas for spouses or children of any of the above nonimmigrants

Most recently, this suspension has been extended through March 31, 2021, meaning that it could expire in the very near future if no further executive action is taken to extend it.

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Illinois immigration attorneysFor many years, immigrants seeking admission to the United States or an adjustment of status have needed to demonstrate that they will be self-sufficient, or in other words, that they will not be a “public charge” reliant on tax-funded public benefits. This issue has been under much debate over the last two years, with the Trump administration’s Public Charge Ground of Inadmissibility final rule taking effect in February 2020 and subsequently being challenged multiple times in federal courts.

Most recently, the question of the public charge rule’s constitutionality is being taken up by the U.S. Supreme Court. However, at least for the time being, the rule remains in effect and can have significant implications on visa and green card proceedings. Further complicating matters is the COVID-19 pandemic and its potential effects on immigrants’ health and employment. As such, it is important for immigrants to work with an attorney who can help them understand how the public charge rule may affect their case.

When is an Immigrant Considered to Be a Public Charge?

When an immigrant applies for admission to the U.S., extension of their stay, or adjustment of their status to lawful permanent residence, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) considers a variety of factors to determine whether or not the immigrant is likely to rely on public benefits. Some of the most important factors include the person’s age, health, financial resources, education and skills, and family status.

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Illinois immigration lawyersPresident Biden has signified since the first day of his presidency that immigration reform will be a high priority for his administration. The president has signed several executive orders and submitted a bill to Congress known as the U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021 that includes a pathway to citizenship for millions of undocumented immigrants currently residing in the United States. On February 18, this bill was formally introduced in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. While passage of the bill is far from assured, its effects will be far-reaching if it is passed.

Implications for Undocumented Immigrants

If passed, the bill would allow undocumented immigrants who have been present in the U.S. starting on or before January 1, 2021 to apply for lawful prospective immigrant status. In order to qualify, applicants would need to pass a background check and pay necessary taxes and fees. Once granted, the status would last for up to six years, and could be renewed for additional terms. 

Lawful prospective immigrants who maintain their status and continuous residence in the U.S. for at least five years would also be able to apply for an adjustment of status to obtain a green card and become a lawful permanent resident. After three years as a lawful permanent resident in good standing, they could then apply for naturalized U.S. citizenship following the procedure currently in place, including an interview and an English language and civics test. The bill also proposes increased funding for programs that help immigrants who want to achieve citizenship.

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Illinois immigration attorneysOn February 2, President Biden continued his executive action on immigration by signing three new executive orders, including one that addresses processing and eligibility criteria for those seeking asylum in the United States.. The order is part of what the Biden administration describes as a more compassionate and humane approach to the immigration system. It is important to understand the implications this order may have if you or a family member is seeking asylum to remain lawfully in the United States.

Changes to U.S. Asylum Policy

In large part, the president’s new executive order deals with the processing of asylum seekers at the Mexican border. The order provides for the review, termination, or revocation of several executive actions and policies instituted by the Trump administration. Perhaps most notably, it includes a direction to review and stop enrollment in the Migrant Protections Protocols program, which requires asylum seekers to remain in Mexico while their case is processed. The order also states that health and safety concerns, including those related to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, should be considered when processing asylum claims.

Additionally, the order directs that within the next year, there will be a comprehensive review of regulations regarding cases in which a person is seeking asylum to escape domestic or gang violence, as well as cases in which a person is seeking asylum to escape persecution related to their membership in a particular social group.

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Whether you are going through a divorce, injured in an accident, need to file a workers' compensation claim, charged with a crime, immigrating to the United States, or need to file for bankruptcy, Mevorah & Giglio Law Offices can help. Our trial lawyers have over 40 years of experience helping clients throughout Northern Illinois from four offices in Lombard, Bloomindale, Naperville, St. Charles, and Chicago.

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