Hopes for Immigration Reform Alive in 2014

Well, it’s a new year and House Speaker, John Boehner, seems to have changed his tune and view on immigration reform.  In the first week of the new year, Mr. Boehner hired Rebecca Tallent, a longtime immigration adviser and advocate for immigration reform.  Mr. Boehner’s action sends a strong message that he as leader of the House of Representative is committed to what he calls “step by step” approach to revising the immigration laws.   CLICK HERE to read more.

NYC has Highest Percentage of Immigrants in a Century

The percentage of immigrants in New York City’s population is the highest it’s been in a century, according to a report issued by the city on Wednesday.  More than 3 million of the city’s residents in 2011 were born in another country, out of a population of 8.2 million. That makes immigrants 37.2 percent of New York City dwellers.  CLICK HERE to read more.

Vice President Joe Biden – my immigrant ancestors “didn’t all come here legally”

Vice President Joe Biden said Wednesday that some of his immigrant ancestors came to the United States illegally and said it’s fruitless to compare the immigration system of the 1800s to today’s.

“My great-great-grandparents came escaping the famine, and they didn’t all come here legally,” Biden said in response to a questioner who said her family came to the country legally from Ireland in the 1800s. “They didn’t all come legally. And the existence of the system isn’t all truncated like it is now. I’d check your ancestry to make sure that they did come legally if that’s a concern to you.”  CLICK HERE to read more.

Knock, Knock – It’s Immigration Officers at your door!

During fiscal year 2012, U.S. Department of Homeland Security – Immigration & Custom Enforcement removed or deported 409,849 individuals from the United States.  Unfortunately, many individuals don’t know what to expect if an Immigration Officer comes knocking at their door due to an expired visa/I-94, initiation of removal/deportation proceeding due to commission of a crime, or execution of a final order of removal/deportation.  Also, Immigration can visit your job and detained you at your worksite.  Recently, Immigration has engaged in numerous worksite raids at corporations that hire a large number of immigrants.

So, what are the DO’S and DON’TS if Immigration comes knocking at your door or job?  CLICK HERE to learn more.

For more information, email Gail@GailLaw.com or call 1-877-GAIL-LAW or 407-292-7730 and ask about a FREE consultation.

Child Status Protection Act Help “Aged Out” Children Over Age 21

Many families who have been waiting six to twelve years for their immigrant visas to be available often face the problem of children who “aged out” or turn age 21 and no longer qualify for the immigrant visa.  The Child Status Protection Act (CSPA) amended the Immigration Nationality Act (INA) by changing who qualifies as a child for purposes of immigrant.   This permits certain beneficiaries to retain classification as a “child,” even if he or she has reached the age of 21.  A “child” is defined as an individual who is unmarried and under the age of 21.  Before CSPA took effect on August 6, 2002, a beneficiary who turned 21 at any time prior to receiving permanent residence could not be considered a child for immigration purposes.  This situation is described as “aging out.” CSPA is designed to protect a beneficiary’s immigration classification as a child when he or she ages out due to excessive processing times.  CSPA can protect “child” status for family-based immigrants, employment-based immigrants, and some humanitarian program immigrants (refugees, asylees, VAWA).  CLICK HERE to learn more.

For more information, email Gail@GailLaw.com or call 1-877-GAIL-LAW or 407-292-7730 and ask about a FREE consultation.

Military Immigration-Illegal Family Members of U.S. Military Personnel get Legal Status in U.S.

A new military immigration initiative has been launched to assist illegal aliens who are present without admission or parole and who are spouses, children and parents of those serving on active duty in the U.S. Armed Forces, in the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve or who previously served in the U.S. Armed Forces or Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve.  CLICK HERE to learn more

U.S. Visas & Green Cards for Same-Sex Marriages

The Supreme Court has found section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutional. Effective immediately, U.S. embassies and consulates along with U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services will adjudicate visa applications that are based on a same-sex marriage in the same manner they adjudicate applications for opposite gender spouses.

This means that the same sex spouse of a visa applicant coming to the U.S. for any purpose – including work, study, international exchange or as a legal immigrant – will be eligible for a derivative visa.  Likewise, stepchildren acquired through same sex marriages can also qualify as beneficiaries or for derivative status.

Lastly, same-sex marriages that are valid in the jurisdiction (U.S. state or foreign country) where it took place will be valid for immigration purposes and adjustment of status or applications for a application for permanent resident can be submitted in the United States.

For more information, CLICK HERE, to get further ImmigrationINFO.

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U.S. Government Shutdown Impact on Immigration

The United States government has been officially “shutdown”, which means about 800,000 employees — about a third of the federal workforce — are being forced off the job in the first government shutdown in 17 years, suspending most “nonessential” federal programs and services. But what impact will the government shutdown have on departments within the U.S. government that are associated with the U.S. immigration process? For more information on the immigration services and agencies impacted by the shutdown, CLICK HERE!