After four years of chaotic immigration policies, where no one knew what the policy would be tomorrow, immigration clients and attorneys are ready for thoughtful and effective immigration policy consistency.
U.S. business immigration reform and consistency is desperately needed. The Trump Administration made more than 400 immigration policy changes that have reshaped and delayed every aspect of the system.
For example, Trump suspended the issuance of new L-1, H-1B, and other visas until 2021, ostensibly to protect the labor market. Unfortunately, this ban will have massive long‐term economic implications. These talented foreign workers who have been blocked from entering the country provide us with needed diversity, innovation, and economic prosperity.
President Biden has an opportunity to bring back an immigration system that is governed by law — rather than unfounded executive orders and proclamations.
Below is a wish list for the new administration based on our business immigration clients’ feedback.
No 1. Restoring a respectful and efficient customer service process that provides access to knowledgeable officers and eliminates huge barriers to case information and guidance.
No 2. Creating a consistent, reliable, economically driven H-1B cap selection process, including increasing the H-1B visas number as determined by business necessity.
No 3. Rescinding Trump’s H-1B and PERM regulations relating to unfounded DOL wages, specialty occupation, and lottery registration selection.
No 4. Returning to reasonable and consistent processing times, including the 90-day or less adjudicatory timeframe for EADs, and automatic 180-day extensions for timely filed work authorization applications.
No 5. Reinstating the ability to waive interviews for employment-based applicants for adjustment of status or nonimmigrant visa reissuance based on the background of the case — something that will free up needed resources to provide more efficient services.
No 6. Stopping to count derivatives separately under the family and employment-based green card preferences, which will provide needed green card visa numbers and minimize backlogs.
No 7. Promoting and supporting entrepreneurial and skilled immigration.
No 8. Eliminating racial and national-origin profiling in immigration cases.
It’s a big job. But with the right mindset and guiding principles, the new administration can get the United States’ immigration system back on track and make our great country the envy of the world once again.