It's the beginning of a new year, and in just a few weeks, a new presidency. With Trump set to take office on January 20th, many in the country are scrambling to understand what this means for them. In business immigration, many changes are set to occur and they don't look too good.
1. E-verify will likely be mandatory
E-verify is a government-run program that requires employers to use an I-9 form to verify the identity and employment authorization of a potential employee. In the past, it was decided on a state-by-state basis if every business was required to participate. However it appears that Trump intends for every employer in the U.S. to be obligated to use it.
2. It will be harder than ever to get an H-1B visa
An H-1B visa is a visa that allows businesses to temporarily employ specialty foreign workers with a related bachelor's degree or equivalent. Trump is pushing for investigations into companies that have foreign nationals working for them, as well as raising the amount the employee would get paid, thus making it less appealing for an employer to have an H-1B holder. In addition, Trump wants companies to offer positions to American workers first, thus emphasizing the costly use of advertisements and recruiting agencies. What this means for employers is they must first ensure they offer positions to United States citizens and retain proof of that, face higher taxes if they outsource jobs, and be wary of frequent surprise audits and raids.
3. Vetting immigrants based on where they're from, what their religion is, and how they view America
This is a particularly troublesome aspect of the incoming president, morally and for the health of the country. Citizens from specific countries or those who have travelled to these regions will endure increased security processes. This includes Trump's vision of building a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico, despite researching proving historically that border walls do not work. Beyond its prejudices, this extreme form of screening will delay the travel times of corporation leaders and important officials alike.
4. DREAMers will have a much more difficult time becoming citizens, if they can at all
The DREAM Act (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) was Obama's attempt to assist those who came to the United States as minors become citizens if they fit a certain criteria, including receiving a high school diploma, serving in the Armed Forces, demonstrating good moral character, and passing a series of background checks. Unfortunately, Trump intends to eliminate DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) and DAPA (Deferred Action for Parents of American and Lawful Permanent Residents). This will possibly affect over four million undocumented immigrants, who have children that were brought into the country at a very young age or may have been born in the States and are lawful permanent citizens.
Irena Mykyta is a New York lawyer. This blog is not legal advice and should not be acted upon without obtaining legal counsel. To request further information, contact Irena for a free 30 minutes consultation at [email protected]