Musings on Immigration

Our Globally Recognized Team of Immigration Lawyers Sharing Knowledge and Providing Counsel on Immigration Issues that Affect You, Your Business and Your Family

Seis cambios de Inmigración bajo el Presidente Trump -- lo que anticipamos

Muchos estaban tan asombrados por el triunfo electoral de Trump que no habían reflexionado sobre los cambios específicos que pudo, y probablemente se hará una vez que llegue a la Presidencia el 20 de enero del 2017. Aquí una lista de seis cosas que el presidente Donald Trump, probablemente cambie en la actual política de inmigración:

1. DACA. Acción diferida para los llegados en la infancia, se hizo efectiva a partir del 15 de junio del 2012, y ha proporcionado permisos de trabajo y alivio del temor de la deportación a más de 750,0000 mujeres jóvenes indocumentadas y varones de 15 a 31, que vinieron aquí cuando eran niños y se graduaron en nuestros colegios y universidades. Prácticamente todos ellos trabajan, pagan impuestos, tienen sus propios vehículos, y contribuyen a nuestra sociedad. Es prácticamente seguro que el Presidente Trump finalice este programa el 20 de enero de 2017, como ha prometido hacer. Lo que es incierto es si él permitirá que aquellos con permisos de trabajo visiblemente válidos puedan seguir trabajando hasta el final de su tiempo asignado. Creemos que lo hará, ya que sería la política más fácil de implementar, en lugar de tener que cambiar individualmente cada fecha de caducidad en las bases de datos gubernamentales pertinentes. Todos los destinatarios DACA deberían hablar con un abogado experto en asuntos de inmigración hoy para ver si tiene otras opciones legales para obtener algún tipo de estatus en los Estados Unidos. Recomendamos que, al menos hasta el 1 de diciembre, todos los beneficiarios DACA que hayan recibido tarjetas de trabajo que expiren antes del 1 de mayo del 2017 extiendan sus tarjetas ahora, con la esperanza de que las tarjetas se amplíen y usted pueda seguir trabajando con ellas hasta la expiración. Si no lo ha hecho, también debe considerar obtener un documento de viaje de emergencia para un familiar muy enfermo, si hay uno en su familia, por lo que puede tener una entrada legal en su registro, debería, en el futuro, casarse con un ciudadano estadounidense.

2. DAPA. Acción diferida por responsabilidad parental programa que Obama anunció el 20 de noviembre del 2014, que nunca entró en vigor como consecuencia de una orden de la corte. Este programa fue creado por una política memo y pueden ser eliminados mediante una política memo. El efecto será mínimo, ya que la política nunca se llevó a cabo, pero creó una gran emoción para los 3-4 millones de personas a quienes les hubiera ayudada la vida. Esta política memo seguramente será retirada el 20 de enero del 2017, como Trump ha prometido.

3. Libertad condicional en el lugar ("PIP" o Parole en Plazo). El PIP fue creado por USCIS política memo bajo la administración de Bush y permite a los cónyuges y padres del personal militar activo y retirado presentar una petición a USCIS para permitirles "Entrar" o ser puestos en libertad condicional en los Estados Unidos, permitiendo que la persona pueda obtener la residencia permanente a través de su cónyuge o hijo/a sin tener que salir de los Estados Unidos y estar sujeta al castigo de 10 años de presencia ilegal. Básicamente, esto es un beneficio sólo para aquellos que sirven o que han servido a nuestro país. La palabra en DC es que este programa va a ser eliminado por el triunfo de la administración, pero no sabemos cuándo, nuestro consejo es archivar tales aplicaciones ahora para intentar obtener una aprobación antes de que este programa sea eliminado.

4. TPS. Estatus de protección temporal. Está autorizado por el Presidente para los nacidos en determinados países donde la guerra, un desastre natural, o cualquier otra calamidad prohíba la expulsión a ese país. Actualmente, más de 350.000 personas se encuentran en el TPS. Muchos han tenido TPS más de 15 años. Nueve países que actualmente están bajo el TPS, entre ellos El Salvador, Honduras, Nepal, Somalia, Siria, y Nicaragua. Existe una fuerte posibilidad, especialmente para los países en los que se produjeron los desastres que causaron la emisión de TPS hace muchos años, o donde se han realizado las reparaciones de infraestructura necesarias, que el TPS ya no se extenderá. Honduras y El Salvador no pudieron tener su TPS renovado tras la caducidad actual en el 2018. La gente en TPS de esos países (y otros países) ahora deben hablar con un abogado experto en asuntos de inmigración para ver si tienen otras opciones de inmigración.
  
5. Discreción fiscal o PD y la "ley de 10 años." PD se basa en una política memo emitido por la administración de Obama en el 2011 y revisadas en el 2014. Establece las normas por las que ICE ha operado en la aprehensión, detención, liberación y enjuiciamiento de los casos de inmigración. Esta política memo ha hecho que algunos abogados estén muy complacientes en el manejo de casos del tribunal de inmigración, prefiriendo tener cierres administrativos (PD) en lugar de luchar casos ganables. Creemos que el memo PD será retirado a finales de enero del 2017, y en su lugar el ICE volverá a los casos de expulsión y deportación contra todos los que encuentren y que los abogados de ICE perseguirán los casos de expulsión en la medida permitida por la ley. Esto significa que las personas que intencionalmente se ponen en un proceso de expulsión para solicitar un permiso de trabajo mediante la presentación de casos de asilo infundados pueden esperar que sus casos estén completamente litigados, frente a un 2% de tasa de aprobación para tales casos. Es triste que tantos sean llevados a la trampa de permisos de trabajo fáciles sin darse cuenta de las consecuencias finales de tal acción.

6. Redadas, Allanamientos y detenciones. Muchas personas están preocupadas de que Trump enviará nuestros "escuadrones de deportación" alrededor de la gente. Francamente, eso no va a suceder. Tales acciones son simplemente inconstitucionales, y cuestan mucho dinero, dinero que el gobierno no tiene. Por supuesto, el ICE seguirá buscando gente con pedidos de expulsión previa, aquellos con detención penal y convicciones, y cualquiera con un DUI en su pasado, ICE detendrá a esas personas y tratará de procesarlas rápidamente para la deportación. Todos, por supuesto, tienen derecho a una audiencia y luchar por su caso, pero después de unas semanas de detención muchas personas desisten y se dan por vencidos. El ICE detiene a personas por esta misma razón, así que, si usted tiene un buen caso, usted tiene que permanecer y luchar contra ella, porque una vez que son deportados, no vuelven durante diez años. Aquí la línea inferior es que no habrá allanamientos de viviendas o vecindarios buscando personas al azar el 20 de enero de 2017, pero ICE seguramente doblará sus esfuerzos para encontrar personas con órdenes de deportación previas e incluso delitos menores en su pasado.

Nuestro próximo blog hablará sobre las partes de la ley que no cambiarán de inmediato y de lo que la gente debe ejercer para arreglar su situación migratoria.

Six Changes to Immigration Under President Trump -- What we expect.

Many were so shocked by Trump's election that they had not given thought to the specific changes he could, and likely will make once he becomes President on January 20, 2017.  Here is a list of six things that President Trump is likely to changes in current immigration policy:

1.  DACA.   Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, was effective as of June 15, 2012, and has provided a work permit and relief from the fear of deportation to more than 750,0000 undocumented young woman and men from the ages of 15 to 31, who came here as children and graduated from our high schools and colleges. Virtually all of them work, pay taxes, own cars, and contribute to our society.  It is virtually certain that President Trump will terminate this program on January 20, 2017, as he has promised to do. What is uncertain is whether he will allow those with work permits that would remain facially valid to keep working until the end of their allotted time. We believe he will, as it would be the easiest to implement policy, rather than having to individually change each expiration date in the relevant government databases.  All DACA recipients should be talking to an experienced immigration lawyer today to see if they will have any other legal options to obtain some sort of status in the United States. We recommend that, at least until December 1, that all DACA beneficiaries who have work cards expiring before May 1, 2017 file to extend their cards now, with the hope the cards will be extended, and you will be able to continue working on them until expiration. If you have not done so, you should also consider getting an emergency travel document for a very sick relative, if there is one in your family, so you can have a legal entry on your record, should you, in the future, marry a US Citizen.

2.  DAPA.  The Deferred Action for Parental Accountability program that Obama announced on November 20, 2014, which never went into effect as a result of a court order.  This program was created by a policy memo and can be eliminated by a policy memo.  The effect will be minimal since the policy was never carried out, but it did create a great deal of excitement for the 3-4 million people who's lives it would have helped.  This policy memo will certainly be withdrawn on January 20, 2017, as Trump has promised.

3.  Parole in Place ("PIP").  PIP was created by USCIS policy memo under the Bush Administration and allows the spouse and parents of active and retired military personnel to file a petition with the USCIS to allow for them to "enter" or be paroled into the United States, thereby allowing the person to obtain permanent residence through their spouse or child without having to depart the United States and be subject to the 10 year bar for unlawful presence.  Essentially, this is a benefit only to those who serve or who have served our country.  The word in DC is that this program is going to be eliminated by the Trump administration, but we do not know when,  Our advice is to file any such applications now to try to get an approval before this program is eliminated.

4.  TPS.   Temporary Protected Status is authorized by the President to national from certain countries where war, natural disaster, or other such calamity prohibits removal to that country.  Currently more than 350,000 people are on TPS.  Many have had TPS for more that 15 years.  Nine countries currently are under TPS, including El Salvador, Honduras, Syria, Nepal, Somalia, and Nicaragua.  There is a strong possibility, especially for countries where the disasters that caused TPS to be issued occurred many years ago, or where the necessary infrastructure repairs have occurred, that TPS will no longer be extended.  Honduras and El Salvador may not have their TPS renewed after the current expirations in 2018.  People on TPS from those countries (and the other countries as well) should be speaking now to an experienced immigration lawyer to see if they have other immigration options.

5.  Prosecutorial Discretion or PD and the "10 year law."    PD is based upon a policy memo issued by the Obama administration in 2011 and then revised in 2014.  It sets the standards by which ICE has operated in the apprehension, detention, release and prosecution of immigration cases.  This policy memo has made some lawyers very complacent in their handling of immigration court cases, preferring to take administrative closure (PD) rather than fighting winnable cases.  We believe that the PD memo will be withdrawn by the end of January 2017, and in its place ICE will return to pursing removal and deportation cases against everyone they encounter, and that ICE attorneys will pursue removal cases to the fullest extent permitted by the law.  This means that people that intentionally put themselves in removal proceedings to seek a work permit by filing baseless asylum cases can expect to have their cases fully litigated, facing a 2% approval rate for such cases.  It is sad that so many were led into the trap of easy work permits without realizing the ultimate consequences of such an action.

6. Raids and Detention.  Many people are worried that Trump will send our "Deportation Squads" t round people up.  Frankly, that is not going to happen.  Such actions are simply unconstitutional, and cost lots of money, money the government does not have.  Of course, ICE will continue to look for people with prior removal orders, those with criminal arrest and convictions, and anyone with a DUI in their past, ICE will detain those people and try to process them quickly for deportation.  Everyone, of course, is entitled to a hearing and to fight their case, but after a few weeks in detention many people give up and want to leave.  ICE detains people for this very reason, so if you have a good case, you have to stay and fight it, because once you are deported, you are not coming back for ten years.  The bottom line here is that there will NOT be raids of homes or neighborhoods looking for random people on January 20, 2017, BUT ICE will surely double down on their efforts to find people with prior orders of deportation and even minor crimes in their past.

Our next blog will talk about the parts of the law that will not change immediately, and what people should be pursing now to try to fix their immigration status.


MUST Read Decision Regarding I-9 Penalties and Statute of Limitations for Employers!


On October 25, 2016, an administrative law judge with the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Office (“OCAHO”) held that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) waited too long to file allegations against, St. Croix Personnel Services Inc. (“St. Croix”) a personnel services company for incomplete or incorrect I-9 forms for some of its employees.
There is a five year statute of limitations for assessing penalties against an employer who fails to correctly complete an I-9 form.  The issue in the case was when that statute of limitations begins to run.  ICE argued that the errors they discovered on certain I-9 forms were not time-barred because the forms were not initiated correctly and errors not cured until February and March 2012, which was within five years of the complaint being filed in July 2015.

Alternatively, St. Croix argued that because the last of the eight employees was hired in October 2007, the statute of limitations for any and all I-9 errors ran out by October 2012.  The judge agreed with St. Croix and found that “[t]imeliness verification failures constitute an exception to the general rule that paperwork violations can be cured”, meaning that timeliness failures are frozen in time and cannot be cured once the statue of limitations passes. See USA v. St. Croix Personnel Services Inc., case number 15A00070.  ICE sought $16,690 in penalties, but the judge reduced the penalty to $5,450, because by St. Croix’s own admission they failed to ensure the forms for eight employees were properly filled out. 

This is a very important decision for employers because an employer cannot be penalized for failing to timely initiate the filing of an I-9 form when the employee was hired more than five years ago.  Though, it is important keep in mind a few basics regarding I-9 forms.  First, the employer can still be penalized for an improperly completed I-9 form.  Second and not relevant to this case, always keep in mind that an employer is obligated by law to keep an employee’s I-9 on file for at least three years after the date of hire and for at least one year after the date of termination, whichever is greater.  Once the time has passed, be sure to discard those the company is no longer required to keep on file because penalties can still be assessed for those I-9s.  Third, if ICE ever shows up at your business and demands to review the company’s I-9s, you are afforded three business days before you are obligated to turn over the documents.  In that time, be sure to contact your immigration attorney so the case is handled properly in an effort to reduce any penalties that may be assessed.

Please contact Danielle M. Claffey at 404.949.8151, or by email at dclaffey@immigration.net with any questions.