Business and the Workforce

The immigration laws and regulations provide some avenues to apply for lawful status from within the U.S. or to seek relief from deportation.  The eligibility requirements for these benefits and relief can be stringent, and the immigration agencies often adopt overly restrictive interpretations of the requirements.  Learn about advocacy and litigation that has been and can be undertaken to ensure that noncitizens have a fair chance to apply for the benefits and relief for which they are eligible.  

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Publication Date: 
July 1, 2005
Current immigration policies are completely out of sync with the U.S. economy’s demand for workers who fill less-skilled jobs, especially in the case of Mexican workers. While U.S. immigration...
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May 1, 2005
Although immigration is crucial to the growth of the U.S. labor force and yields a net fiscal benefit to the U.S. economy, current immigration policies fail to respond to actual labor demand.
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August 1, 2004
Foreign-born scientists and engineers (S&Es) have long played a prominent role in U.S. technological and scientific advancement and are a critical part of the science and engineering (S&E)...
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August 1, 2004
Arbitrary congressional limits on the number of H-1B visas that can be granted annually to highly skilled foreign professionals may undermine the international competitiveness of U.S. science and...
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May 1, 2004
According to a recent National Science Board report, restrictive U.S. visa policies are beginning to close the door to highly skilled foreign professionals who have long helped maintain U.S...
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April 1, 2004
The current numerical limits on visas for both high-skilled and seasonal workers prevent U.S. businesses from hiring the workers they need, while doing nothing to protect the jobs or wages of native...
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April 1, 2004
Contrary to popular myth, H-1B professionals represent only a tiny fraction of the total U.S. labor force and do not crowd out native-born workers in industries that are losing jobs. Rather, H-1B...
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February 1, 2004
Foreign-born and foreign-trained professionals play an important role in the delivery of health care in the United States. This report examines the important role of immigrant doctors and nurses –...
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February 1, 2003
Americans are rightfully proud of our nation's higher education system. Scholars come to the U.S. from all over the world and we have historically educated many of the world's leaders. But the...
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September 1, 2002
America's current immigration policies are antiquated and fail to recognize the importance of Mexican workers to the national economy. U.S. immigration law must provide ways for Mexican workers to...
April 17, 2020

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has been denying many H-1B petitions by misinterpreting the law. On April 16, 2020, the American Immigration Council and partners filed a...

April 16, 2020

Individuals participating in the J-1 Visa Exchange Visitor Program were faced with a difficult choice in the hours after President Trump issued travel restrictions to Europe: leave their program...

April 7, 2020

The U.S. agricultural industry depends on seasonal guest workers to produce the food Americans eat. Since 1986, the H-2A visa program has allowed employers to fill labor shortages with temporary...

April 6, 2020

Immigrants living in the United States are eligible for unemployment benefits. But as the health and economic impacts of the coronavirus spread across the country, many are reportedly afraid to...

March 26, 2020

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) completed its first registration period on March 20 for H-1B petitions. The H-1B visa category allows highly educated foreign workers to...

March 24, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic unfolds, the U.S. health care system will likely be pushed to its limits. During this time, it is important to remember the role that immigrant health care workers play...

March 4, 2020

The Trump administration has worked to close the door on all types of immigrants—including people trying to come to the United States on visas. Consequently, the United States is experiencing a...

February 26, 2020

For the first time, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is requiring U.S. employers to register in order to have a chance to file an H-1B petition that is subject to the annual...

January 16, 2020

The new process for petitioning for highly educated H-1B workers will officially begin on March 1, 2020. For the first time, a U.S. employer who wants to file a petition that is subject to the...

December 12, 2019
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently announced that U.S. employers will have to pay a $10 fee and register to have a chance at filing an H-1B petition subject to the statutory “...
January 25, 2022

The labor shortages currently afflicting many sectors of the U.S. economy are being aggravated by the arrival of fewer and fewer workers from abroad. Although immigration has been slowing since...

January 21, 2022
The Biden administration announced new efforts to modernize parts of our immigration system, and remove barriers to legal immigration. DHS will add 22 new fields of study in the STEM Optional Practical Training program through the Student and Exchange Visitor Program, and will implement a series of additional changes to allow foreign students, scholars, and researchers to come to the United States and make meaningful contributions to America’s scholarly, research and development, and innovation communities.
Publication Date: 
December 16, 2021
The American Immigration Council and 13 other organizations urged USCIS to expand premium processing to ensure the agency remains solvent while efficiently and effectively adjudicating all...
December 1, 2021

A lesser-known group of young people who grew up in the United States with immigration status—typically the children of noncitizens who entered the U.S. on temporary work visas—is increasingly at...

The Council and partners filed a nationwide class action lawsuit to ensure timely renewal of work authorizations documents for asylum seekers.
November 5, 2021

Annual limits on immigrant visa numbers, combined with processing delays and wasted numbers, mean even longer waits for people to become U.S. permanent residents. In November, the “cut off” date...

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Publication Date: 
November 2, 2021
The Council joined 89 other organizations in a letter calling for Congress to include visa-related provisions in the budget reconciliation.
October 27, 2021

A recent class action settlement is expected to result in U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) approving more market research analyst H-1B petitions. The lawsuit was filed by four U.S...

Publication Date: 
October 4, 2021
This Practice Advisory discusses the primary issues involved in a suit brought under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) to challenge an unlawful agency action.
Publication Date: 
August 27, 2021
This fact sheet provides an overview about the legalization program through which certain undocumented farmworkers in the United States could earn legal status.

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