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Happy Holidays and welcome. For those of you who might be first time readers, Immigration Compliance Group focuses its practice on US and Canadian inbound business immigration and corporate employment eligibility compliance (I-9 audits, training, consulting and policy development). Our team has a depth of experience in providing uniquely tailored services and solutions to assist our clients in accomplishing their immigration related objectives.

As always, we welcome your feedback. If there's a topic you'd like to know more about, let us know. If you are interested in becoming a client of our office please call us at office at 562 612.3996. Check out our Employer Resource Center, our compliance services and solutions, and sign up to receive our newsletters and blog posts. For those of you who participate in LinkedIn, check out our I-9/E-Verify: Smart Solutions for Employers group.

Current Chatter on The Hill about Immigration Reform

Let's recap where we are since the election... We are witnessing some of the last desperate attempts to control the immigration debate by restrictionists who don't know when to stop. We can't state it any better than this article.

What should immigration reform look like?

Canada and Australia both have a higher percentage of people who are foreign born compared with the United States. In fact on this dimension, America - which once led the world - looks like most Western countries. Germany and France, for example, have about the same percentage of foreign born people as America. One important difference is that many of these countries have managed to take in immigrants mostly based on skills, giving a big boost to their economies. More on this here.

USCIS Develops Tools to Help Foreign Entrepreneurs Create and Grow Businesses in the USA

Much of the immigration challenges around case approval for entrepreneur start ups with USCIS has to do with the cases being reviewed by untrained officers, a lack of overall guidance for attorneys and practitioners concerning this casework, and a fundamental lack of “real world”, hands-on business knowledge on the part of USCIS. The agency has definitely released a nice looking mini-website marketing piece on the subject. We remain hopeful that the implementation of the below-listed changes will be the start of a new mindset for USCIS adjudication of entrepreneur start-up casework.

Agriculture needs an Efficient, Easily Managed Guest Worker Program

As immigration talks resume, the public debate has once again zeroed in on the merits of granting some type of so-called amnesty to 11 million illegal immigrants. But another, more complicated dispute - where the sides are equally entrenched - is brewing behind the scenes between organized labor and business interests. This debate, over how to manage future flows of legal immigration, particularly the size and scope of some kind of temporary worker program, could just as easily derail any type of immigration overhaul.

The New Faces of the 113th Congress

Foreign Students add Billions to the US Economy

Most people don't think of foreign students as an economic resource, yet that is precisely what they are. Each year, students from other countries spend billions of dollars in the U.S. economy, pumping money not only into the colleges and universities they attend, but the surrounding businesses as well.

Want to know what foreign students are adding to the economy in your state? In California, it's $1.8+ Billion

The 2012 House and Senate elections brought over 80 new members to Washington. Use this interactive application to sort and filter the freshmen by age, experience, ethnicity, and more. Hover over each picture for name, state, and district information. To read a full narrative of each newcomer, written by the staff of The Almanac of American Politics, click the member's picture. Click here to see a full listing of new members of Congress.

Strength in Diversity: One in Eight People in the USA is Foreign Born

Immigrants, Latinos, and Asians constitute large and growing shares of the U.S. workforce, tax base, business community, and electorate. Immigrants (the foreign-born) account for 1 out of every 8 people in the United States, and 1 out of every 7 workers.

Immigration News in the States

A new immigration law in Georgia requires everyone licensed by the state to prove citizenship. But the law is having an unintended consequence. Hundreds of health care workers in Georgia are losing their licenses to practice because of a problem created by a new immigration law in the state. With too few state workers to process the extra paperwork, licenses for doctors, nurses, pharmacists and other health professionals are expiring.

A South Carolina federal judge today cleared a previously blocked provision of the state's immigration law that requires police to check the immigration status of lawfully stopped individuals if they have reason to believe the individual is in the country illegally. U.S. District Judge Richard Gergel reconsidered his December 2011 ruling in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in June allowing the similar “show me your papers” provision in Arizona's immigration law to stand — for now. Gergel held today that he was obligated to unblock the provision in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's precedent, but he made clear that the high court's decision left the door wide open for future challenges once the law goes into effect.

Los Angeles City Council members have given enthusiastic backing to the creation of a controversial city identification card that could be used by illegal immigrants to open bank accounts, borrow library books and pay utility bills. Read more here.

Less than six months after it received a stinging rebuke from the Supreme Court, Arizona today was hit with another major lawsuit over its punitive immigration policies-this time challenging its practice of denying driver's licenses to beneficiaries of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

Employer Compliance News

  • ICE fines Massachusetts. Companies Hiring Unlawful Employees: Worksite Enforcement Strategy Holds Employers Accountable for Violations
Massachusetts employers were fined a total of $349,619.54 in fiscal year (FY) 2012 for various employment violations. Read More here.

USCIS released I-9 instructions to employers regarding how to fill out the I-9 form for new and existing DACA employees. There have been many questions and speculations concerning how to handle the Form I-9 with existing employees; thus, this guidance is certainly welcomed. Refer to our blog posts: here and here.

Should you wish to know more about our services or become a client of our office, please contact us at info@immigrationcompliancegroup.com, or call 562.612.3996.

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Disclaimer/Reminder: This newsletter does not constitute direct legal advice and is for informational purposes only. The information provided should never replace informed counsel when specific immigration-related guidance is needed. Copyright 2007-2012 Immigration Compliance Group.


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