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Executive Action on Immigration Appears Imminent

Progress on Immigration — Years in the Making

After years of waiting, it seems that relief to millions of undocumented immigrants in the United States may be forthcoming. During a press conference earlier today (11/14/14) the President cited his authority as chief executive of the United States and indicated he would act on immigration by the end of the year. Senior administration officials have posited the contours of the program may be announced as early as next week. A war of words has erupted between the administration and members of Congress, with immigration emerging as the hot-button post-election issue. It is important to note that as of the time of writing, Executive Action has not yet passed. However, it seems the administration has tired of waiting and will move forward absent a last minute compromise from Congress.

Who will Benefit from Executive Action?

According to reports quoting senior administration officials, the design of the Executive Action plan will potentially have three aspects:

  1. Allowing parents of children who are U.S. citizens to stay in the U.S. and receive permission to work;
  2. Continue to allow individuals brought to the U.S. as undocumented children to stay in the U.S. and receive permission to work; and
  3. Focus the deportation efforts on convicted criminals.

It is important to note that the exact program is still being designed. Provisions for increasing work visas for the tech industry workers and bolstering border security were also mentioned by senior administration officials earlier today for potential inclusion. Several important points related to defining who will qualify are also still being reviewed and discussed — namely, what is the cut-off date by which an individual would have had to enter the U.S. in order to qualify, and whether individuals with a non-violent criminal record (for example, a DUI conviction) would be covered.

When will Executive Action be Officially Announced?

As Executive Action has not formally been announced, questions remain as to timing. While the NY Times and Faux News have recently reported that an announcement may occur as soon as early next week, administration officials have denied that the announcement would come so soon. Earlier today (11/14/14), during a meeting of the American Immigration Lawyers Association in San Jose, CA, the author surveyed opinions of fellow immigration attorneys as to their thoughts on timing of Executive Action passage. Most were of the belief that the announcement may not come until around Thanksgiving or December 12th (December 11th being the date until which the federal government has been funded).

The political volatility of this topic makes a certain timeline difficult to predict. Moreover, by making public its intentions in moving forward with Executive Action, the administration may also be engaging in political maneuvering to pressure certain factions of Congress to pass a Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill soon. As the President has stated previously, it is Congress’ inability to act which has pushed him to act take Executive Action.

It remains to be seen when and if the proposed Executive Action will come to pass in the coming days and possibly weeks. We will update our site with any official announcement.


See also: The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (“DACA”) program.

See also: Our most recent article on Executive Action.

See also: Inadmissibility grounds that make an immigrant ineligible for benefits.

See also: 3 Tips for making the most of an immigration consultation.

See also: Information about scheduling a consultation with our law firm.

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