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Merit-based system may change U.S. immigration law

Though some people may think it will have no impact no them, changes to immigration can easily effect most individuals, including California residents. Paying attention to these potential changes may be especially important to individuals who have come to the United States from different countries. For them, U.S. immigration law could have a considerable impact on their family unity and livelihood.

Family unity has seemingly been a top priority in the past when it comes to immigration. Individuals who live in the U.S. often sponsor relatives in other countries so that they can make a home here. Many individuals feel that having family values as a priority in relation to immigration also reflects some of the overall important values of the American people.

Now that immigration changes are a prime topic, the current administration is considering a change that would readjust the system from family-based to merit-based. However, it does not seem immediately clear what would constitute merit in terms of immigration. Though it has been suggested that high education and being English-speaking could constitute merit, those attributes may not apply to individuals who work in lower-earning occupations, such as strawberry pickers.

It can feel immensely confusing and stressful to know that changes to U.S. immigration law are on the horizon but not knowing what those changes may mean. If individuals in California feel that they could be affected by such changes, they may wish to find out more information on how to protect themselves from potential deportation or other actions. Consulting with knowledgeable attorneys could help concerned parties better understand law changes and legal options.

Source: csmonitor.com, "In immigration debate, what constitutes 'merit'?", Francine Kiefer and Henry Gass, Jan. 30, 2018

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