The U.S. election stunned the world. Whether you are a Democrat or a Republican, I don’t think anybody expected Trump to win as resoundingly as he did. I’ve already gotten dozens of emails from former, current and prospective clients asking, “how does this affect my immigration options to the United States?” The short-term answer is “it won’t” and the long-term answer is “it depends.” U.S. immigration law is federal – many of the visa and green card categories were implemented with the cooperation of the executive, legislative and judicial branches. Other categories, like DACA, were implemented through executive action by President Obama and could be repealed by a future President. TN visas (for Canadians and Mexicans) are a product of NAFTA – a trade agreement that Trump bemoaned throughout the entire campaign. So long term, there could be changes to some categories. DACA could be rescinded. TN visas could cease to exist if Trump pulls the United States out of NAFTA. However, my feeling is that you won’t see changes to many of the visa and green card applications that we currently process.
Will there be a wall? Will there be “mass deportation”? Will there be “extreme vetting” of new immigrants to the United States? These are broader questions that will undoubtedly be answered over the next four years. Obviously, the electoral majority embraced these proposals – as evidenced by the vote. But how realistic will it be to build a wall to keep out all Mexicans at the border? Or to deport 11 million undocumented aliens in the 1st month of office? Or to vet every immigrant application for “Western values” based on a test? Thankfully, it won’t be easy.
We’ll see what the future brings but to the thousands of clients I have gotten visas, green cards and citizenship for, you will not suddenly be told to leave the United States. To prospective clients reconsidering immigrating to the United States, America was and will continue to be the Land of Opportunity. The U.S. Government has a system of checks and balances – no one branch of government has authority over another.
So go ahead and marry your American fiancé. Go ahead and take that job offer in California. Go ahead and chase your dream of starting your own business here. We’ll be here if you need us.