Business and the Workforce

The U.S. immigration system is complex and can be difficult to understand. These resources provide key data points, historical information, and background on hot topics in immigration. Learn the basics about immigration.

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December 14, 2017
This wage calculation is at the heart of the employment-based immigration system Congress devised to protect U.S. workers from unfair competition, while refraining from micromanaging the hiring...
September 13, 2017
This fact sheet describes the legal avenues in the United States available to promising entrepreneurs, as well as some of the barriers they face securing immigration status through these paths.
August 11, 2017
The Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act (RAISE Act) or S. 354 would mark a sweeping overhaul of the U.S. immigration system. It would significantly reduce levels of legal...
June 14, 2017
Foreign-born workers make up a growing share of the country’s STEM workforce and are critical to the country’s innovation, and STEM workers are responsible for many of the cutting-edge ideas and...
March 8, 2017
There are nearly 12 million immigrant (foreign-born) women workers in the United States today, comprising just over 7 percent of the total labor force.
November 18, 2016
From construction workers to gardeners, many low-wage immigrant workers are in fact quite skilled.
February 2, 2016
The Immigrant Investor Program, also known as “EB-5,” has become an increasingly important source of investment for development projects in the United States, attracting billions of dollars to the U...
December 14, 2015

Americans pride themselves on belonging to a nation of immigrants. In fact, many Americans celebrate not only the traditions of the United States, but the traditions of the countries from which...

January 15, 2014
A potent combination of declining population growth and economic stagnation has led many cities and metropolitan regions to rethink how to reinvigorate their communities. The Midwest is a prime...
June 12, 2013
Latino immigrants and African Americans fill complementary roles in the labor market—they are not simply substitutes for one another.
In denying the petition, USCIS disregarded substantial evidence that the employer requires a bachelor's or higher degree in a "specific specialty" because of the complexity and specialized nature of the job duties.
Under the Trump administration, we have seen an uptick in requests for additional information about petitions filed by U.S. employers on behalf of foreign-born workers. We also have seen greater numbers of denials of these petitions. According to the employers and their workers, these trends reflect unlawful adjudications across the board. In response to these changes, the Council filed two Freedom in Information Act requests.
With the data sought through the requests, the Council hopes to better understand USCIS’ adjudication of employment-based immigrant and nonimmigrant petitions and how the adjudication process has evolved over multiple years.
This case is representative of the difficulties employers encounter when new occupations emerge to fill business needs which require at least a bachelor’s degree, but no consensus exists as to the degree requirement.
In recent years, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has been denying H-1B petitions for jobs that the agency previously approved as being in a specialty occupation. This case is representative.
The denials of employment-based petitions must end. This suit challenges the policy changes that restrict employers’ lawful use of H-1B workers.

On behalf of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the American Immigration Council filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) challenging U.S. Citizenship and...

Prioritizing the immigration of multinational executives and managers recognizes the need for the United States to remain competitive in an increasingly global economy.
Entrepreneurs, start-up companies and a trade association joined together to oppose the postponement of the International Entrepreneur Rule.
February 28, 2017
The Council filed an amicus brief in a case pending before the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO), an administrative body at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that reviews denials of most employment-based visa petitions.
September 14, 2016

This Practice Tip demystifies mandamus by explaining how and when to ask a court for this remedy when a client has been waiting too long for USCIS to make a decision.

July 27, 2016
This Practice Tip analyzes the pros and cons of appealing to the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) following the denial of an employment-based visa petition.
May 25, 2016
This Practice Tip explains how practitioners can turn a Request for Evidence (RFE) into an opportunity to strengthen the administrative record through a thoughtful and thorough response.
April 1, 2016
This Practice Tip outlines how you can build a strong administrative record to set the stage for challenging the denial of a client's visa petition in federal court.
November 6, 2015

This Practice Advisory provides basic information about mandamus actions and suggests strategies and practice tips for bringing a mandamus action against the Department of Labor (DOL).

June 20, 2013
This Practice Advisory discusses the primary issues involved in a suit brought under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) to challenge an unlawful agency action. The Advisory provides examples of how these issues have been decided in immigration cases and arguments that can be made to meet the various procedural requirements for an APA action.
June 1, 2008

This Practice Advisory offers a short introduction to habeas corpus, addressing when and how a petitioner may file a petition for writ of habeas corpus in the immigration context.

April 5, 2006
This Practice Advisory discusses the changes that the REAL ID Act made to INA § 242(a)(2)(B) and outlines an analysis for whether §242(a)(2)(B) applies to a particular case. It also discusses federal court jurisdiction over discretionary decisions after the REAL ID Act in the removal and non-removal contexts. The government has asserted this jurisdictional bar in employment-based, family-based, and humaritarian-based immigration cases.
May 29, 2020

May 31 closes out Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, a time dedicated to recognizing the contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States. The...

May 20, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has affected day-to-day life for everyone, including foreign nationals who planned to participate in the U.S. Department of State’s Exchange Visitor Program. These...

May 15, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the importance of essential workers in keeping America up and running. First-responders, medical staff, meat packers, and domestic, hospitality, and...

May 13, 2020

A long-running lawsuit over a rule allowing certain spouses of highly educated H-1B workers to work in the United States took an interesting twist. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS),...

May 1, 2020

The coronavirus presents a clear and immediate danger to America’s food supply. Meatpacking plants in particular have taken a huge hit. To mitigate the loss of production, President Trump signed...

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...

July 19, 2017
U.S. District Court Judge James Robert granted a motion to certify a nationwide class in Northwest Immigrant Rights Project v. USCIS, recognizing that USCIS must adjudicate asylum seekers’ employment authorization applications within 30 days if they are submitted in a timely manner.
May 23, 2016

shington D.C. - The American Immigration Council (Council) and the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) have teamed up on a lawsuit against the U.S.

March 17, 2015

Washington D.C. - Today, the American Immigration Council's Executive Director, Benjamin Johnson, testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee about the integral role immigration plays in

September 17, 2014

Washington, D.C.

November 8, 2013

Yesterday, the American Immigration Council, in collaboration with AILA, filed an amicus brief

November 19, 2012

For Immediate Release

LAC Wins Release of H-1B Fraud Documents for AILA

June 9, 2011

Washington D.C. - Today, the Brookings Institution released a new report,

April 13, 2011

Washington D.C. - A recent ruling from a federal judge in

October 8, 2020

The Trump administration issued two rules October 8 that, if not overturned, will further restrict legal immigration. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued the first rule, which only...

October 6, 2020

This document provides a summary of the Department of Homeland Security's September 25, 2020, Proposed Rule, "...

October 2, 2020

On October 1, a federal judge ordered the Trump administration to stop enforcing parts of a presidential proclamation that banned many foreign workers from entering the United States. The court...

October 1, 2020

The Trump administration is successfully using the COVID-19 pandemic as a pretext to alter the U.S. system of legal immigration. New government data makes clear that these changes will...

September 30, 2020
This report identifies disruptions throughout the immigration system because of the COVID-19 pandemic and makes recommendations for improvements to the federal government’s response.
August 14, 2020
In the immigration context, Equal Access to Justice Act fees generally are available in petitions for review, mandamus actions, Administrative Procedure Act suits, habeas corpus actions, and naturalization actions.
August 5, 2020

The dangers to America’s farmworkers—primarily immigrant men from Mexico with temporary H-2A visas—have long persisted under a system that is ripe for abuse. But those risks have only grown since...

June 29, 2020

On June 22, 2020, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a rule that removes the 30 day processing deadline for the adjudication of employment authorization document (EAD)...

June 23, 2020

The Trump administration has banned foreign nationals on certain employment-based nonimmigrant visas from entering the United States. The new ban begins June 24, at 12:01 am ET. The administration...

June 22, 2020
The Trump administration announced a more permanent order that suspends many categories of immigration to the United States and an expanded ban that halts many legal employment-based immigration categories for those outside of the United States.

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