Immigration Reform

Immigrant Doctors in Houston Are Given 24 Hours to Leave, Then Reprieved

By Peek & Toland on August 2, 2017

Immigrant doctors have been caught up in the ongoing immigration crackdown and moves to impose travel bans across the United States.

In Texas, a husband and wife team of doctors from Houston came close to deportation, even though they were legally in the United States.

The New York Daily News reported on the ordeal faced by Dr. Pankaj Satija and his wife Dr. Monika Ummat.

immigrant doctors from Houston were told the leave the country

Immigrant doctors from Houston were threatened with deportation

Satija is a highly qualified neurologist. He’s also the founder of the Pain and Headache Centers of Texas. He is reported to perform about 200 operations per month.

Ummat is also a leading neurologist. She treats epileptic boys and girls at the Texas Children’s Hospital. They have children aged seven and 4. The children are U.S. citizens by birth.

The doctors are living and working legally in the United States. They arrived in Texas in 2002 to do research and complete medical residencies as well as fellowships at leading American universities.

Satija’s employer sponsored him for permanent residency a decade ago. The New York Daily News said the massive backlog which is particularly large for Indians means they were granted provisional status. They renew it every two years.

The doctors’ achievements cut little ice with immigration officials. In the spring, they were told they had 24 hours to pull their children out of school and leave the United States for India.

They were informed a new policy would prevent them for extending their temporary permission as they awaited permanent residency status.

Their doctors’ problems started when they took a trip back to India in October to visit a sick family member

When they returned to the United States, U.S. Customs and Border Protection apprehended them at Bush Intercontinental Airport, because their travel documents had expired.

They were allowed to enter the United States temporarily. However, immigration officials told them they had a week to get out of the country in March.

Immigrant Doctors Fight Against Removal

The doctors managed to fight the removal. The Houston Chronicle reported they were lucky to have good connections including skilled immigration lawyers, support from the local medical community and access to the local media. They were assisted by the offices of U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, and U.S. Rep. John Culberson, R-Houston.

Many of those caught up in the present immigration clampdown are doctors. Overseas doctors make up as much as 50 percent of physicians in some specialties. If you are facing removal from the United States, our Texas cancellation of removal lawyers can help you. Please contact us here.

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How immigration Impacts Economic Growth

By Peek & Toland on July 26, 2017

There has been considerable debate in recent months about whether immigration has a positive or a negative impact on the economy and the lifestyle of the United States. A recent study suggests immigration has a more dramatic impact on economic growth than many people think.

Statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau reveal immigrants are responsible for almost half of the growth of the population of the United States. They are also responsible for a considerable rise in the U.S. labor force.

The report on CNBC was based on assumptions relating to the projected increase in the population and GDP of the United States.

The relationship between immigration and economic growth

Immigration impacts economic growth

Joel Prakken, senior managing director and co-founder of Macroeconomic Advisers, said projections that the economy will grow by 2 percent link labor size growth to an increase in productivity.

Prakken said immigrants appear to make up a larger portion of the growth in the labor force. The population of the United States is aging but immigrants tend to be younger. They may come to the United States specifically to seek jobs. He said:

“Most people are totally shocked when they actually process the fact that immigrants are already almost half of the population growth, assumed in our 2 percent GDP projection and by the time you get to 2045, 80 percent of it is.”

The increase in the proportion of the population born in the United States is expected to fall due to the aging of the population and declining fertility rates.

Could Moves to Cut Immigration Impact Economic Growth?

Prakken said he’s concerned a proposed bill in the Senate would limit immigration. This legislation would half the 1.1 million immigrants who arrived in 2015 if enacted. Prakken said over a period of time that could dent the growth rate of 2 percent by approximately a quarter point. Over time the impact on the economy could become more progressively more serious.

The census assumes immigration will continue to increase. However, the bill would not allow for any growth.

A raft of studies has pointed to the positive impact immigration has on economic growth. Last year we noted research from the National Academy of Sciences that noted immigration may have a beneficial impact on the wages of local workers.

If you or a family member needs the services of an experienced Austin immigration lawyer please contact us here.

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Republicans Seek to End Diversity Immigrant Visas

By Peek & Toland on July 21, 2017

The system that hands out diversity immigrant visas is known as the “green card lottery.” Every year, as many as 14 million people seek to win one of 50,000 diversity immigrant visas.

We highlight how diversity immigrant visas work on our blog. It’s targeted at countries with low rates of immigration to the United States.

The chances of winning the “green card lottery” is about 0.3 percent, states Voice of America.

diversity immigrant visas are under threat

visas awarded under the ‘green card lottery’ are under threat

Foreign residents who attain diversity immigrant visas get to live in the United States and may later attain citizenship. But the green card lottery is under threat.

Recent legislation submitted by two Republican lawmakers would discontinue the lottery. Senators Tom Cotton of Arkansas and David Perdue of Georgia penned legislation that would end it after 22 years.

Their proposal also calls for a reduction in the number of immigrants and refugees allowed to enter the United States every year.

The SAFE for America Act would spell an end to diversity immigrant visas if it’s enacted. While both Republican and Democrats attempted to end the diversity program in 2016, the proposal was buried in other legislation that failed to pass.

Voice of America stated the legislation is more likely to succeed this time. Unlike last year, Republicans control both Houses of Congress and the White House. It’s also in line with President Donald Trump’s restrictions on immigration.

Announcing their bill, the two senators claimed it would help the effort to raise the wages of Americans. Perdue said it was part of the effort to fix so-called shortcomings in the existing immigration system.

Is There a Link Between Diversity Immigrant Visas and Jobs and Wages?

However, some researchers say it’s almost impossible to prove there is a link between diversity immigrant visas and jobs and wages.

Opponents of the green card lottery say people requesting the visa are sometimes lying about key details. In a report a decade ago, the U.S. Government referenced fraud in relation to the program. However, the State Department subsequently improved the application process to reduce the likelihood of abuse.

The countries that are eligible to apply for the green card lottery in 2018 include Spain, Italy, Turkey, Poland, Romania, Japan, Russia, and Nepal.

Diversity immigrant visas are one of the few ways foreigners can legally move to the United States if they are not refugees or are not sponsored. Successful applicants must have a high school education or a work history to qualify.

In 2015, just 48,097 diversity visas were handed out by the United States, less than 10 percent of all immigrant visas given that year, reported Voice of America.

At Peek & Toland, PLLC, we help applicants for a wide variety of immigrant and non-immigrant visas in Texas. Call us at (512) 474-4445 for more details.

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Police Chiefs Object to Trump’s Plan to Enlist Officers in Deportation Actions

By Peek & Toland on July 11, 2017

The vigorous approach of the Trump administration in deporting undocumented immigrants is under fire from an unlikely source. A group of police chiefs is objecting to Trump’s plan to enlist their officers in deportation actions.

An article in The Guardian referred to a joint letter signed by more than 60 police chiefs. It appeals to Trump to retreat on his pledge enlist police officers to deport millions of unlawful immigrants.

The police chiefs of four major Texas cities – Austin, Houston, San Antonio, and Dallas are among the signatories.

The officers warn helping to enforce immigration law threatens to harm locally-based, community-oriented policing.

Police have reservations about helping Trump's deportation actions

Police chiefs raise concerns at Trump’s deportation actions

The letter was signed by 61 current and former local police chiefs and sheriffs. Many of them come from southern Republican states including Texas, Alabama, Arizona, South Carolina and Florida.

The letter was penned under the auspices of the Law Enforcement Immigration Task Force. It’s a coalition of senior law enforcement experts gathered together by the National Immigration Forum.

President Trump is not mentioned by name but the letter references his administration’s policies of forcing police to play a more central role in deportation actions.

One of Trump’s first executive orders saw the overturning of the Priority Enforcement Program (PEP), which was put in place by his predecessor Barack Obama, reported the Guardian.

The PEP entailed the creation of customized agreements between the federal government and local law enforcement jurisdictions related to joint working. Immigration agents focused on rounding up and deporting undocumented immigrants who committed serious violent crimes.

It replaced a previous policy that also targeted those with minor offenses or no criminal records at all.

Some police chiefs like Charlie Beck, who has led the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) since 2009, have flatly opposed Trump’s moves to use local police forces as adjuncts to federal immigration agents

Austin in Texas has been leading the fight against immigration holds. When Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers believe a defendant in a jail may be an undocumented immigrant a detainer request is made to local authorities to hold the individual. Austin is opposing these hold requests unless the immigrant has committed a serious crime like a homicide.

Nationally, 16 states including Texas declined 206 detainer requests from Jan. 28 and Feb. 3, stated the DHS’ Declined Detainer Outcome Report.

A report in Courthouse News said Travis County, which includes Austin, accounted for more than two-thirds of the refusals: 142 in total.

Deportation actions are often emotive and break up families. If they lose a breadwinner, they may no longer be able to function as a family unit.

At Peek & Toland, PLLC, we are committed to keeping families together and have fought numerous cancellation of removal actions. Call us at (512) 474-4445.


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Sheriffs Who Flout Immigration Rules in Texas Will Commit a Crime

By Peek & Toland on July 3, 2017

Texas has upped the stakes in the immigration battle raging across the nation related to the holding of undocumented migrants who commit a crime. A new law passed in April means sheriffs who flout immigration rules will commit a crime.

The bill which is the first of its kind in the country passed in April after 16 hours of debate.

Texas is first state to pass legislation that creates criminal penalties for law enforcement officers who do not honor Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) “detainer’ requests to hold people in local jails in Texas. Senate Bill 4 was passed on party lines.

Sheriffs who flout immigration rules may be charged with a crime

Sheriffs who flout immigration rules in Texas face sanctions

The law renders the failure to comply with ICE “detainer requests,” a criminal offense where people suspected of being undocumented immigrants can be held for up to 48 hours in local facilities so as ICE officers can collect them, reported Vice News.

Sheriffs Who Flout Immigration Rules Are Targeted by Texas Governor

In Texas, the bill was rushed through the legislature after Gov. Greg Abbott stated the elimination of sanctuary cities was a priority. He highlighted it as an emergency item in his State of the State address in late January.

We previously noted how Travis County Sheriff Sally Hernandez and Abbott were on a collision course over the sheriff’s refusal to honor ICE detainer requests in Austin.

Hernandez who was elected last November said her office would only cooperate with detainer requests for people arrested for serious felonies. Abbott took aim at her. He said:

“Elected officials don’t get to pick and choose which laws they obey. To protect Texans from deadly danger, we must insist that laws be followed.”

Under the bill, Hernandez and other sheriffs who flout immigration rules over ICE detainer requests would be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. It’s the most serious misdemeanor category in Texas. The law applies to other law enforcement officials and administrators.

There is some disagreement about whether the Texas law is enforceable and it might be subject to a legal challenge.

Is Texas Sanctuary City Measure Lawful?

In 2014, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals held ICE detainers are mere requests. In other words, they are voluntary and not enforceable. However, Texas is in the Fifth Circuit.

Texas Senator Charles Perry (R-Lubbock), who carried the bill through the Senate said Texas is not bound by that court’s ruling.

However, Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez, spoke against the bill at a rally.

He said the measure is not something Texas should aspire to be. Representatives from the Dallas and Bexar County Sheriff’s Departments were also at a rally in April to protest the measure.

The legislation puts Texas at the forefront of the immigration debate. It remains to be seen if it’s legal.

If you are impacted by an immigration matter in Texas, please call our experienced immigration team at (512) 474-4445.

Posted in Cancellation of Removal, Criminal Defense, Immigration, Immigration Reform

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Customs and Border Protection Officials Quiz Nigerian Software Engineer

By Peek & Toland on June 21, 2017

Interrogations by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials have dominated the news in recent months as the federal government imposed travel bans and clamped down on refugees.

The new reality means it’s more difficult to get into the United States, even if you have the correct documentation.

The story of Celestine Omin, a Nigerian engineer, is a case in point. Nigeria was not on the list of the seven predominantly Muslim nations named in President Trump’s first executive order. It was not in the list of six nations in the revised order announced in March.

Customs and border officials interviewed Nigerian software engineer

Customs and Border officials interrogated Nigerian software engineer

That didn’t prevent Omin being subjected to a long interrogation at the hands of U.S Customs and Border Protection.

The 28-year-old software engineer left Lagos, Nigeria in February to make his first trip to the United States.

He was working for a startup called Andela that connects leading talent in Africa with the United States. Less than one percent of applicants are accepted for the program backed by Facebook. The start-up wanted Omin to create a JavaScript application for emerging markets. He traveled on a short-term visa.

When he landed in the United States, Customs and Border Protection took Omin aside and started to interrogate him.

The border agent escorted him into a small room and told him to sit down. He waited another hour until a different customs officer came in, according to media reports.

He was asked the following question by a U.S. Customs and Border Protection official, according to CNN.

“Write a function to check if a Binary Search Tree is balanced.”

He was told that he didn’t look like an engineer. The official asked him to take a test to prove it, according to Andela. He was given a white sheet of paper and two very difficult computer science questions to answer.

Omin said he went for 24 hours without sleep. The questions seemed opaque and open to more than one answer. He said officials told him his answers were incorrect.

Customs and Border Protection Officials Carried out Three-Hour Interrogation

After three hours of interrogation and a call between U.S. Customs and Border Protection and Andela cofounder Christina Sass, Omin allowed to go. In a subsequent statement to CNNTech, Customs and Border Protection said it does not administer written tests to discover a reason for travel.

In the wake of the controversial executive orders imposing travel bans, Customs and Border Protection officials stand accused of other inappropriate acts concerning foreign and U.S. nationals.

On 5 February 2017, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) scientist Sidd Bikkannavar, who is US born, claimed on Facebook he was detained by Customs and Border Protection officials. He was returning to the U.S. from Chile. He claimed the officials took his phone and demanded access to its stored data.

If you are traveling in or out of the United States on a visa, a green card, or any other immigrant certification, it’s more important than ever to have all of your documentation on you. Find out more about work-based visas here, or contact our Austin immigration lawyers at (512) 474-4445.


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The Merit-Based Immigration System – How It Might Work

By Peek & Toland on June 16, 2017

A speech made to Congress by President Donald Trump has led to ongoing speculation about a merit-based immigration system.

When Trump laid out his immigration proposals in late February, he advocated a broader plan that echoed mainstream Republican thinking by putting the emphasis on skills and employability rather than family ties. The New York Times noted this move drew a parallel between Trump and former President George W. Bush.

Trump advocated a merit-based immigration system in his speech. He said:

“It’s a basic principle that those seeking to enter a country ought to be able to support themselves financially, yet in America, we do not enforce the rule, straining the very public resources that our poorest citizens rely on.”

Although it’s not the first time a merit-based immigration system has been advocated in Republican circles, some members of the GOP are skeptical. They fear it could harm the economy by keeping out farm workers, laborers, hotel workers and other low-skilled jobs. Traditionally immigrants have taken these jobs which are unattractive to Americans.

Donald Trump considers a merit-based immigration system

A merit-based immigration system could change the way immigrants are accepted in the United States

Trump has cited the Canadian system. Immigrants to Canada are awarded points based on their employment and educational backgrounds. Those who score the highest, get priority for admission.

While some Republicans are skeptical, the New York Times reported Democrats on the left fear a merit-based immigration system is a backdoor way of re-working America’s immigration laws to filter out people from some backgrounds from certain countries.

How a Merit-Based Immigration System Would Work

Most immigrants who are admitted to the United States are given entry based on their family ties. Less than a fifth are admitted via employment linked to their skills, while a small number are admitted as asylum seekers or refugees.

When U.S. citizens sponsor immediate family members they are not subjected to the caps experienced with employment-based visas. Legal permanent residents also apply for visas for spouses and children.

Of more than a million legal permanent residents who were admitted to the United States, 64 percent were immediate relatives of U.S. citizens or were sponsored by family members, the New York Times reported in 2014.

Just 15 percent received an employment-based preference and 13 percent were admitted as refugees or asylum seekers, according to the Migration Policy Institute.

If Canadian-style points based system is brought in, the most skilled and educated immigrants would get priority for admission.

An immigration proposal in 2007 that failed to make it out of the Senate, included a points-based system. Education and skills would have received more points than family relationships. Immigrants with family members living in the United States, either as green card holders or citizens, would have seen their visa preferences eroded. More employment-based visas would be granted under a merit-based system.

Recently, NPR spoke to Jessica Vaughan, director of Policy Studies at the Center for Immigration. The center favors less immigration. She said:

“It’s clear that if we were to change that mix by reducing the number of family-based immigrants, as has been proposed in recent legislation and – possibly that gives us the opportunity to increase the number of skill-based visas within the overall limits that we have now. That would be much more helpful.”

We also know a move to a merit-based immigration system would likely make it harder for families to be reunited here in Texas and elsewhere.

If you need help with an immigration matter in Austin, Round Rock, San Marcos, Bastrop, San Antonio, or Laredo, please do not hesitate to call us at (512) 474-4445.

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Five Ways Trump is Taking on Legal Immigration

By Peek & Toland on June 15, 2017

The Trump administration’s approach to undocumented immigrants is frequently in the news. Less well known, is how the new president is taking on legal immigration.

Trump has also sought to change the way the United States deals with documented immigration and people who arrive here on work visas.

The travel ban announced in March bans travel from six predominantly Muslim countries. New visas have been suspended for people from Iran, Syria, Somalia, Libya, Yemen and Sudan. The ban was challenged by states including Hawaii.

Statements and leaked draft memos, have added to speculation about how legal immigration could be curtailed, reported Mother Jones.

This is a complex area. The issue of visas and which one you should apply for was confusing before Trump was elected and a period of flux began. You can find out more about visas on our website. There are as many as 76 categories of visas. Many are temporary non-immigrant visas. There are also immigrant visas that provide a potential pathway to citizenship.

Five ways Trump is taking on legal immigration

Five ways Trump is taking on legal immigration

Here are how some visa holders or applicants will be impacted

F-1: Student Visas
An F-1 visa is necessary if you plan to attend a university in the United States or a college, high school, private elementary school, seminary or another academic institution.

Many students holding F visas were affected by the travel ban. Four thousand Iranian students were affected by the ban, according to Mother Jones. A report in Fortune estimates colleges in the United States stand to lose as much as $700 million annually without the students’ funds. Trump did not specifically address student visas during the election campaign. However, he called for an end of the J-1 visa program for visiting academics and professors.

H-1B Highly Skilled Worker Visas

The H-1B visa program is important to technology companies that allow foreigners who work in a “specialty occupation,” such as engineering, technology, business or mathematics. Visa recipients have the option to renew their visas for a further three years so long as they remain employed. The number of H-1B visas is capped at 85,000.

Trump’s stance on the H-1B visa has varied. He accused visa holders of taking American jobs and said he would end the use of the visa as a tool to give overseas workers cheap jobs. However, he has also said the visa brings talented people into the United States.

In March, immigration authorities announced the expedited processing of H-1B visas, which allowed skilled workers to pay more for faster approval to work in the United States, would no longer be available from April 3.

All applicants will have to wait the standard period to see if they have won the “lottery.” Under the temporary suspension, they will no longer be able to pay an additional $1,225 for a guaranteed answer after 15 days.  Restrictions may also be imposed on spouses and children of H-1B visa holders.

EB-5 Investor Visas

EB-5 visas are a form of legal immigration because those awarded them and their families can qualify for green cards. However, investors must pump at least $1 million into the economy, or $500,000 in deprived areas.

Proposed amendments from the Department of Homeland Security would raise these investment amounts to $1.8 million and from $500,000 to $1.35 million in deprived areas

The EB-5 program brought in high investment from nations such as China but critics claim it opens the door to money laundering and other security risks. In some cases, investors have lost their money and not qualified for a green card. Sens. Diane Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) have cosponsored a bill to end the program

H2: Seasonal worker visas

H2 visas allow U.S. companies to hire agricultural workers or other non-skilled workers like hotel staff on a seasonal basis provided that employers prove that they could not fill these position with citizens.

There are a limited number of these visas. So far, there are few indications that the system will be reformed.

O-1 Visas

These visas allow people of an extraordinary ability to come to the United States. Famous athletes, musicians and Nobel Prize winning scientists have been brought to the United States on the so-called artist or genius visas.

Trump’s travel ban would affect geniuses from the six specified countries. The Mother Jones article speculated it could impact the U.S. bid to host competitions like the 2024 Olympics.

If you need help in applying for a visa for yourself or a worker, please contact our experienced Austin visa lawyers today at (512) 474-4445.

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President Trump Offers Possible Undocumented Immigrant Reform

By Peek & Toland on June 14, 2017

The first raids of President Donald Trump’s term caused fear in Texas’ immigrant community as undocumented migrants without criminal records were deported. However, the president has also offered hope of undocumented immigrant reform.

In February, before his speech to Congress, Trump hinted at reform in comments to TV news anchors.

An article in The Texas Tribune alluded to his desire to reach a compromise over immigration. However, the speech itself contained few clues about immigration reform.

Trump’s speech was greeted enthusiastically by Republicans from Texas including Senator Ted Cruz.

However, U.S. Rep. Joaquin Castro, D-San Antonio, said the President’s message was a dark and divisive one, although was encouraged by reports of private comments made by Trump. The President suggested he favors a softening of his approach and undocumented immigrant reform.

Trump gives hints on undocumented immigrant reform

The president was short on specifics. However, reform could include ways of making life in the United States easier for undocumented immigrants who have not committed crimes. Allowing them to work was one plank of the immigration policies of Trump’s predecessor Barack Obama.

Castro said he hoped Trump would seek to reach a compromise on immigration.

Trump Gives Hints Behind Closed Doors on Undocumented Immigrant Reform

Commentators are divided on how significant Trump’s comments on reform will prove to be. During the election campaign, Trump stressed his opposition to President Obama’s deferred actions on immigration.

Obama’s reforms would have allowed about four million undocumented immigrants to remain in the United States and find work. It was challenged by a group of states and stalled in the U.S. Supreme Court.

Writing in the Boston Herald, Linda Chavez said Trump raised the possibility of an immigration reform. It would result in legal status for as many as 11 million undocumented immigrants. However, the comments were made in an off-the-record briefing.

The caveat would be these immigrants would not have committed serious crimes. The president also said he thought “dreamers,” whose parents brought them illegally to the United States as children, should be given a path to citizenship. While the President then apparently suggested to White House staff that this change of policy should be referenced in his speech to Congress, it was not.

Chavez and other commentators were left asking why the speech was not re-written or Trump did not make a characteristic departure from the script.

Rather than softening his stance on immigration, he doubled down on highlighting crimes committed by unlawful immigrants.

Undocumented immigrant reform remains a fluid situation now. If you or a family member needs advice on an immigration matter, please call our lawyers at Peek & Toland, PLLC at (512) 474-4445.

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Raids Spur Undocumented Immigrants to Seek U.S. Passports for their Children

By Peek & Toland on June 13, 2017

As ICE raids intensified in Texas in recent months, the lines at passport offices filled up with immigrants seeking to get U.S. passports for their American-born children.

The surge of undocumented immigrants at passport offices in Texas and elsewhere was noted by the Texas Tribune.

The rush to get U.S. passports comes on the back of Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids in Texas. Although they have targeted undocumented immigrants with criminal records, others have been caught up and deported.

The arrests of 51 people in the Austin area in February, sparked an outcry, The Statesman reported. It was part of a national operation that led to the arrests of 680 immigrants who the federal agency deemed threats to public safety.

How immigrants are seeking U.S. passports for children

Migrants seek U.S. passports for their children

The arrests marked a shift from previous policy.  ICE agents picked up more undocumented immigrants without criminal records than in raids under the Obama administration. USA Today reported about 74 percent of people arrested had committed crimes, compared with a figure of 90 percent under raids during the latter stages of the Obama administration.

Immigration officials said Operation Cross Check led to the arrest of 23 people with criminal convictions and some violent offenders.

The Tribune article noted an increase in applications for U.S. passports across Texas.

At Dallas’s Salvadoran consulate, Consul General Jose Mario Mejía Barrera reported a 25 percent increase in applications for U.S. passports and child registries in February alone. The consulate serves approximately 150,000 Salvadorans in North Texas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma. Barrera said:

“There’s uncertainty and worry among the community. People are realizing they have to file the right paperwork. Children who are born here, with Salvadoran moms or dads, are being registered so they have dual citizenship.”

A similar trend was noted at the Mexican consulate in Austin. Carlos Gonzalez Gutiérrez, the Consul General, reported an increase in applications for U.S. passports and birth certificates since Donald Trump won the presidential election in November. He said the recent round-ups of undocumented immigrants in Austin alarmed immigrants and more non-criminal immigrants were detained ICE agents than previously.

The consulate organized its first custody session to help undocumented Mexicans to understand guardianship. Many are contemplating leaving children with documented immigrants if they are deported. Immigrants have also asked about property rights because they are concerned about their houses being taken away.

If you or a family member is facing deportation, our Austin cancellation of removal lawyers can help you. See our resources here. We can also provide advice on documentation for citizenship applications. Call us at (512) 474-4445.

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