Foreign nationals in New York who have been waiting years for a family- or employment-based green card could be sent to the back of the line or made ineligible altogether under a proposed Trump administration policy. The new policy, which must be rewritten into legislative language and approved by Congress, would eliminate the current backlog for green cards and force everyone to reapply under a new points-based systems.
While wait times could be reduced for some, there is no guarantee that all foreign nationals waiting for green cards would have enough points under the proposed system. The administration has said those already waiting would receive points, but no new details have been released about this. Most family immigration categories will be eliminated, and it is anticipated that Democrats will oppose the proposal when it reaches Congress.
Businesses face the prospect of being saddled for decades with an unworkable system for hiring if the system does not work out. This kind of system revamp does not happen often, with the last major one occurring in 1990. That set the current per-country limits for green cards as well as capping employment-based green cards and H-1B visas. Although these caps are already inadequate for the demand, there is no guarantee the new proposal will improve the situation.
Foreign nationals who are waiting for or considering a family immigration visa or whose loved ones are may want to contact an attorney to learn more about the proposed changes. These could include fiance visas as well as visas for spouses, children, parents, and other family members. While it is unclear what may happen with the policy, an attorney may be able to keep people informed if changes are made. The attorney may also be able to assist in navigating through the existing system if it remains in place.