Biden tries to transform the immigration system
Since President Joe Biden took office in January 2021, his administration has focused, among many other things, on repairing the damage done by the Trump administration to the immigration system and permanently rescinding restrictive policies that affect immigrant populations, both those who already reside within the US and those who plan to come to the country.
Biden has removed more than 15 limitations implemented by the previous administration on the immigration sector, which substantially hindered existing immigration processes. Adding to that, the current administration is trying to approach immigration enforcement in a more humane way to restructure the US’ detention and deportation system.
The Biden administration is aware that Trump made more than 400 changes on immigration through all kinds of executive actions. Thus, because President Biden plans to reform the entire immigration system, his administration faces an unprecedented challenge, and achieving this goal could take many months, even years.
It is important to note that many of the Trump administration’s policies are almost invisible and affect specific cases of immigrants seeking international protection through political asylum or other humanitarian programs. Therefore, the Biden administration must thoroughly review the depth of Trump’s changes on immigration.
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Trump leaves deep marks in immigration courts
One of Trump’s legacies is related with immigration courts. The Trump administration hired approximately 346 immigration judges out of 520 lifetime positions available in the US immigration courts, which is equivalent to two-thirds of immigration judges nationwide.
Many cases reviewed in immigration courts are political asylum applications, which is a humanitarian program available to immigrants who request protection in the US while trying to flee from precarious situations such as persecution, violence, abuse or war.
It is no secret that former President Trump was not entirely on board with humanitarian programs and planned to replace current processes with a merit-based immigration system. Hence, his administration tried to considerably narrow alternatives available to the most vulnerable immigrant populations.
The fact that the Trump administration hired a large number of immigration judges increases the deportation rate, especially when it comes to political asylum applications. In fact, official figures reveal that judges hired by Trump have rejected 69% of the applications reviewed, while judges hired by previous administrations have rejected 58% of the applications.
In 2018, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions attended a class for newly hired immigration judges by the Trump administration and openly stated that, “The vast majority of asylum claims are not valid (…) the number of illegal aliens and the number of baseless claims will fall.”
As we can see, the Biden administration faces great challenges in reforming the entire immigration system and that is why it must approach the most problematic immigration issues assertively and cautiously.
The best option to migrate safely is to follow the advice of experts
We understand that starting an immigration process requires constant dedication and expert help. Our team is highly qualified to guide you through your immigration journey in the US, so please don’t hesitate to contact us for a FREE Phone Consultation with one of our expert immigration attorneys.
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