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Trump Announces Immigration Reform Proposal

On May 16, 2019, President Trump announced an immigration reform proposal addressing legal immigration options and did not address undocumented immigrants already living in the U.S. or provide any guidance for Dreamers. The proposal focuses on highly-skilled immigrants by creating a merit-based point system and significantly decreasing family-based immigration. Specifically, the president encouraged Congress to develop and pass legislation to secure the border, protect U.S. workers, attract skilled immigrants, unify families, provide labor supply for critical industries and preserve humanitarian values with the following provisions:

  • Develop a point system for qualified migrants, based on extraordinary talent, professional and specialized vocations or exceptional academic performance
    • Eligibility points may be increased by taking U.S. civics courses, passing criminal background checks, establishing English proficiency and demonstrating employment offers
  • Replace random green card allocation with uniform criteria that prioritizes highly skilled students and workers
  • Prioritize spouses and children of U.S. citizens in the family-based immigration system
  • Construct portions of the border wall in high priority locations to secure borders

This announcement is solely a request for Congress to act and does not change current immigration law or create new immigration opportunities at this time. We will monitor developments and provide updates if immigration reform progresses. 

© 2020 Varnum LLP


About this Author

Kimberly A. Clarke, Varnum, Immigration Lawyer

Kim focuses her practice on immigration matters, including nonimmigrant petitions, both employment- and family-based permanent residence applications, expatriation and foreign visa issues. She has developed a strong background in the area of worker verification issues and managed clients through internal and agency Form I-9 audits, USICE compliance investigations and civil criminal charges.

In addition, Kim maintains a specialty practice of consultation with agricultural clients and handles various agricultural labor and employment issues such as compliance with...

Yvonne Kupfermann Employment Lawyer Varnum Law Firm Grand Rapids

Yvonne focuses her practice primarily on employment and family-based immigration in addition to general corporate matters. She assists clients with employment and family-based permanent residence petitions, including the labor certification process, visas for extraordinary ability, and multinational managers and executives petitions. She focuses on visa processing, waivers, DACA and citizenship matters. Additionally, she has experience in general corporate matters, including LLC formation.

Nina A. Thekdi, immigration lawyer, Varnum

Nina focuses her practice on business and family-based immigration matters.  Her experience encompasses nonimmigrant visa petitions including H-1B visas, L-1A and L-1B visas, TN visas under the NAFTA treaty, and O-1 visas. She also assists clients with employment-based permanent residence petitions including the labor certifications process, EB-1 extraordinary ability, EB-1 outstanding professor and researchers and EB-1 multinational managers and executives petitions; family-based permanent residence applications; naturalization applications; and foreign visa issues.   ...