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2014 DHHS Poverty Guidelines for Immigration (I-864) Affidavit of Support

posted Apr 16, 2014, 11:43 AM by Randall Drew

Every year about this time -- the new poverty guidelines are put in place for determining the household income that must be shown in order to sponsor an immigrant relative. The poverty guidelines are actually created by The Department Health & Human Services. US Citizenship & Immigration Services then repurposes them by multiplying by 1.25 to get their 125% of poverty numbers.

 Household size     2  -  $19,662  Necessary Income
                            3  -  $24,737
                            4  -  $29,812

The rest of the information can be found on the form I-864p a copy is attached below.

Last call for Obama on immigration (USA Today)

posted Apr 8, 2014, 10:28 AM by Randall Drew

Last call for Obama on immigration

On Wednesday, Rep. Luis Gutierrez, D-Ill., reminded lawmakers that the clock is ticking on immigration reform. "After almost a year with no serious movement forward on immigration reform in the House," he said, "I am beginning to wonder whether the Republicans will get serious about immigration before they run out of time." Gutierrez warned Republicans that President Obama could soon take unilateral action. "Do you think he will sit by and do nothing just because you are doing nothing?"

Gutierrez is right. Not only is the window rapidly closing on any possibility of reform over the next few years, it is also shutting on the GOP's long-term viability as a national party. And after repeatedly refusing to act on immigration, House Republicans cannot complain if President Obama decides to move ahead without them.

The stubbornness of House Republicans on immigration is shameful considering the efforts of so many others to make reform a reality. Immigrant advocates assembled a coalition of labor, business, and religious leaders to push for an overhaul of our broken system. The Senate passed the bill put forward by the bipartisan "Gang of 8." House Democrats came up with their own immigration bill, and attempted the long-shot maneuver of a discharge petition to force a vote on it.

~follow the link to see the rest of the story 

Jeb Bush - illegal immigration is an "act of love"

posted Apr 8, 2014, 9:35 AM by Randall Drew

YouTube Video


Well now, that is an interesting way to start a Presidential primary campaign. The substance of what Mr. Bush is saying -- that illegal immigration is against the law, but that the venom and anger associated with the issue is out of proportion -- is entirely correct. Comprehensive immigration reform should allow for some commensurate penalties for breaking the law. Not everyone who wants to come here to live and work can be allowed to do so (legally or otherwise); yet not everyone who has come here without permission (or stayed longer than permitted) should be forced to leave. The key is to strike the right balance for the United States, its communities, businesses and families. It is not an easy task -- that is why immigration law reform is complicated and why we have a giant bureaucracy of immigration benefit adjudicators, law enforcement officers and administrative courts. Implementing this complicated system to do the most good for the most people is hard work. It could be made a little easier with the right reforms (which have been stalled by Congress since 2001). 

Some would like it to be simple -- either  they all must go or it might as well be considered an amnesty and they can all stay. Neither of those approaches will work to the benefit of this country. For all the faults I might find with the Bush family political dynasty -- this is one thing they seem to understand.



DLO in the Hippo....

posted Apr 3, 2014, 1:09 PM by Randall Drew

Drew Law Office, PLLC has started our first ever print advertising campaign with a nice little ad in the Hippo, a weekly news and entertainment tabloid from the Hippo Press here in Manchester, NH. We always have a copy at the office because it has the rundown of all the shows & concerts and all the events going on at local restaurants, pubs and clubs.

It is a free publication available all over Southern New Hampshire and the Merrimack Valley of Massachusetts. You can even view it for free online: http://www.e-pages.dk/thehippo/346/  is this week's issue (first week of April 2014) enjoy!

House Democrats File Petition To Force Immigration Vote

posted Mar 27, 2014, 11:49 AM by Randall Drew

http://thinkprogress.org/immigration/2014/03/26/3419040/house-democrats-introduce-immigration-discharge-petition/

Many reports in the media describe this as a longshot measure or that it is doomed to fail. They may ultimately be found correct -- but that is something of a self-fulfilling prophecy. If people contact their Congressional Representatives and tell them they want to see the procrastinating stop and to get this done -- it can be passed. The bill itself has 199 co-sponsors and they only need 218 signatures for the discharge petition. Voting yes would bring the bill to the floor for a vote -- it would still have to pass. There aren't 20 Republicans in the House who could be convinced to hold a vote on the bi-partisan bill that passed the Senate last Summer!?!

New Hampshire's Representatives are already signed on ... if you have family that live in another state that are represented by a Republican -- ask them to call their House member and get them to sign up!

House GOP Releases Immigration Reform Principles

posted Jan 31, 2014, 8:05 AM by Randall Drew

This is pretty thin stuff considering that immigration reform has been in the works in some form or other for 13 years -- and the Senate has already passed a comprehensive immigration reform bill last summer. However, if DREAMers can get on a path to citizenship, and most others can get to a "legally admitted" status -- I think that would be enough for most advocates. 

Why? Because obtaining any status of lawful admission can lead to permanent resident status if there is an employer or family member with the ability to petition for the immigrant. 

From the mid 1990s - 2000 we managed this by using the 245(i) program in which people who had entered without inspection or those who had overstayed their visas could "get right" with the law if they had a willing petitioner and paid a $1000.00 penalty fee. The GOP proposals are not far from that -- and could have been agreed to a decade ago. The legal contortions the Senate had to go through to come up with its comprehensive immigration bill -- were largely done with an eye to getting to a bill the House could support.

By the way, a Legislator saying that a Bill is too long, or that no one has read it or understands it is not an acceptable excuse. Maybe if it was something that was just introduced a week ago and is being rushed to a vote; but the Senate Bill has been around since the summer and immigration reform has been percolating since 2001. That's your job -- so do it! 

On Thursday, Congressional Republicans released a one-page document, obtained by The New York Times, outlining their blueprint for immigration overhaul.

Standards for Immigration Reform

PREAMBLE

RELATED COVERAGE

  • Speaker John A. Boehner at the House Republican leadership’s annual retreat in Cambridge, Md., on Thursday.

    Republicans’ Immigration Blueprint Leaves Party at Odds and Democrats HopefulJAN. 30, 2014

Our nation’s immigration system is broken and our laws are not being enforced. Washington’s failure to fix them is hurting our economy and jeopardizing our national security. The overriding purpose of our immigration system is to promote and further America’s national interests and that is not the case today. The serious problems in our immigration system must be solved, and we are committed to working in a bipartisan manner to solve them. But they cannot be solved with a single, massive piece of legislation that few have read and even fewer understand, and therefore, we will not go to a conference with the Senate’s immigration bill. The problems in our immigration system must be solved through a step-by-step, common-sense approach that starts with securing our country’s borders, enforcing our laws, and implementing robust enforcement measures. These are the principals guiding us in that effort.

Border Security and Interior Enforcement Must Come First

It is the fundamental duty of any government to secure its borders, and the United States is failing in this mission. We must secure our borders now and verify that they are secure. In addition, we must ensure now that when immigration reform is enacted, there will be a zero tolerance policy for those who cross the border illegally or overstay their visas in the future. Faced with a consistent pattern of administrations of both parties only selectively enforcing our nation’s immigration laws, we must enact reform that ensures that a President cannot unilaterally stop immigration enforcement.

Implement Entry-Exit Visa Tracking System

A fully functioning Entry-Exit system has been mandated by eight separate statutes over the last 17 years. At least three of these laws call for this system to be biometric, using technology to verify identity and prevent fraud. We must implement this system so we can identify and track down visitors who abuse our laws.

Employment Verification and Workplace Enforcement

In the 21st century it is unacceptable that the majority of employees have their work eligibility verified through a paper based system wrought with fraud. It is past time for this country to fully implement a workable electronic employment verification system.

Reforms to the Legal Immigration System

For far too long, the United States has emphasized extended family members and pure luck over employment-based immigration. This is inconsistent with nearly every other developed country. Every year thousands of foreign nationals pursue degrees at America’s colleges and universities, particularly in high skilled fields. Many of them want to use their expertise in U.S. industries that will spur economic growth and create jobs for Americans. When visas aren’t available, we end up exporting this labor and ingenuity to other countries. Visa and green card allocations need to reflect the needs of employers and the desire for these exceptional individuals to help grow our economy.

The goal of any temporary worker program should be to address the economic needs of the country and to strengthen our national security by allowing for realistic, enforceable, usable, legal paths for entry into the United States. Of particular concern are the needs of the agricultural industry, among others. It is imperative that these temporary workers are able to meet the economic needs of the country and do not displace or disadvantage American workers.

Youth

One of the great founding principles of our country was that children would not be punished for the mistakes of their parents. It is time to provide an opportunity for legal residence and citizenship for those who were brought to this country as children through no fault of their own, those who know no other place as home. For those who meet certain eligibility standards, and serve honorably in our military or attain a college degree, we will do just that.

Individuals Living Outside the Rule of Law

Our national and economic security depend on requiring people who are living and working here illegally to come forward and get right with the law. There will be no special path to citizenship for individuals who broke our nation’s immigration laws – that would be unfair to those immigrants who have played by the rules and harmful to promoting the rule of law. Rather, these persons could live legally and without fear in the U.S., but only if they were willing to admit their culpability, pass rigorous background checks, pay significant fines and back taxes, develop proficiency in English and American civics, and be able to support themselves and their families (without access to public benefits). Criminal aliens, gang members, and sex offenders and those who do not meet the above requirements will not be eligible for this program. Finally, none of this can happen before specific enforcement triggers have been implemented to fulfill our promise to the American people that from here on, our immigration laws will indeed be enforced.

Attorney Jillian C. LaCroix has article published in NH Bar News!

posted Jan 16, 2014, 9:36 AM by Randall Drew

Jillian's article "Criminal Law: Out of the Store & Out of the Country" appears in the January 15, 2014 issue of the New Hampshire Bar News. A link to the article appears below and has also been reblogged on our NH Immigration Lawyer Blog (the second link below)


Immigration reform w/o path to citizenship is a bad idea.

posted Jan 8, 2014, 10:32 AM by Randall Drew

Over the past two weeks, a number of politicians, think tank opinion writers and media outlets have started floating the idea of passing immigration reform -- as long as it doesn't grant a pathway to citizenship. This bad idea is based on two flawed premises about the process and the effect of immigration reform. First, (mostly GOP) members of the House of Representatives oppose adopting the already passed Senate immigration bill S. 744 because they think it will create large numbers of new Democratic voters. Here is a quote taken from an ABC news story from yesterday:
 
"Is the sticking point going to be we have to have immediate voting privileges for those who came here illegally?," Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a Republican who voted against the Senate immigration bill, said Sunday on ABC. "If the Democrats are willing to come halfway, I think we can pass something, some meaningful reform that would help the 11 million who are here."  http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/obama-congress-grasp-immigration-21444316?page=2

The Senate bill would grant Registered Provisional Immigrant (RPI) status, that status could be upgraded to Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status after ten years. Then, after three years as an LPR the person could apply for Naturalization (Citizenship) that process can take anywhere from a few months to over a year. So if by immediate voting privileges you mean after thirteen years ...well, then I suppose we have an "honest" disagreement. It is one thing to be afraid of the "immigrant voter" --- but after 13 years, if you haven't brought them on board with your political party -- you probably don't deserve to.

The other problem is that we, as US citizens, supposedly want new members of our society to assimilate to our cultural way of life. If 11 million people are allowed to remain here, not as second class citizens, but rather as second class non-citizens with no means of ever becoming citizens with full rights -- what incentives would they have to assimilate? How much are they likely to care about a country that doesn't consider them worthy of being included as full members? 

IMMIGRANT OF THE YEAR 2013: David "Papi" Ortiz, Boston Red Sox

posted Dec 16, 2013, 7:23 AM by Randall Drew

A previous Immigrant of the DayBoston Red Sox slugger David "Papi"Ortiz was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2013 World Series.  He is the ImmigrationProf 2013 Immigrant of the Year.

Could you pass a US citizenship test? CSMonitor let's you try.

posted Dec 5, 2013, 8:19 AM by Randall Drew

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/2011/0104/Could-you-pass-a-US-citizenship-test/Who-signs-bills

This link should take you to a pop quiz consisting of questions that intending citizens may be asked as part of the Naturalization exam. Good Luck!

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