Business and the Workforce

What role do immigrants play in American business and the American workforce? Immigrants work in a range of skilled positions in the U.S. and start businesses that boost the American economy. Learn more about immigrant entrepreneurship and workforce participation.

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June 11, 2018
Some confusion exists regarding the economic aspects of family-based immigration. To help unpack those aspects, this report focuses on one of them—namely, the earnings of family-based immigrants.
April 6, 2018
This fact sheet provides an overview of the H-1B visa category and petition process, addresses the myths perpetuated about the H-1B visa category, and highlights the key contributions H-1B workers...
March 26, 2018
Temporary workers—such as those in H-1B status—typically can bring their spouses and children with them to the United States in what is called H-4 status. This fact sheet provides an overview of the...
December 14, 2017
This wage calculation is at the heart of the employment-based immigration system Congress devised to protect U.S. workers from unfair competition, while refraining from micromanaging the hiring...
September 13, 2017
This fact sheet describes the legal avenues in the United States available to promising entrepreneurs, as well as some of the barriers they face securing immigration status through these paths.
August 11, 2017
The Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act (RAISE Act) or S. 354 would mark a sweeping overhaul of the U.S. immigration system. It would significantly reduce levels of legal...
March 8, 2017
There are nearly 12 million immigrant (foreign-born) women workers in the United States today, comprising just over 7 percent of the total labor force.
November 18, 2016
From construction workers to gardeners, many low-wage immigrant workers are in fact quite skilled.
September 13, 2016
Current U.S. immigration law provides several paths for foreign workers to enter the United States for employment purposes on a temporary or permanent basis. This fact sheet provides basic...
May 26, 2016
The Exchange Visitor Program (EVP) initially brought scholars to the United States to teach or conduct research. Today, there are 14 categories of programs through which EVP participants can teach,...

On behalf of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the American Immigration Council filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) challenging U.S. Citizenship and...

February 28, 2017
The Council filed an amicus brief in a case pending before the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO), an administrative body at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that reviews denials of most employment-based visa petitions.

On behalf of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the Council, in cooperation with Hughes Socol Piers Resnick & Dym, Ltd., filed a lawsuit against USCIS and DHS seeking the...

Faced with increasing reports from immigration lawyers of EAD adjudication delays, the Council and several partners filed this lawsuit against USCIS and DHS.
December 15, 2014
The Council, with AILA, filed an amicus brief arguing that a district court has jurisdiction to review procedures followed by USCIS to revoke an employment-based visa petition. Amici argue that INA § 242(a)(2)(B), which limits judicial review over certain discretionary decisions, does not preclude review over the question of whether USCIS was required to provide notice of the visa petition revocation proceedings to the beneficiary. This is particularly true where, as in this case, the beneficiary had utilized the “porting” provision of INA § 204(j) to change employers more than 2 ½ years earlier, but USCIS issued its notice of intent to revoke only to the former employer and revoked the petition when the former employer did not respond.
Valorem, an IT consulting company, petitioned to employ a software developer for three years in H-1B status as part of a project development team at its office. Initially, USCIS denied the petition, but later – after Valorem, represented by AILA member Susan Bond, filed suit – approved it for one year.
August 29, 2014
The Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals (BALCA), the administrative body at the Department of Labor that reviews denials of PERM labor certifications, concluded that the Certifying Officer (CO) had the discretion, but not the obligation, to request missing documentation. BALCA failed to address arguments made by the Council and AILA in their amicus brief: that due process and fundamental fairness, as well as the PERM regulatory structure, require the CO to request supplemental documentation when the employer’s compliance with documentation requirements is evident from the record.
November 7, 2013
The Council and AILA filed an amicus brief in an en banc case pending before BALCA, an administrative body at the Department of Labor that reviews denials of PERM labor certifications. The case turned on the proper interpretation of a regulation which requires employers to notify certain laid-off U.S. employees about new job opportunities before the employers are permitted to hire foreign workers. The brief focused on the agency’s failure to provide fair warning before applying a new, more restrictive interpretation of the notification requirement.
On behalf of AILA, the American Immigration Council, in cooperation with counsel at Steptoe & Johnson LLP, filed a FOIA lawsuit against DHS and USCIS in July 2010 seeking the public release of records concerning agency policies and procedures related to fraud investigations in the H-1B program.
On July 17, 2007, the American Immigration Council was poised to file a lawsuit alleging that the federal government’s refusal to accept tens of thousands of applications for green cards (and discouragement of thousands of other workers from even applying) violated federal statutes, regulations and policies, as well as the U.S. Constitution. Many of these applicants had waited in line for years and were following the government’s rules to obtain a green card. The suit would have argued that the government must comply with its own regulations and policies and accept these adjustment of status (“green card”) applications.
August 20, 2018
This Practice Advisory has information practitioners need to assess whether filing suit in federal court is the right option for challenging an employment-based petition denial.
February 13, 2017
This Practice Advisory provides a broad overview of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), including how to make a FOIA request and how to appeal an inadequate response. It discusses the...
September 26, 2016
This Practice Advisory discusses whether and how a person can get review of a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services decision in federal court if he or she did not appeal the decision to the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO). The Advisory addresses the Supreme Court case Darby v. Cisneros, holding that a plaintiff is not required to exhaust non-mandatory administrative remedies in certain situations, and how it may apply to cases involving appeals to the AAO.
July 27, 2016
This Practice Tip analyzes the pros and cons of appealing to the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) following the denial of an employment-based visa petition.
May 25, 2016
This Practice Tip explains how practitioners can turn a Request for Evidence (RFE) into an opportunity to strengthen the administrative record through a thoughtful and thorough response.
April 1, 2016
This Practice Tip outlines how you can build a strong administrative record to set the stage for challenging the denial of a client's visa petition in federal court.
November 6, 2015

This Practice Advisory provides basic information about mandamus actions and suggests strategies and practice tips for bringing a mandamus action against the Department of Labor (DOL).

June 17, 2014
Litigants who are successful in their federal court cases against the government may be able to recover attorneys’ fees and costs under the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA). The American Immigration Council and National Immigration Project have reissued their Practice Advisory on EAJA. The Advisory discusses the statutory requirements for eligibility and other procedural and substantive aspects of filing a fee application under the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA).
June 20, 2013
This Practice Advisory discusses the primary issues involved in a suit brought under the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) to challenge an unlawful agency action. The Advisory provides examples of how these issues have been decided in immigration cases and arguments that can be made to meet the various procedural requirements for an APA action.
May 13, 2010
This Practice Advisory addresses who is the proper respondent-defendant and recipient for service of process in immigration-related litigation in district court. The Advisory covers whom to sue in specific types of immigration-related actions, including mandamus, Federal Tort Claims Acts (and administrative claims), Bivens, and habeas actions.
October 30, 2018

Many of the billion-dollar startup companies in the United States, such as Uber and SpaceX, would not exist—or would have been created in another country—if U.S. immigration policies had not given...

October 10, 2018

If the U.S. government closes the door to highly skilled foreign workers, other countries stand ready to embrace their contributions. For instance, while the Trump administration contemplates an...

September 20, 2018

Every year, the Census Bureau releases new data from its American Community Survey (ACS), which contains a wealth of information about the characteristics of the U.S. population. Without fail,...

August 22, 2018

Many immigrants bring advanced expertise when they come to the United States, but those skills are often underutilized. Due to a range of complex factors, such as professional credentialing and...

July 13, 2018

Kitchens, restaurants, and housekeeping departments in high-end resorts are often staffed with foreign seasonal workers, who arrive into the United States during peak vacation months. American...

July 12, 2018

To build America’s competitive edge over other nations attempting to attract global talent, the Obama administration issued the International Entrepreneur Rule (IER) in 2014. This regulation...

June 8, 2018

More than 100 workers were arrested at a gardening and landscaping company in northern Ohio on Wednesday, marking another massive employment crackdown under the Trump administration. This raid...

May 31, 2018

The Trump administration continued its shortsighted attack on businesses this week, indicating it will end a rule allowing foreign entrepreneurs to grow start-up companies in the United States....

May 23, 2018

In a rare show of bipartisanship, 130 members of Congress sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Kirsten Nielsen urging her to maintain the current regulation granting...

May 22, 2018

When immigrants bring their skills to the U.S. labor market, everyone—immigrants and native-born workers alike—benefit from their company. Research has repeatedly shown that native-born workers...

June 12, 2018
Through analysis of data from the decennial census and administrative data from the Immigration and Naturalization Service, this special report examines the earnings gains over time of all immigrants, as well as the earnings gains experienced by family-based immigrants compared to employment-based immigrants.
September 19, 2017
Entrepreneurs, startup companies, and the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) filed a lawsuit in federal court today challenging the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) delay of the International Entrepreneur Rule (IER).
May 23, 2016

shington D.C. - The American Immigration Council (Council) and the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) have teamed up on a lawsuit against the U.S.

March 17, 2015

Washington D.C. - Today, the American Immigration Council's Executive Director, Benjamin Johnson, testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee about the integral role immigration plays in

September 17, 2014

Washington, D.C.

November 8, 2013

Yesterday, the American Immigration Council, in collaboration with AILA, filed an amicus brief

November 19, 2012

For Immediate Release

LAC Wins Release of H-1B Fraud Documents for AILA

June 9, 2011

Washington D.C. - Today, the Brookings Institution released a new report,

October 30, 2018

Many of the billion-dollar startup companies in the United States, such as Uber and SpaceX, would not exist—or would have been created in another country—if U.S. immigration policies had not given...

October 10, 2018

If the U.S. government closes the door to highly skilled foreign workers, other countries stand ready to embrace their contributions. For instance, while the Trump administration contemplates an...

September 20, 2018

Every year, the Census Bureau releases new data from its American Community Survey (ACS), which contains a wealth of information about the characteristics of the U.S. population. Without fail,...

August 22, 2018

Many immigrants bring advanced expertise when they come to the United States, but those skills are often underutilized. Due to a range of complex factors, such as professional credentialing and...

August 20, 2018
This Practice Advisory has information practitioners need to assess whether filing suit in federal court is the right option for challenging an employment-based petition denial.
July 13, 2018

Kitchens, restaurants, and housekeeping departments in high-end resorts are often staffed with foreign seasonal workers, who arrive into the United States during peak vacation months. American...

July 12, 2018

To build America’s competitive edge over other nations attempting to attract global talent, the Obama administration issued the International Entrepreneur Rule (IER) in 2014. This regulation...

On behalf of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA), the American Immigration Council filed a lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) challenging U.S. Citizenship and...

June 12, 2018
Through analysis of data from the decennial census and administrative data from the Immigration and Naturalization Service, this special report examines the earnings gains over time of all immigrants, as well as the earnings gains experienced by family-based immigrants compared to employment-based immigrants.
June 11, 2018
Some confusion exists regarding the economic aspects of family-based immigration. To help unpack those aspects, this report focuses on one of them—namely, the earnings of family-based immigrants.

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