As anticipated there is a lot of debate on the floor of the Senate and in Committee. The major news today was that the Senate allowed publication of the amendments to "Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act" (S. 744) before the bill goes to Committee. Of major concern to our clients is the fine that will have to be paid in order to register to obtain a "Blue Card," which is the first step towards the "pathway to citizenship."
In my capacity as Chair of the Immigration Law Section of the Federal Bar Association, I am privy to information which the general public may not have access. I have an opportunity for this "inside look" at immigration during the Leadership Luncheons that the Immigration Law Section in conjunction with the local D.C. Chapter to the FBA hosts every third Wednesday of the month. Keep an eye on this blog and our News section to this site for future luncheons dates and locations.
During one of these Luncheons, fines and penalties were discussed. The consensus was that the fine will be between $3,000 - $5,000. I was surprised when the "Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act" (S. 744)" was first introduced and stated a fine of a mere $500 to register for the "Blue Card." The amendments that were published today render the fines more in line with I had anticipated -- $1,500 for the first "Blue Card" registration and $1,500 for each renewal in addition to the fine for applying for Lawful Permanent Residence after 10 years.
There are many benefits to being an FBA Immigration Law Section member. I am honored to Chair this Section.