Bloggings on Immigration Law and Policy


Greg Siskind

Gang of Eight Agrees on Path to Citizenship

From the LA Times:

Eight senators who have spent weeks trying to write a bipartisan bill
to overhaul immigration laws have privately agreed on the most
contentious part of the draft how to offer legal status to the
nation's 11 million illegal immigrants.

According to aides familiar with the closed-door negotiations, the
bill would require illegal immigrants to register with Homeland Security
Department authorities, file federal income taxes for their time in
America and pay a still-to-be-determined fine. They also must have a
clean law enforcement record.

Once granted probationary legal status, immigrants would be allowed
to work but would be barred from receiving federal public benefits,
including food stamps, family cash assistance, Medicaid and unemployment insurance.

The eight Senators still have not decided how long it will be before immigrants could file for permanent residency. The President has proposed eight years. The LA Times reports that the Senate will likely make the path at least ten years.

Other unresolved issues:

- how many visas for highly skilled workers

- how the guest worker program will work

- exit tracking of immigrants

- how much money can be allocated for border enforcement.

Finally, the goal of introducing the bill by March 22nd appears to be slipping and early April may now be the time frame.

About The Author Greg Siskind is a partner in Siskind Susser's Memphis, Tennessee, office. After graduating magna cum laude from Vanderbilt University, he received his Juris Doctorate from the University of Chicago. Mr. Siskind is a member of AILA, a board member of the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, and a member of the ABA, where he serves on the LPM Publishing Board as Marketing Vice Chairman. He is the author of several books, including the J Visa Guidebook and The Lawyer's Guide to Marketing on the Internet. Mr. Siskind practices all areas of immigration law, specializing in immigration matters of the health care and technology industries. He can be reached by email at

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author(s) alone and should not be imputed to ILW.COM.