The Trump administration recently announced changes to the way in which green-card applications and requests for asylum are evaluated by federal agencies. These changes could have a long-term effect on the prospects of those already in the United States and seeking the opportunity to remain legally within our borders. The deadline for public comments on the new “public charge” policy is December 10, 2018. For many immigrants, however, this proposed change has already had an impact on their activities and their quality of life.
The Public Charge Policy
The new guidelines will require immigration authorities to consider the public assistance received by visa applicants and asylum seekers when deciding on their cases. While public charge policies have been part of the consideration process for many years, the types of public assistance included in this policy have been expanded to include Medicaid, housing programs, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and Medicare Part D. Fears about this policy, however, have prompted immigrants to refrain from applying for a wide range of assistance programs.
Added Risks for Asylum Seekers and Green-Card Applicants
In some cases, applicants for asylum in the U.S. and those who have applied for green cards have been reluctant to apply for financial assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency or low-interest loans from the Small Business Administration after their homes or businesses were devastated by hurricanes and other natural disasters. These immigrants fear that if they accept the help to which they are legally entitled, it could be held against them during their immigration proceedings.
The Right Legal Help for Immigrants
For immigrants worried about the changes to the public charge policy, consulting with a West Palm Beach immigration lawyer can often provide greater peace of mind and an improved understanding of the law as it applies to their specific situations. Your West Palm Beach immigration lawyer will look at all aspects of your case to determine the best approach for your needs. This can help you and your family to resolve immigration issues in a positive way while relieving some of the stress associated with these legal proceedings.
The West Palm Beach immigration lawyers at Pozo Goldstein have the experience and expertise necessary to ensure the best results for your case. We work with families and individuals throughout our area to provide assertive representation for asylum seekers and visa applicants. Call us today at 561-578-4977 to schedule a free initial consultation in our office. We look forward to the chance to meet you.