Expected changes in immigration policies under new US President Joe Biden

During his election campaign, Biden announced that he would pursue a fairer and more humane immigration policy and that he would abolish some of the practices enacted during the Trump era within 100 days of taking office. It remains to be seen which of these he will accomplish through presidential decrees and which through a comprehensive immigration reform with Congress and the Senate behind him, but here are some of the practices Biden plans to introduce;

1. Lift the Trump-era travel restrictions and entry bans that apply only to people from certain countries;

2. Introduce programs and reforms for temporary work visa categories to encourage applicants with particularly high skills and qualifications to remain in the United States and contribute to the economy;

3. Increase the current quota for asylum applications from abroad, which the Trump administration has capped at 15,000 for 2021, to 125,000 per year;

4. Stop the enforcement of restrictive asylum policies for asylum seekers at the border that prevent certain categories of asylum seekers from applying. Restore the asylum system and ensure its effective and fair implementation;

5. Stop the enforcement of the “Public Charge” rule, which has been under court review for some time and applies to immigrants who cannot stay in the US without government support;

6. Increase the annual quota of 140,000 for employer-sponsored greencard applications and eliminate country-based quotas. Exempting immigrants with a PhD in Science, Technology, Mathematics and Engineering from the Greencard quota and making it easier for them to obtain a Greencard;

7. Work on new roadmaps to offer US citizenship to the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants, including those under TPS (Temporary Protected Status) and DACA (special status for children of those who entered the US without legal status);

8. Including spouses and children of Greencard holders in the definition of “immediate relative” in applications for family members and granting temporary visas to applicants until their permanent visas are approved to ensure family unity;

9. Reducing the caseload of citizenship applications; improving and accelerating application processes;

10. Continue the program known as the “DV Lottery” or Greencard, which is an annual lottery for citizens of underrepresented countries in the US. As it is known, Trump had previously announced that he wanted to stop this program.

We will have to wait and see whether the long-discussed comprehensive immigration reform and modernization will come to fruition under the Biden administration, or how many of the above measures will be enacted with the support of the Senate and Congress. For more information on the Biden administration’s immigration policies, please visit from the link you can reach

Attorney Hasan Alaz


***The information provided herein is for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or guidance, nor does it create an attorney-client relationship. Immigration law is personal and you should contact our office directly to understand and properly analyze your specific situation.

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