While the upcoming elections may introduce a new era of comprehensive immigration reform, the courts will play an important role in the process. For example, the Fifth Circuit recently upheld a lower court’s decision to block some of the President’s recent reforms. The court’s ruling effectively prevents expansion of the President’s Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals (DACA) and may prevent establishment of the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program. While comprehensive immigration reform is on the horizon, it will certainly face legal hurdles and obstacles.
Given the sensitive and important nature of immigration, immigrants regularly enter the United States on temporary work or tourist visas and simply stay in the country past the period of time allotted by the visa. Perhaps the hope is that once they enter the country their immigration status will be “fixed” or adjusted in some manner. While each case is fact-specific, as a general matter overstaying the period of time granted by the work or tourist visa simply limits an immigrant’s opportunity of favorable adjustment of their immigration status.