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[IWS] CRS: NONIMMIGRANT OVERSTAYS: BRIEF SYNTHESIS OF THE ISSUE [22 January 2014]

IWS Documented News Service

_______________________________

Institute for Workplace Studies----------------- Professor Samuel B. Bacharach

School of Industrial & Labor Relations-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies

Cornell University

16 East 34th Street, 4th floor---------------------- Stuart Basefsky

New York, NY 10016 -------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau

________________________________________________________________________

 

Congressional Research Service (CRS)

 

Nonimmigrant Overstays: Brief Synthesis of the Issue

Ruth Ellen Wasem,  Specialist in Immigration Policy

January 22, 2014

http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/homesec/RS22446.pdf

[full-text, 13 pages]

 

Summary

As Congress debates comprehensive immigration reform and its component parts of immigration

control (i.e., border security and interior enforcement), legal reform (i.e., temporary and

permanent admissions), and the resolution of unauthorized alien residents, concerns arise over the

capacity of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to identify and remove temporary aliens

on nonimmigrant visas who fail to depart after their visas expire. It is estimated that each year

hundreds of thousands of foreign nationals overstay their nonimmigrant visas or enter the country

illegally (with fraudulent documents or bypassing immigration inspections). The most recent

estimate (published in 2013) is that 11.7 million foreign nationals resided in the United States

without authorization in 2012.

 

DHS does not have reliable data on emigration and nonimmigrant departures from the United

States. As a consequence, reliable estimates of the number of nonimmigrant overstays are not

available. Over the years, the overstay estimates ranged from 31% to 57% of the unauthorized

population (depending on methodology). A 2013 study of visa overstays from 2000 to 2009

estimated that total nonimmigrant overstays to the United States dropped from 705,000 per year

to 190,000 per year, or about 73%, over the decade. As of June 2013, the U.S. Government

Accountability Office (GAO) reported that DHS’s unmatched arrival-departure records totaled

more than 1 million; however, the failure of DHS to consistently update the alien’s record—for

example, if the authorized period of admission is extended, if deferred departure is granted, or if

the immigration status changes—is a major factor that prevents DHS from calculating reliable

estimates of overstays.

 

Contents

Background ...................................................................................................................................... 1

Elements of Nonimmigrant Visa Control ........................................................................................ 2

Visa Issuance ............................................................................................................................. 2

Border Inspections ..................................................................................................................... 3

Emigration and Exit Data .......................................................................................................... 3

Past Legislative Action on Nonimmigrant Overstays ...................................................................... 5

Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act ................................................ 5

Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act of 2002 ............................................... 5

Legislation Implementing the 9/11 Commission Recommendations ........................................ 6

Estimating Overstays ....................................................................................................................... 7

Early Demographic Estimates ................................................................................................... 7

Administrative Estimates ........................................................................................................... 8

Recent Demographic Estimates ................................................................................................. 8

Concluding Comments .................................................................................................................... 9

 

Figures

Figure 1. Estimated Annual Trends in Visa Overstays in the United States .................................... 9

 

Contacts

Author Contact Information........................................................................................................... 10

 

 

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This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.

 

 




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