< Back to H.R. 14535 (94th Congress, 1975–1976)

Text of the Immigration and Nationality Act Amendments

This bill was enacted after being signed by the President on October 20, 1976. The text of the bill below is as of Oct 20, 1976 (Passed Congress/Enrolled Bill).

PUBLIC LAW 94-571—OCT. 20, 1976                             90 STAT. 2703

Public Law 94-571
94th Congress
                                An Act
   To amend the Immigration and Nationality Act, and for other purposes.      Oct. 20, 1976
                                                                              [H.R. 14535]
   Be it enacted hy the Senate and House of Representatives of the
 United States of America in Congress assembled, That this Act may           Immigration and
be cited as the "Immigration and Nationality Act Amendments of               Nationality Act
1976".                                                                       Amendments of
   k5Ec. 2. Section 201 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8            1976.
                                                                             8 u s e 1101 note.
U.S.C. 1151) is amended—
        (1) by striking out subsection (a) and inserting in lieu thereof
     the following:
   "SEC. 201. (a) Exclusive of special immigrants defined in section
101(a) (27), and immediate relatives of United States citizens as            8 u s e 1101.
specified in subsection (b) of this section, (1) the number of aliens
born in any foreign state or dependent area located in the Eastern
Hemisphere who may be issued immigrant visas or who may otherwise
acquire the status of an alien lawfully admitted to the United States
for permanent residence, or who may, pursuant to section 203(a) (7),         8 u s e 1153.
enter conditionally, shall not in any of the first three quarters of any
fiscal year exceed a total of 45,000 and shall not in any fiscal year
exceed a total of 170,000; and (2) the number of aliens born in any
foreign state of the Western Hemisphere or in the Canal Zone, or in
a dependent area located in the Western Hemisphere, who may be
issued immigrant visas or who may otherwise acquire the status of
an alien lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent resi-
dence, or who may, pursuant to section 203(a) (7), enter conditionally
shall not in any of the first three quarters of any fiscal year exceed a
total of 32,000 and shall not in any fiscal year exceed a total of
120,000."; and
        (2) by striking out subsections (c), (d),and (e).
   SEC. 3. Section 202 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8
U.S.C. 1152) is amended—
        (1) by striking out the last proviso in subsection ( a ) ;
        (2) by striking out subsection (c) and inserting in lieu thereof
     the following:
   "(c) Any immigrant born in a colony or other component or
dependent area of a foreign state overseas from the foreign state,
other than a special immigrant, as defined in section 101(a) (27), or
an immediate relative of a United States citizen, as defined in section
201 (b), shall be chargeable for the purpose of the limitations set forth
in sections 201 (a) and 202(a), to the hemisphere in which such colony
or other component or dependent area is located, and to the foreign
state, respectively, and the number of immigrant visas available to
each such colony or other component or dependent area shall not
exceed 600 in any one fiscal year."; and
        (3) by inserting at the end thereof the following new
     subsection:

90 STAT. 2704 PUBLIC LAW 94-571—OCT. 20, 1976 "(e) Whenever the maximum number of visas or conditional 8 use 1152. entries have been made available under section 202 to natives of any single foreign state as defined in subsection (b) of this section or any dependent area as defined in subsection (c) of this section in any fiscal year, in the next following fiscal year a number of visas and condi- tional entries, not to exceed 20,000, in the case of a foreign state or 600 in the case of a dependent area, shall be made available and allocated as follows: "(1) Visas shall first be made available, in a number not to exceed 20 per centum of the number specified in this subsection, to qualified immigrants who are the unmarried sons or daughters of citizens of the United States, "(2) Visas shall next be made available, in a number not to exceed 20 per centum of the number specified in this subsection, plus any visas not required for the classes specified in paragraph (1), to qualified immigrants who are the spouses, unmarried sons, or unmarried daughters of an alien lawfully admitted for perma- nent residence. "(3) Visas shall next be made available, in a number not to exceed 10 per centum of the number specified in this subsection, to qualified immigrants who are members of the professions, or who because of their exceptional ability in the sciences or the arts will substantially benefit prospectively the national economy, cultural interests, or welfare of the United States, and whose services in the professions, sciences, or arts are sought by an employer in the United States. . " (4) Visas shall next be made available, in a number not to exceed 10 per centum of the number specified in this subsection, plus any visas not required for the classes specified in paragraphs (1) through (3), to qualified immigrants who are the married sons or the married daughters of citizens of the United States. "(5) Visas shall next be made available, in a number not to exceed 24 per centum of the number specified in this subsection, plus any visas not required for the classes specified in paragraphs (1) through (4), to qualified immigrants who are the brothers or sisters of citizens of the United States, provided such citizens are at least twenty-one years of age. "(6) Visas shall next be made available, in a number not to exceed 10 per centum of the number specified in this subsection, to qualified immigrants capable of performing specified skilled or unskilled labor, not of a temporary or seasonal nature, for which a shortage of employable and willing persons exists in the United States. "(7) Conditional entries shall next be made available by the Attorney General, pursuant to such regulations as he may pre- scribe, in a number not to exceed 6 per centum of the number specified in this subsection, to aliens who satisfy an Immigration and Naturalization Service officer at an examination in any non- Communist or non-Communist-dominated country, (A) that (i) because of persecution or fear of persecution on account of race, reliarion, or political opinion thev have fled (I) from anv Com- munist or Communist-dominated country or area, or (II) from any country within the general area of the Middle East, and (ii) are unable or unwilling to return to such country or area on account of race, religion, or political opinion, and (iii) are not nationals of the countries or areas in which their application for conditional entry is made; or (B) that they are persons uprooted
PUBLIC LAW 94-571—OCT. 20, 1976 90 STAT. 2705 by catastrophic n a t u r a l calamity as defined by the President who are unable to return to their usual phice of abode. F o r the purpose "General area of of the foregoing the term 'general area of the Middle E a s t ' means the Middle East." the area between and including (1) Libya on the west, (2) Turkey on the north, (3) Pakistan on the east, and (4) Saudi Arabia and Ethiopia on the south: Provided^ T h a t immigrant visas in a number not exceeding one-half the number specified in this para- g r a p h may be made available, in lieu of conditional entries of a like number, to such aliens who have been continuously physically present in the United States for a period of at least two years prior to application for adjustment of status. " (8) Visas so allocated but not required for the classes specified in p a r a g r a p h s (1) through (7) shall be made available to other qualified immigrants strictly in the chronological order in which they qualify.". SEC. 4. Section 203 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1153) is amended— (1) by striking out "201(a) ( i i ) " each place it appears in para- g r a p h s (1) t h r o u g h (7) of subsection (a) and inserting in lieu thereof in each such place "201(a) (1) or (2)"'; ' (2) by striking out the period at the end of p a r a g r a p h (3) of subsection (a) and inserting in lieu thereof a comma and the fol- lowing : "and whose services in the professions, sciences, or arts are sought by an employer in the United States."; (3) jjy striking out the period at the end of p a r a g r a p h (5) of subsection (a) and inserting in lieu thereof a comma and the following: "provided such citizens are at least twenty-one years of age."; and (4) by striking out the second sentence of subsection (e) and inserting in lieu thereof the following: "The Secretary of State shall terminate the registration of any alien who fails to apply for an immigrant visa within one year following notification to him of the availability of such visa, but the Secretary shall rein- state the registration of any such alien who establishes within two years following notification of the availability of such visa t h a t such failure to appl}^ was due to circumstances beyond his control. U p o n such termination the approval of any petition approved pursuant to section 204(b) shall be automatically 8 USC1154. revoked.". SEC. 5. Section 212(a) (14) of such Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a) (14)) is amended to read as follows: " (14) Aliens seeking to enter the United States, for the purpose of performing skilled or unskilled labor, unless the Secretary of Labor has determined and certified to the Secretary of State and the Attorney General t h a t ( A ) there are not sufficient workers who are able, willing, qualified (or equally qualified in the case of aliens who are members of the teaching profession or who have exceptional ability in the sciences or tlie a r t s ) , and available at the time of application for a visa and admission to the United States and at the place where the alien is to perform such skilled or unskilled labor, and ( B ) the employment of such aliens will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of the workers in the United States similarly employed. The exclusion of aliens under this p a r a g r a p h shall apply to preference immi- g r a n t aliens described in section 203(a) (3) and ( 6 ) , and to non- 8 USC 1153. preference immigrant aliens described in section 203(a) (8) ;". SEC. 6. Section 245 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1255) is amended to read as follows:
90 STAT. 2706 PUBLIC LAW 94-571—OCT. 20, 1976 " S E C . 245. (a) The status of an alien who was mspected a n d admitted or paroled into the United States may be adjusted by the Attorney General, in his discretion and under such regulations as he may prescribe, to that of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence if (1) the alien makes an application for such adjustment, (2) the alien is eligible to receive an immigrant visa and is admis- sible to the United States for permanent residence, and (3) an immi- g r a n t visa is immediately available to him at the time his application is filed. " ( b ) Upon the approval of an application for adjustment made under subsection ( a ) , the Attorney General shall record the alien's lawful admission for permanent residence as of the date the order of the Attorney General approving the application for the adjustment of status is made, and the Secretary of State shall reduce by one the number of the preference or nonpreference visas authorized t o be Ante, p. 2703. issued under sections 202(e) or 203(a) within the class to which the 8 u s e 1153. alien is chargeable for the fiscal year then current. " ( c ) T h e provisions of this section shall not be applicable to (1) an alien crewman; (2) an alien (other t h a n an immediate relative as 8 u s e 1151. defined in section 201 ( b ) ) who hereafter continues in or accepts unau- thorized employment p r i o r to filing an application for adjustment of status; or (3) any alien admitted in transit without visa under section 212(d)(4)(C).". S E C 7. (a) Section 101(a) (27) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1101(a) (27)) is amended by striking out s u b p a r a g r a p h ( A ) and by redesignating s u b p a r a g r a p h s ( B ) t h r o u g h ( E ) as sub- p a r a g r a p h s ( A ) through ( D ) , respectively. (b) Section 204 of such Act (8 U.S.C. 1154) is amended to add a new subsection ( f ) , t o read as follows: " ( f ) The provisions of this section shall be applicable to qualified immigrants specified in p a r a g r a p h s (1) through (6) of section 202(e).". (c) Section 211(b) of such Act (8 U.S.C. 1181(b)) is amended by striking out "section 101(a) (27) ( B ) " and inserting in lieu thereof "section 101(a) (27) ( A ) " . (d) Section 212(a) (24) of such Act (8 U.S.C. 1182(a) (24)) is amended by striking out "101 (a) (27) ( A ) and ( B ) " and inserting in lieu thereof "101(a) (27) (A) and aliens born in the Western Hemisphere". (e) Section 241(a) (10) of such Act (8 U.S.C. 1251(a) (10)) is amended by striking out the language in the parentheses and insert- ing in lieu thereof the following: "other than an alien described in section 101(a) (27) ( A ) and aliens born in the Westei-n Hemisphere". (f) Section 244(d) of such Act (8 U.S.C. 1254(d)) is amended by striking out "is entitled to special immigrant classification under section 101(a) (27) ( A ) , o r " . Repeal. (g) Section 21(e) of the Act of October 3, 1965 (Public Law 89-236; 79 Stat. 921), is repealed. SEC. 8. The Act ejititled "An Act to adjust the status of Cuban refu- gees to tliat of lawful permanent residents of the United States, and for other purposes", approved November 2, 1966 (8 U.S.C. 1255, note), is amended by adding at the end thereof the following new section: Cuban refugees, " S E C . 5. T h e ai)prova1 of an application for adjustment of status to adjustment of that of lawful permanent resident of the United States pui-suant to status. the provisions of socticm 1 of this Act shall not require the Secretary of State to reduce the number of visas authorized to be issued in any class in the case of any alien who,is physically present in the United States
PUBLIC LAW 94-571~OCT. 20, 1976 90 STAT. 2707 on or before the effective date of the Immigration and Nationality Act Amendments of 1976." SEC. 9. (a) The amendments made by this Act shall not operate to 8 u s e 1153 note. affect the entitlement to immigrant status or the order of consideration for issuance of an immigrant visa of an alien entitled to a preference status, under section 203(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 USC 1153 as in effect on the day before the effective date of this Act, on the basis of a petition filed with the Attorney General prior to such effec- tive date. (b) An alien chargeable to the numerical limitation contained in Numerical section 21(e) of the Act of October 3, 1965 (79 Stat. 921), who estab- limitation. lished a priority date at a consular office on the basis of entitlement to immigrant status under statutory or regulatory provisions in existence on the day before the effective date of this Act shall be deemed to be entitled to immigrant status under section 203(a) (8) of the Immigra- tion and Nationality Act and shall be accorded the priority date pre- viously established by him. Nothing in this section shall be construed to preclude the acquisition by such an alien of a preference status under section 203(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended by section 4 of this Act. Any petition filed by, or in behalf of, such an alien to accord him a preference status under section 203 (a) shall, upon approval, be deemed to have been filed as of the priority date pre- viously established by such alien. The numerical limitation to which such an alien shall be chargeable shall be determined as provided in sections 201 and 202 of the Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended by this Act. SEC. 10. The foregoing provisions of this Act, including the amend- Effective date. ments made by such provisions, shall become effective on the first day 8 USC 1101 note. of the first month which begins more than sixty days after the date of enactment of this Act. Approved October 20, 1976. LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: HOUSE REPORT No. 94-1553 (Comm. on the Judiciary). CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, Vol. 122 (1976): Sept. 29, considered and passed House. Oct. 1, considered and passed Senate. WEEKLY COMPILATION OF PRESIDENTIAL DOCUMENTS, Vol. 12, No. 43: Oct. 21, Presidential statement.