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H.R. 5872 (97th): Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1982


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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Mar 17, 1982.


Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1982 - Title I: Control of Illegal Immigration - Part A: Employment - Amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to make it unlawful for a person to knowingly hire, recruit, or refer any alien not authorized to work. Makes following the appropriate verification procedures an affirmative defense for an employer so charged. Sets forth a transitional verification procedure (for the first three years) under which an employer must attest that he or she has examined the alien's identity and work eligibility papers (passport, social security card, etc.). Requires the President to implement a secure verification system within three years. Prohibits the use of this system or any required identification document for other law enforcement purposes. Sets forth graduated civil and criminal penalties for verification violations. Directs the Attorney General, in cooperation with the Secretaries of Commerce, Labor, and Agriculture, and the Administrator of the Small Business Administration, to inform employers, employment agencies, unions, and the public about these requirements. Authorizes appropriations for FY 1983. Makes it illegal to fraudulently misuse or manufacture entry or work documents (up to $5,000 fine or five years' imprisonment or both). Part B: Enforcement and Fees - Makes it unlawful for a person to knowingly, or in reckless disregard of the fact that an alien is not authorized to enter the United States, bring such person into the country (up to $2,500 or one year's imprisonment or both). Expresses the sense of Congress that: (1) Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) enforcement activities and resources should be increased; and (2) the Attorney General should use his existing authority under such Act to impose maintenance and operating fees for an alien's use of INS border facilities and services. Part C: Adjudication Procedures and Asylum Inspection and Exclusion - Establishes in the Department of Justice a United States Immigration Board to hear appeals from final decisions of administrative law judges under such Act. Provides that the Chairman of such Board shall appoint these administrative law judges. Grants such judges responsibility over cases of exclusion, deportation, status rescission, and asylum. Requires exclusion appeals to be filed with the Board (rather than the Attorney General) within 15 days. Limits judicial review in exclusion and asylum cases to the question of habeas corpus. Reduces the period for filing a petition for judicial review of final orders of exclusion, deportation, and asylum from six months to 30 days. Revises asylum provisions to: (1) require an alien under an exclusion or deportation order to apply for asylum within 14 days after notice of such order unless changed circumstances in the alien's country cause a change in asylum eligibility; (2) prohibit an alien from reapplying for asylum after having been denied such status unless such changes have occurred; (3) require asylum applications to be heard before administrative law judges having special training in international law; (4) permit legal counsel at asylum hearings; (5) require an alien to be an admissible refugee in order to be granted asylum; (6) place the burden of proof on the applicant; and (7) prohibit the reopening of an application proceeding unless changed circumstances in the alien's county cause a change in asylum eligibility. Requires the President to nominate members of the Board within 45 days. Sets forth administrative and operating provisions for the transfer of asylum proceedings from the existing special inquiry system to the administrative law judge system. Authorizes appropriations for such purpose for FY 1983. Part D: Adjustment of Status - Prohibits adjustment of status to permanent resident for violators of (nonimmigrant) visa terms. Title II: Reform of Legal Immigration - Part A: Immigrants - Revises numerical limitation provisions to: (1) establish a "family reunification" category of 325,000 (minus the number of prior-year immediate relatives); (2) establish an "independent" category of 100,000 (minus the number of prior-year special immigrants); and (3) permit 40,000 annual entrants each from Mexico and Canada, with each country entitled to the other's unused visas. Sets forth family reunification preference allocations as follows: (1) unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens; (2) spouses and children of permanent residents; (3) married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens; and (4) brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens with already approved visas. Sets forth "independent" preference allocations as follows: (1) aliens of exceptional ability; (2) skilled workers; (3) investors; (4) unskilled workers; and (5) nonpreference workers. Sets forth an interpreference allocation guide. Provides that labor certifications will be granted on the basis of national job market data, and requires a finding that U.S. workers could not be trained (or be presently available) within a reasonable period of time. Includes within the definition of "special immigrant" Amerasian children who: (1) are unmarried and between 14 and 21 years old; (2) were fathered by a U.S. citizen on active duty in Korea, Vietnam, Cambodia, or Laos, and subject to discrimination in such countries; (3) are orphans or have been put up for adoption; and (4) are coming to the United States to be adopted by a U.S. citizen or citizens. Limits such annual entrants to 2,000. Terminates such category after five years. Includes within the definition of "special immigrant" unmarried sons and daughters and surviving spouses of employees of certain international organizations. Part B: Nonimmigrants - Limits (H-2 visa) temporary workers to a maximum stay of eight months per year unless the Secretary of Labor extends such period. Requires an employer petition (to bring in such workers) to certify that: (1) there are not enough U.S. workers for the job; and (2) similarly employed U.S. workers' wages will not be adversely affected. Provides that: (1) employers need not submit such petition more than 80 days in advance of need; and (2) the Secretary must take a decision on a petition within 20 days of need, or else the petition is considered approved. Provides for a seven-day expedited certification. Requires the Secretary, in consultation with the Attorney General and the Secretary of Agriculture, to report annually to the Congress. Authorizes appropriations beginning with FY 1983 to recruit domestic workers and monitor the nonimmigrant worker program. Directs the Secretary of Labor to report on the H-2 worker program to Congress within six months. Prohibits foreign students from adjusting their status to permanent resident unless they are immediate relatives of U.S. citizens. Requires foreign students to return to their home country for two years before being eligible to apply for a U.S. permanent resident visa. Authorizes the Attorney General and the Secretary of State to establish a three-year pilot visa waiver program for up to five countries providing a similar benefit to the United States. Sets forth program provisions. Title III: Legalization - Authorizes adjustment of status to permanent resident for specified undocumented aliens who have resided in the United States since January 1, 1978. Authorizes a temporary resident status for Cuban/Haitian entrants and for specified undocumented aliens who have resided in the United States since January 1, 1980. Permits such temporary resident aliens to: (1) work in the United States; and (2) apply for permanent resident status after two years. Makes temporary residents (other than Cuban/Haitian entrants) ineligible for Federal public assistance (other than medical care, aid to the aged, blind, or disabled, and public health). Prohibits the legalization of persons: (1) convicted of a felony or three or more misdemeanors in the United States; or (2) who have taken part in political, religious, or racial persecution. Directs the Attorney General, in cooperation with designated voluntary agencies and the Secretary of Labor, to disseminate information about such status legalization program. Authorizes appropriations for such program for FY 1983.