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Getting Back to Normal at USCIS

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If Trump loses will things get back to normal at immigration?

Hi, I'm Jim Hacking, immigration lawyer, practicing law throughout the United States at our office here in St. Louis, Missouri. A lot of people are talking about the election and a lot of people think that Donald Trump might lose. I personally think he's probably going to win again. But in this video, we're going to talk about what might happen if Trump loses and Joseph Biden becomes president of the United States.

People want to know how fast will things return to normal at USCIS and at the state department. I think that's a tough question. I mean, it took about two or two and a half years for things to really fundamentally change under the Trump administration, and some things they did right away. You might recall the Muslim ban the weekend after he took office and the assault on asylum began shortly thereafter. But there's a lot of things that take a long time.

Whenever the government wants to change a rule, they have to draft a new rule. They have to publish it to the public, and they have to allow what's called notice and comment. So they have to allow the public to comment on a proposed rule. And then, of course, once the rule goes into effect, it can always be tied up in the courts. And so, we saw that a lot under President Obama and we saw it even more under President Trump. Now, President Trump doesn't always follow rule-making procedures, but some of his big substantive changes, like the public charge rule at USCIS, that took a couple of years because they had to go through that process. They wanted to make it substantial. This new anti-asylum rule that they have, that too went through notice and comments.

So, people shouldn't be under the impression that if President Trump loses and Joe Biden becomes president that things are going to change overnight. Now, some things will change quickly. A lot of the executive orders, President Biden, if he were to win, could throw those out and undo those executive orders. And, typically, when a president gets sworn in, on their first day in office, they sign a bunch of executive orders to try to undo things that the prior president had done.

So I imagine that a lot of things would be affected by that, but you can't expect the culture to change so quickly. These officers have been having it drilled into their brain that they should deny as many cases as possible. It's sort of like trying to get a big ship to turn in another direction, to try to get USCIS officers to treat their applicants fairly and to get back to what was never a great system, but was certainly better than the system we have now. So, don't hold your breath. Again, President Trump could very well win. If he doesn't win, don't expect an immediate change in the culture and the processes at USCIS.

If you have questions about this or if you're watching this video in the future, and I am wrong, and President Trump loses, I would, of course, be very happy. But we'd be interested to talk to you about it. Give us a call at (314) 961-8200. You can email us at Be sure to join us in our Facebook group, which is called Immigrant Home. If you like this video, we ask you please share it out on social and subscribe to our YouTube channel so that you get updates whenever we make videos just like this one. Thanks a lot. Have a great day.

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