The Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRAIRA) represents an effort by Congress to strengthen and streamline U.S. immigration laws. The Act was designed to improve border control by imposing criminal penalties for racketeering, alien smuggling and the use or creation of fraudulent immigration-related documents and increasing interior enforcement by agencies charged with monitoring visa applications and visa abusers.
Employment eligibility verification guidelines are also incorporated into the Act, including sanctions for employers who fail to comply with the regulations and restrictions on unfair immigration-related employment practices, as well as provisions governing the dispersment of governement aid to aliens.
Definition from Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary
An anti-illegal immigration bill amending the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), IIRIRA covered everything from border control to penalties on immigrants and employers who violate the immigration laws to allowable benefits for immigrants. Many immigrants were affected by new three- and ten-year bars to admissibility for having been "unlawfully present" in the United States (having entered without any inspection or overstayed a nonimmigrant visa). New vaccination requirements for immigrants were also added. The Act also prevented certain immigrants -- including some with green cards -- from receiving government benefits such as Social Security. Applying for asylum also became more difficult under IIRIRA, as applicants were required to apply within a year after entering the United States and were refused work permits until their cases had been granted.
Definition provided by Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary.
August 19, 2010, 5:27 pm