Immigration bill: Here’s what you need to know

HERE ARE KEY TERMS OF THE IMMIGRATION PROPOSAL….
‘‘Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act’’.

Is there amnesty and/or a “path to citizenship”?

Yes. If you’re an undocumented immigrant who arrived in the United States before Dec. 31, 2011, haven’t committed a felony (or three misdemeanors), hold a job, and pay a $500 fine and back taxes, then you will immediately gain the status of “registered provisional,” allowing an individual to legally stay in the United States without risk of deportation. Registered provisionals wouldn’t be able to get any means-tested public benefits. If you’ve already been deported, you’re eligible to apply to re-enter if your parent or child is a citizen or permanent resident, or if you are DREAMer and were deported as a minor (see next section).

After six years, you’d have to renew the status, which is dependent on maintaining a steady work history, having a clean criminal record, and paying another $500 fine.

Four years after that (10 years after initially attaining “registered provisional” status), you could apply for permanent residency (aka a Green Card). That step requires showing constant work history, constant presence in the United States, continuous tax payments, clean criminal record, and knowledge of English and civics, as well as paying another $1,000 fine.
Three years after that you’d be eligible to become a citizen. So the recognition-to-citizenship process takes a total of 13 years and requires $2,000 in fines from each adult affected.

Would anyone get a faster path?

Also yes. DREAMers — or those who entered illegally before age 16, graduated from high school, and have been in the United States for at least five years — would have a quicker path. They would be able to apply for permanent residency after five years and citizenship immediately thereafter, provided they serve two years in the military or complete at least two years of college.
Agricultural workers also would get a chance at Green Cards after five years, but would not be immediately eligible for citizenship, unlike DREAMers.

More Details can be found: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/04/16/the-senate-immigration-bill-heres-what-you-need-to-know/

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