The Visa Efficiency and E-Verify Extension Act of 2008


Recently, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) issued a section-by-section analysis of the Visa Efficiency and E-Verify Extension Act of 2008. In summary this bill recaptures unused family based and employment based visas from fiscal years 1992 through 2007 and allows unused family and employment based visas in future years to automatically “roll over” to the next fiscal year. Although the maximum number of visas issued is mandated by law, the actual number of visas issued in a given year can be significantly lower based on processing or other bureaucratic delays. In order to ensure that all authorized visas are actually used, the Act permits calculation of the final number of visas available that takes into account unused visas from past years.  Additionally, the bill reauthorizes the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) electronic employment eligibility verification program known as “E-Verify.” The Act provides a 5 year extension of the voluntary program and it also includes provisions that ensure that DHS provide timely reimbursements to the Social Security Administration (SSA) for the resources utilized to maintain the E-Verify program.

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