President Donal Trump has this announced he will seek new legislation that will look to exclude immigrants from claiming or to qualify for welfare support for the first 5 years.

During a speech in Iowa on Wednesday, Trump stated that ‘the time has come’ for ‘new immigration rules’ that will require those pursuing entry into the US to be able to support themselves financially and as a result, would hold back the use of welfare for a period of at least 5 years. He went on to say that the Trump administration would be looking to ‘put it into legislation to that effect very shortly’. What is uncertain however is how this new proposed plan will affect the current situation and set up within the US.

The current immigration law with America already bars the majority of immigrants who arrive in the US on immigrant visas from being eligible for federal benefits such as social security and food stamps for the initial five years. States usually have the power to determine the qualifying regulations for local programs. Foreigners with non-immigrant visas and those who don’t have any legal status are often barred from any form of those benefits as a whole.

Trump’s latest plan also proposes that the US have the ability to deny people who are likely to require assistance from the state by being classed as a ‘public charge’. This law has actually been a part of the American Law for decades but Trump now wants to guarantee that this happens whilst tightening the restrictions on the rules.

Fox News report that Trump is likely to refer to a center for immigration studies report, which was devised in 2015. This report found that over half of the households occupied by non-US citizens were, in fact, receiving a form of state-funded aid. For US-born citizens, the figure was 20% lower than that of foreign settlers.

The exact date of this new legislation is yet but announced but following the pattern of the Trump administration up until now, this is a move that will most likely start to take effect soon. If you’re an immigrant and you’re concerned about this latest announcement, please don’t hesitate to get in touch to see how we can offer advice today.