The federal government is on the verge of shutting down, with lawmakers scrambling to come to an agreement on a last-minute spending measure. Immigration has been the key sticking point in budget negotiations, with many Democrats saying that they will vote against a spending bill if it does not include protection for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

If no deal is reached on either a budget or a short-term spending measure to fund the government while negotiations continue, a number of services, including immigration programs, would be suspended beginning at midnight tonight.

In the event of a shutdown, the Department of Labor would suspend operation of its immigration functions. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the State Department would continue processing visas, though delays would be likely. A number of immigration programs would be unavailable until they are reauthorized, including the E-Verify program, the Conrad 30 waiver for J-1 physicians, the Special Immigrant Religious Workers program, and the EB-5 regional center investor program.

A detailed BAL FAQ on how a government shutdown would affect immigration programs is available here.

BAL Analysis: BAL will continue following events in Washington, D.C., and will provide clients with an update if the situation changes.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact

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