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Immigration law may draw immigrants who benefit economy

In today's society, a debate continues to brew about whether immigration is really beneficial to the United States, including the state of New York. Some U.S. citizens believe that immigrants who seek citizenship according to the immigration law can be beneficial to the economy, whereas others have argued that it offers no benefit. However, new research indicates that many immigrants who entered the United States during the latter part of the 19th century had a long-lasting and positive impact on the local areas in which they settled.

According to the recent study, counties in the United States that ended up receiving large numbers of immigrants between 1860 and 1920 have much higher incomes today than other local areas. These counties also reportedly have less unemployment and poverty, along with higher educational attainment and more urbanization. For instance, the researchers estimated that a boost of 5 percent in the number of immigrants entering a county back then resulted in a 20% increase in average incomes at the turn of the 21st century.

The researchers who conducted the study emphasized that it was not that the immigrants went to more prosperous areas but that areas became more prosperous as a result of the immigrants. According to the study, immigrants helped local economies because they helped to meet labor needs in the area of industrialization, for example. Those with more skills also helped to develop innovations in manufacturing and agriculture.

Immigrants who are interested in citizenship may take comfort in knowing that researchers recently recognized the value they may add to U.S. society. Unfortunately, understanding where to start in the immigration court system can be tricky and emotionally overwhelming. An immigration law attorney in New York can help with navigating the process of attaining citizenship or another legally recognized status.

Source:, "Places in the US that took in more immigrants in the 19th century still benefit economically from it", Dan Kopf, June 3, 2017

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