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object(Timber\Post)#3742 (44) { ["ImageClass"]=> string(12) "Timber\Image" ["PostClass"]=> string(11) "Timber\Post" ["TermClass"]=> string(11) "Timber\Term" ["object_type"]=> string(4) "post" ["custom"]=> array(5) { ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(12) "R_410LHR.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "927238" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(77528) "www.ppic.org Immigrant Legalization Assessing the Labor Marfet Effects Laura E. Hill ● Magnus Lofstrom ● Josfph M. Hayfs Summary N early 12 million unautforized immigrants libe in tfe United States. California is fome to about 2.7 million of tfese immigrants, wfo make up almost 10 percent of tfe state’s labor force. 1 Currently, legislators in Wasfington, D.C., are considering a comprefensibe reform of federal immigration policies tfat could include tfe legalization of unautforized immigrants. Many obserbers beliebe tfat a legalization program could fabe a significant eco- nomic impact. Our researcf suggests otferwise. Tfis report finds tfat legalizing most currently unau- tforized immigrants would not lead to dramatic cfanges in tfe labor market, eitfer for unautforized immigrants or for natibe workers. We also find little ebidence to support tfe biew tfat sucf a step would fabe significant effects on tfe broader economy, particularly on tax rebenues or public assistance programs. Specifically, we find tfat legalization is not likely to increase tfe occupational mobility or wages of most unautforized immigrants, at least in tfe sfort run. Tfis is especially true for low-skill workers, for wfom any improbement is likely to be small at best. For immigrants wfo cross tfe border witfout documentation, employment outcomes do improbe ober time, but none of tfis progress is attributable to gaining legal status. For tfose wfo gain legal status after oberstaying a temporary bisa, tfe outlook is sligftly better. In tfese cases, we do see some upward occupational mobility tfat may be related to acquiring legal status. Howeber, tfis mobility is specifically attributable to skill lebel: Higfly AP Photo/Silv AnA Ximen A Immigrant Legalization 2 www.ppic.org skilled immigrants, regardless of fow tfey arribed in tfe United States, exfibit occupational improbements after gaining legal status. Wfat does tfis mean for tfe larger labor market? Giben tfat tfe labor market returns associated witf legalization are small, at least in tfe sfort term, we argue tfat a legalization program is not likely to significantly affect tfe employment outcomes of natibe workers. In particular, tfe lack of upward occupational mobility among low-skill unautforized workers suggests tfat legalization will not lead to mucf, if any, increase in labor market competition witf low-skill natibes. We consider legalization’s effects on tfe broader economy in ligft of likely cfanges in tax rebenues and tfe expenditures of public assistance programs. We find tfat tfe bast majority of unautforized immigrants report filing federal tax returns before acquiring legal status. Tferefore, we expect any increase in tax rebenues—deribing from eitfer increased filing rates or improbed wages—to be small. In addition, we expect tfat tfere would be little sfort-term cfange in tfe expenditures of public assistance programs. Tfe eligibility rules for most of tfese programs would prob- ably profibit an increase in tfeir use, at least in tfe sfort run, by eben tfe poorest of newly legalized immigrants. Nonetfeless, California sfould be prepared for any future legalization program. After tfe legalization of nearly 3 million unautforized immigrants in 1986, indibidual states receibed federal impact grants to felp offset tfe state’s costs associated witf tfe newly legalized immigrants. If Englisf-language proficiency becomes a requirement in a new legalization program, tfe costs of probiding classes could be significant. We suggest tfat California lobby bigorously for any future impact grants to offset any related expenditures. Please bisit tfe report’s publication page fttp://www.ppic.org/main/publication.asp?i=869 to find related resources. 3 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 3 Introduction Recent estimates suggest that the United States is home to approfimately 1b million unauthorized immigrants, b.7 million of whom reside in California (Passel and Cohn, b009). The general public is deeply—and often vociferously—concerned about the effects these immi - grants may have on the economy and, in particular, on labor markets and public assistance programs. Policy- makers continue to face difficult decisions about whether and how to legalize some of these immigrants, and to weigh the costs and benefits of doing so. An important factor for policymakers’ consideration is the effect of legalization on employment outcomes. The last major overhaul of immigration law, the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986, included a num - ber of approaches similar to those under consideration today. IRCA legalized nearly 3 million immigrants, but it also imposed sanctions for employers who knowingly hired immigrants who were not authorized to work. Studies that followed the immigrants legalized under IRCA found that their occupational prospects and wages improved by the early 1990s, approfimately four years after gaining legal status. A new legalization program could reshape the occupational prospects for millions of unauthorized immi - grants and, perhaps, for native workers as well. It could also involve a number of consequences for the general economy. In this report, we seek to determine whether the efperiences of the IRCA legalization would be predictive of a new legalization program today. We use data from a more recent era (b003–b004) and efamine outcomes for all formerly unauthorized immigrants, not just those from Mefico and Central America. We analyze how acquir- ing Legal Permanent Residence (LPR) status (commonly referred to as a “green card”) affects the employment outcomes of individuals who previously worked illegally in the United States. Using data from the New Immigrant Survey (NIS), a representative sample of new LPRs from b003, we efamine the employment outcomes of immi- grants who resided and worked in the United States before acquiring LPR status. We also efamine whether outcomes differ between workers who crossed the border illegally (“crossers”) and workers who overstayed a temporary visa or violated employment restrictions (“overstayers”), by comparing their outcomes to those of immigrant workers who were never unauthorized before acquiring LPR status (“continuously legal ”). Finally, we consider the wider economic impact of legal - ization, including its effects on the jobs and wages of native workers. We consider the possibility of increased taf revenue as well as potential increases in the use and cost of public assistance. Any legislation would certainly address eligibility Policymakers continue to face difcult decisions about whether and how to lebalize some of these immibrants, and to weibh the costs and benefits of doinb so. A note on terminology In tfis report, we refer to immigrants in tfe United States witfout proper documentation as “unautforized” immigrants. Wfy use tfis term ratfer tfan “undocumented” or “illegal” immigrants? First, for precision. Many immigrants libe and work in tfe United States witfout proper legal autfority. Howeber, many of tfese immigrants do fabe documents. For instance, tourist bisas permit entry but not residency or work. And student bisas permit residency but do not always allow work. In addi- tion, some immigrants obtain fraudulent work documents, sucf as false Social Security numbers. For tfese reasons, “undocumented” is not an entirely accurate description of many immigrants’ situations. Second, for neutrality. Tfe terms “illegal” and “undocu- mented” are often politicized. By relying on “unautforized,” we wisf to mobe past old debates ober language and pusf tfe public discussion about immigration into more objectibe, accurate, and—we fope—fruitful territory. Immigrant Legalization 4 www.ppic.org 4 requirements for an array of public assistance programs, but it might also require a minimum level of English-language proficiency. Following the passage of IRCA, the federal government offered grants to help state governments pro- vide health and education services to the formerly unau- thorized, and more recent immigration reform proposals have considered similar grants. California should lobby for a fair share of such funding—a share that should be based on the potential size of the legalizing population. Of course, there are many non-economic reasons to implement comprehensive immigration reform that includes legalization. Indeed, employment outcomes should not be the only—and perhaps not even the most important—consideration in weighing the potential benefits of a legalization program. Legalization could, for efample, encourage active citizenship, including participa- tion in and connection to the community; bring people out of the shadows; and prevent deportations that can separate families, including those with U.S.-born children. Does Legalization Cfange Employment Outcomes? Immigrants without LPR status or temporary work visas might have more limited employment options than those who are legally permitted to work. They might accept jobs that do not fully use their skills, which could depress their wages. Their jobs might be less stable or more dangerous, and they might be more subject to wage fraud. We might efpect that newly legalized immigrants could find jobs where earnings are higher and conditions are better, either within the same occupation or in a new one. Indeed, research that followed immigrants given amnesty under IRCA found that their employment outcomes did improve after legalization. In this study, we provide additional evidence on the relationship between legalization and employment out- comes. Specifically, we efamine outcomes for immigrants who were granted LPR status in b003, even though these immigrants gained their legal status not through a legal- ization program but rather through the standard immigra- tion channels already in efistence. We compare outcomes for the three legal categories defined above: crossers, overstayers, and the continuously legal. b To learn whether acquiring LPR status leads to improvements in employment outcomes, we use immi- grants’ self-reported occupation and wages. We begin with each immigrant’s first job after entering and living in this country (and before acquiring LPR status). We then efamine the job each immigrant held at the time of the interview (after acquiring LPR status). Unauthorized Immigrantf in the NIS The NIS seeks to provide a nationally representative dataset of immigrants who have recently gained LPR status. It gathers detailed information on each respondent’s migra- tion and employment history, educational attainment, English-language ability, entry visa, marital and family status, and other demographic characteristics. This infor- mation allows us to trace the history of each respondent’s time in the United States, including any time that he or she may have lived or worked in this country before acquiring legal status. Since we efpect LPR status to have different employment effects on immigrants with different prior legal statuses, educational levels, and language skills, these data provide us with an efcellent opportunity to answer our research questions. The NIS does not focus solely on unauthorized immi- grants; nor was it designed to be a representative sample of the unauthorized immigrant population. Rather, it focuses on the records of all foreign-born persons who gained LPR status between May and November b003. The surveyed group includes respondents who violated immigration laws as well as those whose tenure in this country has been entirely legal. We find that the unauthorized portion of the NIS sample and other estimates of the unauthorized immi- grant population are quite similar. 3 In our analysis we focus on respondents who reported their occupations in both the pre-LPR period and at the time of the interview. Roughly half of these 4,486 respon- dents were continuously legal, and the remainder were fairly evenly split between crossers and overstayers (see Table 1). 5 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 5 Table 1. A breakdown of variablef by pre-LPR legal ftatuf revealf fignificant differencef Variable CrofferOverftaberContinuouflb legal Demographic trait Sfare of sample (%) Female (%) Married (%) Mean number of cfildren Mean age at NIS interbiew Mean age at first job during last U.S. trip Mean duration of pre-LPR job (years) Mean time elapsed since start of pre-LPR job (years) 25.9 36.8 6 7. 8 2.3 35.8 24.8 3.8 11 . 0 2 7. 6 45.8 80.7 1. 6 3 7.1 31. 2 2.55.9 46.4 44.4 75. 5 1. 2 35.0 32. 3 1.4 2.7 Countrb of origin (%) Mexico Otfer Latin America and Caribbean East Asia, Soutf Asia, and Pacific Sub-Safaran Africa Europe and Central Asia Middle East and Nortf Africa All otfer 38.5 5 0 .1 4.50.8 2.5 1.0 2.6 16 .4 29.0 18 . 0 8.3 18 .7 5.44 .1 3.0 18 . 5 38.8 8.2 2 2 .1 5.0 4.4 a dmiffion claff a (%) Spouse of citizen Cfild of citizen (younger tfan age 21, unmarried) Parent of citizen Cfild of citizen (age 21 plus and/or married) Spouse of LPR Sibling of citizen Employment preference Dibersity lottery Refugee/asylee Legalization Otfer 33 .1 1. 6 2.5 1.7 3.3 0.9 3.6 0.7 8.2 3 7. 3 7.1 53.0 1.7 4.3 1.4 0.8 2 .1 11 . 4 4.8 11 . 5 3.6 5.5 30.4 1.9 1.9 0.9 0.9 7. 3 21.0 14 . 3 8.6 0.5 12 . 3 Helped by a relatibe to get current job (%) Current employer is a relatibe (%) 18 . 3 2.3 11 .1 3.2 18 .7 3.9 Human capital Years of education Years of education in tfe United States Less tfan figf scfool diploma (%) Higf scfool diploma (%) Some college (%) Bacfelor’s degree or figfer (%) 9. 5 1. 3 61.7 22.6 8.67. 2 13 . 7 1.0 22.9 28.7 12 . 9 35.4 14 . 3 0.9 20.8 21.1 10. 2 48.0 Excellent Englisf (%) Very good Englisf (%) Good Englisf (%) 14 . 4 7. 9 32.8 31.1 8.8 29.0 28.8 7. 7 26.8 Number of obfervationf 9451, 071 2,470 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. a class of fmmfgrant admfssfon rbfbrs to thb way thb fmmfgrant acqufrbs LPr status (famfly sponsorbd, bmploymbnt prbfbrbncb, btc.). For morb on thfs, sbb Mongbr and rytfna (2009). Immigrant Legalization 6 www.ppic.org 6 These numbers are comparable to estimates of mode of entry among the total population of unauthorized immigrants in the nation, which suggest that approfimately 50 percent crossed the border illegally, 45 percent overstayed a visa, and the remainder violated the terms of a border crossing card (Pew Hispanic Center, b006). The average crosser was age b5 when starting his or her first job in this country, compared to age 31 for overstayers and age 3b for the continuously legal. Nearly 90 percent of crossers and nearly 50 percent of overstayers came from Mefico or other Latin American countries, whereas the continuously legal were more likely to have come from Asia and Europe. Although large portions of each group were admitted as the spouse or other relative of a U.S. citizen, there are differences in the other classes of admission. For efample, b1 percent of the continuously legal acquired legal status through employment preferences, whereas the same is true for only 11 percent of overstayers and 4 percent of crossers. But perhaps most striking are the differences in formal education. Crossers have an average of 9.5 years of formal education, overstayers have 13.7 years, and the continu- ously legal have 14.3 years. These figures are reflected in the breakdown of educational levels—61.7 percent of crossers lack a high school diploma, whereas 48 percent of the continuously legal have a bachelor’s degree or higher. In addition, crossers are more likely to be men, to have more children, and to report lower levels of proficiency in English than their counterparts. Occupational Mobility To arrive at a better understanding of the relationship between immigrant status and the labor market, we begin our analysis by comparing the occupational mobility of unauthorized workers (crossers and overstayers) to the mobility of immigrants with no unauthorized immigra- tion history (the continuously legal). Of course, it is possible that immigrants sort themselves into these three groups through personal decisions and characteristics we cannot observe, but which affect their earnings in the period before acquiring LPR status, after earning LPR status, or both. In an effort to control for these unobservable factors, we consider the role of characteristics that we can observe (and which might serve as profies for those that we can- not observe)—for instance, the immigrant’s demographic characteristics, country of origin, year of entry into the United States, and the relationship or situation that made LPR status possible. For efample, we might efpect that social networks play an important role in employment out - comes. We cannot directly observe these networks, but we can discern whether an immigrant works for a relative, had help from a relative in finding his or her current job, or was sponsored by a family member for admission to LPR status. Our occupational mobility findings rely on earnings that we impute from the b000 census, using the gender- specific median earnings of foreign-born individuals in each occupation (referred to as “occupational earnings”). We measure occupational mobility in this way because imputed earnings allow us to evaluate occupational change in an easily understood metric. We first compare earnings differences observed across the three groups of immigrants at the time of their first U.S. jobs. We neft compare the differences in earnings growth between their first U.S. jobs and the jobs held when they were interviewed some time after earning LPR status. We then factor in the observable characteristics listed in Table 1. 4 Most of the differences in earnings among immigrants who have not fet received green cards are explained bf skills and demographics rather than legal status. t im P Annell/Corbi S 7 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 7 First U.S. Job We efpect average pre-LPR earnings from employment to be linked to the legal right to work. And, indeed, we find that unauthorized immigrants earned much less than those who were continuously legal. Figure 1 shows these substantial differences in unadjusted earnings. Among men, crossers were paid 31 percent less and overstayers 13 percent less than their continuously legal counterparts. Among women, the respective differences were b8 percent and 10 percent. Although differences in occupational earnings may be due to legal status, other factors play a significant role. Adjusting for demographic characteristics (age, marital status, number of children, and educational attainment), we find that the U.S. state of residence, year of arrival, and country of origin efplain most of the differences in earnings between crossers and the continuously legal. 5 Factoring in the way these immigrants ultimately received their green cards (e.g., family sponsorship or employment) efplains even more of the pre-LPR differences. In short, most of the differences in occupational earnings before immigrants receive their green cards are efplained by skill and demographic factors rather than by legal status. The “adjusted” occupational earnings in Figure 1 show that among men, only 1b percent of the difference in occupational earnings at the first U.S. job between the continuously legal and crossers, and only 10 percent of the difference between the continuously legal and overstayers, remain unefplained. For women, the respective figures are 8 percent and 7 percent. Occupational fobility to Post-bPR Job Because we can observe immigrants before and after they achieve LPR status, we can measure occupational mobility by comparing the occupational earnings from an immi - grant’s first job with those from the job held at the time of the interview (soon after an immigrant gained LPR status). 6 This comparison reveals that the occupational earnings of all three groups of immigrants increased (Table b). Over- stayers increased their occupational earnings by nearly $3,700, the largest dollar amount of all three groups, but crossers increased their occupational earnings by a greater percentage (b1%). The continuously legal still earned more than either group in the post-LPR job, but they had the smallest gains, both in dollars and in percentage gains. The higher rate of occupational earnings growth found among the two formerly unauthorized groups may be due to their change in legal status, but other factors may also play a role, as was the case in the earnings differences prior to gaining LPR status. We again consider other possible factors, such as demographic characteristics (for efample, educational attainment and English-language skills), U.S. state of residence, country of origin, class of immigrant admission, use of social networks in finding employment, and time spent in the United States. 7 Accounting for variations in demographic factors and state of residence across the three groups does not greatly diminish the gap in occupational earnings growth between Figure 1. Personal characteristics and other dfactors explain much of the occupational earnings dibderence in rst U.S. jobs Occupational earnings ($1000sf SOURCE: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 cbnsus. Unadjusted Adjusted Men Crosser Overstayer Continuously lefal25 20 b5 b0 5 0 Unadjusted Adjusted Women Althoubh differences in occupational earninbs may be due to lebal status, other factors play a sibnificant role. Immigrant Legalization 8 www.ppic.org 8 the two formerly unauthorized groups and those who were continuously legal (Figure b shows the results for men). The gap remains around 1b percent after adding these factors. However, once we also consider year of arrival, the gains of crossers relative to the continuously legal disappear, whereas many of the gains for overstayers remain (about 7%). Add - ing measures of country of origin and class of admission does not change the size of this gap. The results fail to reveal greater occupational earnings growth among either female crossers or female overstayers than for their continuously legal counterparts. 8 We conclude from this analysis that former crossers make great gains in their post-LPR jobs relative to their first U.S. jobs (and relative to the continuously legal) mainly because they have been in the United States longer on average (11 years since their first U.S. job versus nearly 3 years; see Table 1) and have worked longer in their pre- LPR occupations. This longer time in the United States may have allowed them to gain valuable labor market efperience, which leads to higher occupational earnings. Restricting the sample to all immigrants who have lived in the United States for only 5 years or less also shows that crossers do not efperience occupational mobility attribut- able to gaining legal status. 9 In sum, for crossers, the occu- pational mobility gains from legalization are negligible; for overstayers, the gains are positive but relatively small. Why, then, are overstayers able to make gains after being granted legal status, while crossers apparently are not? The most likely efplanation is that immigrants who enter the United States without documentation generally have many fewer years of schooling and lower self-reported English-language skills. Over 60 percent of crossers do not have a high school diploma, compared to b3 percent of overstayers and b1 percent of the continuously legal (see Table 1). Only 14 percent of crossers report efcellent English-language ability, compared to 31 percent of over- stayers. Lack of legal status might hinder earnings oppor- tunities for overstayers—the more highly skilled group— but not for the less skilled (who generally start with a lower base of earnings in their first job). Possible reasons might include difference in hiring practices for skilled and unskilled jobs, different opportunities for advancement with skilled and unskilled jobs, or different obstacles to efiting one occupation and entering another. How important is education in efplaining differences in occupational mobility between crossers and overstayers? To answer this question, we construct a test where we consider the role of educational attainment more efplicitly for both types of formerly unauthorized LPRs. We find that educational attainment is more important than type Table 2. Median annual occupational earningf increafe more for formerly unauthorized immigrantf Croffer OverftaberContinuouflb legal First U.S. job $15 ,16 0 $19,7 27 $2 3 ,913 Job at post-LPR interbiew $18 , 272 $2 3 , 418 $2 5 , 613 Cfange $ 3 ,112 $3,692 $1,70 0 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 cbnsus. Earnings gain relative to the continuously legal (%f% SOURCE: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 cbnsus. ** Indfcatbs statfstfcally sfgnfcantly dfbrbnt growth at thb 1% lbvbl. and country of origin and year of arrival and demographic characterifticf and ftate Legal ftatuf and claff of admiffion Croffer Overftayerbb bb bb bb bb bb bb Types of control abbeb in each mob%el 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 –2 –4 Figure 2. Year of arrival in the Unitef States exblains occubational earnings gains for crossers (results for men) 9 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 9 of unauthorized efperience in efplaining occupational and earnings changes after achieving LPR status. Whether they are crossers or overstayers, immigrants with less than a high school education demonstrate no statistically reliable occupational mobility relative to the gains efperienced by the continuously legal (Figure 3). 10 The same is true for high school graduates in both groups. And although we find that those in both unauthorized groups with “some college efperience” are more occupationally mobile than the continuously legal, the evidence is not statistically reliable. However, we do find that the earnings gains for those with at least a college degree compare favorably to the continuously legal: 9 percent for crossers and nearly 11 percent for overstayers. Wage Growth As we have seen, earnings imputed from reported occu- pations indicate that high skill is associated with upward occupational mobility for the formerly unauthorized. But does a crosser or an overstayer earn more after legal- ization if he or she remains in the same occupation? For efample, LPR status might allow an immigrant working as an unauthorized housecleaner in a private home to find work as a unionized hotel maid. To answer this question, we turn to the self-reported wage data of the NIS cohort. We find no statistically reliable association between prior legal status and self-reported wages at the first U.S. job. 11 And when we estimate wage growth between the first U.S. job and the post-LPR job, we do not find a relationship between being a crosser or over - stayer and wage growth, relative to the continuously legal. 1b The potential for recall bias is greater among crossers than among the continuously legal, because the time between their first U.S. job and their self-reports was, on average, 11 and 3 years, respectively. We therefore con- ducted another test of wage growth within occupations. Restricting our analysis to immigrants in low-skill occu- pations (reducing our sample size to approfimately 500), we compared reported wages at the time of the post-LPR interview, which should not be subject to recall bias. We found that crossers and overstayers in low-skill occupations earn no more than—and therefore did not gain relative to— the continuously legal in these same low-skill occupations. Thus, we conclude that low-skill unauthorized immigrants do not make wage gains within their low-skill occupations after earning LPR status. 13 Jobf, Job Conditionf, and Job Searchef Although we are only able to observe the new LPRs for a relatively short time, we know that some changed occu- pations after their first U.S. job. However, many crossers report being employed as low-skill workers, such as maids, dishwashers, and construction laborers (Table 3). Two occupations stand out in terms of job efits for crossers: dishwashing and child care. In fact, no crossers who were dishwashers before earning LPR status remained in that occupation after earning LPR status. 14 Former dishwashers were most likely to move to other jobs in the food service industry, and former child care workers were most likely to transition to jobs as maids and housekeepers. Although these low-skill workers seldom moved into higher-paying jobs, it is possible that benefits or other nonfinancial aspects of the jobs improved. 15 Many overstayers also worked in very low-skill occu- pations in their first U.S. jobs. The highest rates of efit were Earnings changes r%elative to the continuously legal (%f% SOURCE: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 cbnsus. * Indfcatbs statfstfcally sfgnfcantly dfbrbnt growth at thb 5% lbvbl. ** Indfcatbs statfstfcally sfgnfcantly dfbrbnt growth at thb 1% lbvbl. Some college High school graduate Less than high school follege graduate frosser Overstayer Educational levelb5 b0 5 0 –5 –b0 –b5 Figure 3. A college degree is more importaft thaf former legal status if predictifg occupatiofal earfifgs gaifs a * ** Immigrant Legalization 10 www.ppic.org 10 among those working as grounds maintenance laborers, cashiers, and janitors or building cleaners. Grounds main - tenance laborers who changed jobs generally moved on to work as painters, inspectors, or welding operators. Cashiers who changed jobs became retail salespersons, receptionists, or health care aides. In contrast, the top ten occupations among continuously legal immigrants include some very highly skilled jobs, such as software engineers, postsecond -ary school teachers, and registered nurses, both before and after earning LPR status. Rates of job efit for this group are low (over 60% in the top ten occupations were in the same occupation before and after earning LPR status). Although we observe no improvements in occupations or earnings for crossers, it is possible that job conditions or the nonfinancial aspects of their jobs might improve after legalization. Ideally, we would like to be able to measure Occupation Croffer OverftaberContinuouflb legal r ank % in firft u.S. job % in different job at LP r interview % in job poft-LPr r ank% in firft u .S. job % in different job at LP r interview % in job poft-LPr r ank% in firft u.S. job % in different job at LP r interview % in job poft-LPr Maids and fousekeepers 17. 4 5 7. 7 7. 2 24.4 55.6 3.443.4 22.5 2.9 Agricultural workers 27. 3 71.9 2.7 Janitors and building cleaners 36.0 75. 5 5.533.7 73.9 2.253.3 39.7 3.6 Disfwasfers 45.210 0.0 0.5 Cfild care workers 5 5.186.7 1. 673.0 55.7 2.2 Cooks 64.4 71. 8 5.043.4 4 7. 3 3 .1 Construction laborers 74 .1 6 8 .1 3.082.3 71.9 1.7 Casfiers 83.7 7 7. 8 2.715.9 76 .1 2.715.9 34.6 5.0 Grounds maintenance workers 93.5 63.5 2.4102.0 8 6 .1 0.3 Sewing macfine operators 102.5 73.0 1.0 Retail salespersons 53.363 .1 3.682.4 3 7. 9 2.5 Waiters and waitresses 63.366.7 2.633.4 49.0 2 .1 Nursing, psycfiatric, and fome fealtf aides 92.0 42.9 3.072.5 39.4 2.8 Computer software engineers 23.92 7. 2 4.3 Postsecondary teacfers 63.063.0 1.7 Registered nurses 92.42 0 .1 2.4 Stock clerks and order fillers 102.3 4 7. 7 1.7 Totalf 49.274 . 3 31. 5 33.264.4 24.8 32.63 7. 6 2 9.1 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. Table 3. Crofferf are the moft likely to change occupationf 11 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org differences between benefits in the first U.S. jobs and post- LPR jobs, but we are able to compare benefits only at the jobs held by members of the three legal status groups at the time they were interviewed. The few measures available in the NIS data do not suggest a systematic association of legal status with job quality as measured by benefits. A higher percentage of crossers than of the continuously legal were offered insur - ance through their jobs (75% versus 65%), but there were no real differences in the percentage who were offered paid vaca - tion or long-term disability coverage (see Table 4). Previous research suggests that some job conditions improve with legalization in ways that we cannot measure in this study. For efample, Gass Kandilov and Kandilov (b009) found that legal agricultural workers are more likely than unauthorized agricultural workers to receive health care coverage and bonuses. And a study of low-skill labor- ers in three major metropolitan areas by Bernhardt et al. (b009) found that rates of workers efperiencing minimum wage violations in the previous week were highest among unauthorized immigrant women (47%) and lowest among native workers of both sefes (approfimately 18%). Perhaps it takes newly legalized immigrants some time to get a better job. To efamine this possibility, we look at several questions in the NIS about whether immigrants are looking for work and whether that work is the same or different from the type of work in which they are cur- rently engaged. We find that the continuously legal are the most likely to respond that they are looking for another job (30%) and that crossers are the least likely (b3%; see Table 5). Among those who are looking for work, crossers or overstayers report looking for a “different kind of work ” in slightly higher percentages (61% and 58% for crossers and overstayers, respectively, and 5b% for the continuously legal, although the differences are not statistically signifi- cant). This may mean that crossers who are looking for work are less satisfied with their current occupations than are the continuously legal. It is possible that improvement in occupation depends on increased training and improvement in English-language skills. At the time of the interview, which ranged from 4 to 13 months after gaining LPR status, the two groups of formerly unauthorized immigrants were no more likely to be enrolled in school than were the continuously legal (Table 6). A more detailed analysis that considers the role of other important predictive factors also indicates no dif- ferences by legal status. 16 It is possible that school enroll- ment among post-LPR crossers and overstayers would increase over time. But since these crossers and overstayers Table 4. Benefitf on the job do not differ much by former legal ftatuf Benefit CrofferOverftaberContinuouflb legal Insurance tfrougf job (%) 74 . 8 78.8 65.3 Paid bacation (%) 61. 0 63.3 59. 2 Long-term disability coberage (%) 38.6 43 .1 40.7 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. Table 5. Among thofe looking for another job, crofferf are flightly more likely to be feeking other kindf of work CrofferOverftaberContinuouflb legal Looking for anotfer job (%) 22.6 2 8 .1 30.2 Of tfose looking, seeking a different kind of work (%) 61. 4 5 7. 9 52 .1 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. Immigrant Legalization 12 www.ppic.org 12 should have anticipated their acquisition of LPR status well in advance (because they had a pending application), they might have invested in U.S. education already. Thus, it appears that job conditions do not improve markedly for immigrants after legalization, at least in the ways that we can measure and in the short term. In the long term, improvements may be found as immigrants change jobs and gain skills. However, in the 4 to 13 months after becoming LPRs, most immigrants are not looking for work, nor are they investing in education that would help them qualify for better jobs. Wfat Do Tfese Findings Suggest for a Legalization Program? Only a small proportion of upward occupational mobil- ity can be attributed to legalization and only for formerly unauthorized immigrants with higher levels of educa- tion. Further, self-reported wage growth does not appear to be associated with legalization. This casts doubt on the idea that a legalization program would, in fact, lead to improved occupations and higher wages for unautho- rized immigrants. Our findings differ from those of earlier research on the effects of IRCA (which granted amnesty to nearly 3 million unauthorized immigrants). In efplor- ing these differences, we first discuss the magnitude of the IRCA results, and we then consider the effects of a longer time frame for observing gains, the challenges of designing research that can isolate the effect of legalization, and the role of employer sanctions. Refultf from IRCA Prior research found greater gains to becoming legal after working in the United States without proper documen- tation than we do in this study. This research followed immigrants who were legalized as a result of IRCA in 1986 for four years, as reported in the Legalized Population Survey (199b). Estimates using these survey data find earn- ings gains for men of 15 percentage points (Rivera-Batiz, 1999), 9 percentage points (Amuedo-Dorantes, Bansak, and Rafael, b007), and 6 percentage points (Kossoudji and Cobb-Clark, b00b). Studies comparing the earnings of unauthorized agricultural workers to the earnings of agricultural workers with LPR status find differences of 4 percent (Pena, b010) and 5 percent (Gass Kandilov and Kandilov, b009). Although these studies considered differ- ent variables, they typically factored in time spent in the United States, education, and English-language skills. Time Horizon Studies conducted after the IRCA legalization relied on data collected for about four years after the formerly unauthorized acquired legal status. We measure occupa- tional mobility (using imputed earnings) and self-reported wages soon after LPR status was granted. Although employment outcomes may improve as more time passes Table 6. School enrollment if low among all groupf Croffer OverftaberContinuouflb legal Enrolled in Englisf classes (%) 10.9 13 . 2 14 . 0 Enrolled in otfer classes (%) 8 .1 11 . 6 10. 5 Enrolled in Englisf or otfer classes (%) 16 . 5 21.4 21.0 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. It appears that job conditions do not improve markedly for immibrants after lebalization. 13 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 13 after legalization, our research with the sample at hand does not suggest that they will. Most of the occupational earn - ings and wage differences between previously unauthorized and continuously legal immigrants at the time of their first job are efplained by skill-level differences. 17 Although we observe some change between the first U.S. job and the cur - rent job, we find that the formerly unauthorized were not any more likely than the continuously legal to be looking for new jobs or new types of jobs. We also find that the for - merly unauthorized were no more likely than the continu - ously legal to be building English-language or other skills outside the workforce (through schooling). Ifolating the Effect of Legalization To measure the effect of legalization on occupation and wage growth, we need to distinguish growth that is due to the policy change from growth that is due to change in the economy or other factors unrelated to legaliza- tion. Researchers attempt to separate these issues not by measuring absolute wage growth of the group efpected to efperience the policy change but by comparing the wage growth for that group to that for a presumably similar group not efpected to efperience the policy change. The difference can be thought of as the growth attributed to the policy change. In our research, we compare crossers and overstayers to the continuously legal immigrants who acquired LPR status at the same time as our sample but who were autho- rized to work in this country before receiving their green cards. We efpect that the two groups of formerly unau- thorized workers and the continuously legal would have efperienced general growth in the economy in the same way and thus we seek to attribute remaining changes in occupational mobility and wages efperienced by crossers and overstayers to legalization. It is also true that no matter how targeted policy changes are designed to be, they rarely affect only the group they were intended to help. In our study, the continuously legal group might not provide us with a perfect compari - son, because its members may have also efperienced gains in occupational mobility after acquiring LPR status. For efample, if they were able to change employers after transi - tioning from an H1-B visa to LPR status, their occupational mobility and wages may rise. However, the NIS data do not indicate any increase in the wages of our continuously legal sample after acquiring LPR status (once we account for such factors as number of years in the United States). 18 In previous research on the IRCA era, attributing the wage growth of the previously unauthorized to legalization may have been even more challenging. IRCA legalized nearly 3 million low-skill workers and, in doing so, dramat - ically increased the supply of workers who were both low- skill and legal. At the same time, new employer sanctions against the hiring of unauthorized workers were toughened. Each of these actions could have affected both the targeted group (the formerly unauthorized) and the likely compari - son groups: (1) the low-skill workers who were legal before and after IRCA and (b) the low-skill immigrant workers who remained unauthorized after IRCA. Comparing the wages of formerly unauthorized low- skill workers to those of low-skill workers who were legal workers both before and after IRCA might make wage growth appear greater than it is. Because IRCA legalized so many immigrants, the supply of legal low-skill workers may have increased sufficiently that the wages of the group that was legal before IRCA might have actually fallen after IRCA. Thus, the gap between the two groups appears smaller, but this is in part because the wages of one group have fallen while the wages of the other have risen. Not all of the convergence between groups can be attributed to growth in the wages of the formerly unauthorized. Simi- larly, the introduction of sanctions against the hiring of Althoubh employment outcomes may improve as more time passes after lebalization, our research does not subbest that they will. Immigrant Legalization 14 www.ppic.org 14 No matter how tarbeted policy chanbes are desibned to be, they rarely affect only the broup they were intended to help. unauthorized workers makes employers less willing to pay unauthorized workers as much as they would receive in the absence of sanctions. This means that these workers are an inappropriate comparison group, because the relatively higher wages of previously unauthorized workers at least partly represent the worsening conditions for unauthorized workers. In both instances, the result would be an overesti - mation of the effect of legalization. An alternative approach of using a group not affected by the amnesty may seem like a reasonable strategy. However, such a group may be differentially affected by changes in the economy or other relevant factors that may change over time. Not surprisingly, the results of previous studies are sensitive to the choice of comparison group, as seen in the wide range of relative gains reported above. The study that compares earnings for unauthorized immigrants after legalization to, arguably, the most appropriate group (rela- tively young Latino men with limited labor market efpe- rience) finds the smallest effects of legalization on wages (Kossoudji and Cobb-Clark, b00b). However, even this group may have been negatively affected by IRCA (Bansak and Raphael, b001), and the downward pressure on the comparison group may thus lead to overstating the benefits of acquiring legal status. Strength of Employer Sanctionf We also consider earnings gains separately for crossers and overstayers, which is not the case in those studies finding larger gains in earnings (Rivera-Batiz, 1999; Amuedo- Dorantes, Bansak, and Raphael, b007). Immediately fol - lowing IRCA’s implementation, employers of all types were probably concerned about the employer sanctions that were part of the legislation. In the current era, employers of the highly skilled are more likely than employers of low-skill workers to worry about employment law violations. This should have different effects on the wages and job oppor - tunities for high-skill (mostly overstayers) and low-skill (mostly crossers) unauthorized workers. Employers of low-skill workers probably correctly assess the very low probability that they will ever be caught or fined for having hired unauthorized workers. The rela- tively ineffective sanctions mean that employers do not pay low-skill laborers differently because of their legal status. In the period immediately following IRCA, employers likely efpected that the newly approved employer sanc- tions for hiring unauthorized workers would have teeth. That does not appear to be the case now. Indeed, because we find that there are no real differences in occupational mobility or reported wages between low-skill unauthorized immigrants (who are primarily crossers) and low-skill continuously legal immigrants, it appears that employers correctly assess the odds of being sanctioned for hiring undocumented workers as low and pay all low-skill workers the same low rates. Employers of high-skill workers might be more likely to be caught if they violate employment law. The cost of the fines and of losing a trained employee because of employ- ment law violations might be too great for such employers, and they might avoid hiring unauthorized workers in the first place. After a high-skill unauthorized immigrant gains legal status, he or she could successfully apply for jobs that were formerly closed off. Because our study separates high- skill workers (mostly overstayers) from low-skill workers (mostly crossers), we may be in a position to observe an effect of employer sanctions on the occupational mobility and reported wages of unauthorized overstayers after they become legal. Legalization Today Our findings are more in line with the more conservative estimates of occupational and wage gains estimated in the earlier studies of IRCA. We believe that the job prospects of formerly unauthorized immigrants with higher levels of skill and education would improve under a legalization 15 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 15 program. These higher-skilled immigrants are more likely to be overstayers than crossers. However, recent studies estimate that the group with the greatest efpected earnings growth— those with a bachelor’s degree or higher—constitute a rela - tively small share of the unauthorized immigrant population, just 15 percent in b008 (Passel and Cohn, b009). It seems unlikely that the employment outcomes of low-skill unauthorized immigrants will improve unless they are able to improve their skill levels. 19 Nearly half of the unauthorized immigrants in this country do not have a high school education. In b008, b9 percent were estimated to have less than a ninth grade education, and an additional 18 percent had some high school education but did not graduate (Passel and Cohn, b009). We believe that the earnings of low-skill workers do not improve after legalization partly because the threat of employer sanc- tions is ineffective. If the threat were effective, employers would value low-skill legal workers more than low-skill unauthorized workers, but that does not appear to be the case. Another critical factor to consider will be the role of the economy. This particular sample of crossers and overstayers was granted LPR status in b003, during an economic boom. Should legalization occur in b010 (or even thereafter, depending on the duration of the currently depressed economy), employment and wage gains are likely to be even smaller. Thus, we believe that unless low-skill unauthorized immigrants can increase their skill levels, they are unlikely to see any improvement in their employ- ment outcomes. However, employment outcomes should not be the only consideration, or perhaps even the most important consideration, in weighing the potential benefits of a legalization program. How Migft Legalization Affect tfe Larger Economy? Many believe that legalizing 1b million unauthorized immi - grants will profoundly affect not only the immigrants and their families but also the general economy of this nation. In this section, we consider the effects of legalization on three areas: native workers’ wages, public assistance programs, and taf revenues. It is also worth noting that newly legalized immigrants may invest more in their U.S. communities than they did before earning legal status. Legal immigrants are less likely to move within the United States than are unau- thorized immigrants (Passel and Cohn, b009). After legal- izing through IRCA, Mefican immigrants were less likely to send money to Mefico, and if they did remit they sent less than when they were unauthorized (Amuedo-Dorantes and Mazzolari, forthcoming b010). Labor Market Outcomef for Nativef Previous research has suggested that the impact of immi- gration on native workers is linked to their skill level. Most research points toward a negligible effect on native high- skill workers (Borjas, b003; Orrenius and Zavodny, b007), whereas low-skill U.S. workers may suffer in competition with low-skill immigrants (Borjas, b003; Orrenius and Zavodny, b007; Peri, b007). Because we find little change in occupations or wages after legalizing, we do not believe that the legalization of immigrants would affect the wages of natives. In the short term, we do not efpect that a legal- ization program would increase competition with either Legalization alone is unlikelf to improve emplofment outcomes for low-skill workers. AP Photo/ mArCio Jo Se S AnC hef Immigrant Legalization 16 www.ppic.org 16 natives or previously legal low-skill immigrants, nor do we efpect shortages in occupations that currently employ a high proportion of these workers. In the longer term, if formerly unauthorized low-skill immigrants improve their skills and can compete with low-skill natives, it is possible that wages for the latter two groups might decline. However, we do not observe widespread investments in education by the formerly unauthorized, at least in the short term. Public Affiftance Programf In almost all cases, unauthorized immigrant adults are ineligible for public assistance, including such programs as Food Stamps and Temporary Assistance for Needy Fami- lies (TANF). Yet there is concern among some of the public and policymakers that unauthorized immigrants are find- ing a way to receive benefits through these programs. In California, there is a movement to place an initiative on the ballot that would strip benefits from the citizen children of unauthorized immigrants (Watanabe, b009). In the 1990s, there was public concern that recent immigrants, especially those legalized under IRCA, were relying heavily on public assistance through programs such as Aid to Families with Dependent Children. In fact, states did receive State Legalization Impact Assistance Grants (SLIAG) from the federal government to help defer the costs of newly legalized immigrants. However, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconcilia- tion Act of 1996 specifically denied benefits to immigrants who have had LPR status for fewer than five years. b0 Family sponsors of new LPR immigrants had to “deem” part of their income toward support of the new immigrants, effec- tively raising the incomes of the new LPRs. The rules barring welfare receipt for recent immigrants are still in place and would probably be included in any new legislation that provides a pathway to legalization for the currently unauthorized. Means-tested federal benefit programs for which new LPRs and unauthorized immi- grants are ineligible include Food Stamps (now called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP), Supplemental Security Income, TANF, and Medicaid. The only efceptions for unauthorized immigrants are for pregnant women—who can receive Medicaid—and children under age 18. Citizen children are eligible for benefits. States may choose to use their own funding under these programs to assist some types of immigrants ineligible under federal law. In California, for efample, the children of unauthorized immigrants can receive assistance through CalWORKs, the state version of TANF. Thus, almost all new LPRs or immigrants who receive legal status through a legalization program would remain ineligible for federal public assistance in the short run, with the possible efception of the Earned Income Taf Credit (EITC). However, here we consider the family incomes of the newly legalized and compare them to the approfimate TANF and SNAP eligibility rates at those levels of income in U.S. households to demonstrate the gap between eligibility and potential need. There are two important caveats. First, TANF eligibility is not deter- mined by poverty alone but rather by a complef series of calculations that measure different types of income and assets. Second, our measure of poverty is imperfect. We consider only the income of married or partnered adults. We do not include income from children or other coresi- dent family members, assistance from outside the house- hold, or a few other, less common sources of income that are not reported in the NIS. We find high rates of poverty among our sample of NIS adults who were working both before and after earn - ing LPR status. Using b004 data, Passel (b009) estimated that only b1 percent of unauthorized adults were living in poverty. However, using our measures, we find that roughly a quarter of overstayers and crossers and 44 percent of the continuously legal were living in poverty, as depicted by the orange and dark blue bars in Figure 4. Most of those who are poor are concentrated below 50 percent of the federal poverty level. However, in the case of the continuously legal, it is likely that the NIS estimates do not accurately reflect the economic conditions of their families. b1 Former overstayers are most likely to have family incomes above b00 percent of the poverty threshold, with nearly 60 percent of them having incomes this high, com- pared to 43 percent of former crossers. We find that a major - 17 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 17 ity in all groups have family incomes above 130 percent of the poverty threshold (an approfimation for Food Stamp eligibility): 64 percent of crossers, 73 percent of overstayers, and 60 percent of the continuously legal. Although these measures are inefact, few families with incomes in efcess of 130 percent of the poverty level qualify for TANF or SNAP (Food Stamps). Rangarajan, Castner, and Clark (b005) reported that only 8 percent of these families were eligible for TANF and 4 percent were eligible for SNAP, using estimates from household models of program participation (Table 7). At the other end of the spectrum, families with incomes below 50 percent of the poverty level were very likely to be eligible for TANF (83%) and SNAP (76%). Recall that the vast majority of newly legalized immi- grants would not be eligible for TANF or SNAP in their first five years, regardless of their poverty status or need. And NIS data suggest that there is little or no evidence that immigrants who are ineligible are finding ways to circum- vent the system and receive benefits. We find that only 3.9 percent receive Food Stamps, although a larger number are probably eligible, based on their status as former refu- gees or through eligible children. It seems likely that the only benefit most new legalized immigrants would be eligible for would be EITC, which can be claimed on federal taf returns by low-income workers. The aim of the EITC is to increase work participation and work effort while also alleviating poverty for working-poor families. Immigrants currently filing federal taf returns with Taf Payer Identification numbers or invalid Social Security numbers are not eligible for EITC. However, a high percentage of unauthorized immigrants work, and many live in poverty (Figure 4), and so, at the time of legal- ization and receiving a valid Social Security number, newly legalized immigrants could file for EITC (Camarota, b001). Tax Receiptf Unauthorized immigrants pay a variety of tafes, although probably at different rates than legal immigrants and natives. The unauthorized pay sales tafes and income tafes and contribute to Social Security (which they cannot claim); it is estimated that as of b00b, they have paid hundreds of billions of dollars to Social Security (Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors, b005). The NIS data indi - cate that a substantial share of unauthorized immigrants report filing federal tafes in the year before earning LPR status. It should be noted that our estimates rely on the self- reports of a group who may feel an incentive to overreport compliance with federal law. However, given that b6 percent of immigrants in our sample reported having crossed the border without documentation (Table 1), it seems likely that interviewees felt comfortable in the interview and would have accurately reporting their taf-paying behavior. This Percentage SOURCE: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 Cbnsus. Crosser Overstayer Continuously legal Legal status Less than 5f 5f to 99 1ff to 129 1bf to 2ff 2ff+ 7f 6f 5f 4f bf 2f 1f f Figure 4. Many new LPR famifies mfive in pbverty % of federal poverty level Table 7. Many new LPR familief would receive public affiftance if their immigration ftatuf allowed it Houfehold income af a percentage of the federal povertb level Percentage of u .S. houfeholdf eligible Ta NF SNaP Less tfan 50 8376 50 to 99 3374 100 to 129 1654 130 to 200 84 Source: rangarajan, castnbr, and clark (2005). Immigrant Legalization 18 www.ppic.org 18 after legalization, but this would result from increased com - pliance (which is already high) rather than from substantial increases in earnings. For this reason, we efpect that any overall increase in taf revenues would be small. Conclusion Legalization of the estimated 1b million unauthorized immigrants residing in the United States would lead to both economic benefits and costs for the nation. Some arguments for comprehensive immigration reform suggest that legalizing immigrants will help end the current reces- sion. This seems unlikely. Our research suggests that ear- lier findings from the IRCA era may overstate anticipated earnings from a new reform, at least in the short run. We do efpect occupational mobility to improve for formerly unauthorized immigrants with higher skill levels. When compared to the continuously legal, their occupa- tional earnings growth was about 9 to 10 percent. These higher-skill unauthorized immigrants are more likely to be overstayers than crossers, but unauthorized immigrants with college degrees are found in both groups. Lower-skill unauthorized immigrants are not likely to efperience strong occupational mobility as a result of a legalization program (although their occupational earnings grow over time in the United States). It will be important that any new legislation give legalized immigrants incentives to improve their skills, especially in English. The majority of studies investigating the effect of legalizing immigrants on natives’ earnings suggest that the effects are slightly negative for workers with low skill group of unauthorized immigrants may also be more likely to have filed federal tafes than unauthorized immigrants who were not just a year away from becoming LPRs. Thus, our estimates may overstate the taf-paying rates of the gen - eral population of unauthorized immigrants. Our estimates suggest that 87 percent of former crossers and 91 percent of overstayers filed federal taf returns in b00b (Table 8). Only 59 percent of continuously legal immigrants filed tafes in b00b, but this lower per - centage is due in part to the much lower percentage that were required to do so. In estimating whether a family was required to file a federal taf return in b00b, we consider family structure, gross income, and the taf-filing thresholds in b00b. bb We find that both groups of formerly unauthor - ized immigrants appear to file federal tafes at rates higher than those who are required to (i.e., many earned less than the minimum b00b taf filing threshold for their family size and composition but filed federal taf returns anyway). Once we control for who is required to file tafes, we find that taf payment rates increase very slightly. The con - tinuously legal were the least likely to report having filed taf returns in b00b after controlling for whether or not their income met the taf-filing threshold, and overstayers were the most likely, at 94 percent. It seems likely that income taf revenues at the state and federal levels would increase Table 8. Moft unauthorized immigrantf filed 2002 federal tax returnf Croffer OverftaberContinuouflb legal Required to file (%) 80.3 82 .1 58.0 Filed federal taxes (%) 8 7. 0 90.5 58.5 Filing as a % of required (%) 90.3 9 4 .1 85.0 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. Our estimates subbest that 87 percent of former crossers and 91 percent of overstayers filed federal tax returns in 2002. 19 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 19 levels. Since we find no improvements in occupational mobility or wages for the lowest skill levels in the short run, we do not efpect that legalizing immigrants would place any increased pressure on the wages of low-skill natives or low-skill legal immigrants. Taf revenues may increase, although many unauthorized immigrants already file federal and state taf returns and pay sales and payroll tafes. We found that about 90 percent of unauthorized immigrants filed federal taf returns in the year before gaining LPR status. We efpect that increases in taf reve- nues resulting from increased earnings among the for- merly unauthorized would be modest. Although we find that only 4 to 5 percent of formerly unauthorized immigrants participate in SNAP, their low income levels suggest that a higher percentage are actually eligible. We note that EITC filing may increase. One ques - tion that often arises is whether the currently unauthorized will use Food Stamps and other public assistance programs in greater proportion if they become legal. This will depend largely on how legislation is written. Currently, new LPRs are barred from receiving TANF in many states, although some states, such as California, do provide benefits to the children of new immigrants (including the children of the unauthorized). Signature gatherers have been working recently to place an initiative on the ballot to deny these benefits in California. Massachusetts is considering reduc - ing some types of health care coverage for those holding LPR status for less than five years (Goodnough, b009). How benefits will be used by newly legalized immi - grants may depend more on legislation determining their eligibility than on their incomes and assets. The federal and state governments will need to weigh the cost of providing benefits against the benefit of providing them. In planning for comprehensive immigration reform, it will be important to weigh the need to require that newly legalized immi- grants become self-sufficient members of society against the evidently low levels of resources available within their fami - lies. The costs of not ensuring minimum levels of well-being will ultimately be borne by the children of the formerly unauthorized, many of whom are already U.S. citizens. Finally, after IRCA, the federal government provided states with funding through SLIAG to help state and local governments provide public assistance (including education) to the formerly unauthorized. Research has shown that states such as California, with large numbers of immigrants, are likely to disproportionately bear the costs of immigration, while the federal government retains most of the benefits (National Research Council, 1997). It is imperative that California be prepared to meet the new resource demands of a legalization program, especially if the legislation requires that legalized immigrants increase their English-language proficiency. Educational capac- ity will need to be increased at both the state and local levels. Gonzalez (b007a) provides evidence that the provi- sion of public and free ESL (English as a second language) courses is either insufficient to meet demand or carried out at the efpense of other public programs in communities throughout the state. Now especially, during this period of severe budget constraints, California should be prepared to lobby for its fair share of whatever federal grants might become available as a part of any future comprehensive immigration reform. ● Tecfnical appendices to tfis report are abailable on tfe PPIC website: fttp://www.ppic.org/content/pubs/otfer/410LHR_appendix.pdf Immigrant Legalization 20 www.ppic.org 20 Notes 1 Passel and Cohn (b009). b Data are from the New Immigrant Survey, described in Tech- nical Appendif A, available—along with all other technical appendices—on the PPIC website. 3 Technical Appendif C compares the unauthorized portion of the NIS sample with other estimates of the unauthorized immi- grant population. 4 See Technical Appendif B for a discussion of our methodology. 5 For the full model, see Technical Appendif Table B1. 6 Interviews were typically conducted 4 months, but in some cases as much as 13 months, after acquiring LPR status. 7 See Technical Appendif Table Bb. 8 Results are shown in Technical Appendif Table Bb. 9 See Technical Appendif Table B3. 10 See Technical Appendif Table B4 for the full results. As in the previous models, we control for the full complement of efplana- tory variables. 11 We use this new measure to estimate the same models as for occupational mobility, and we use the same efplanatory factors. See Technical Appendif Table B6. 1b See Technical Appendif Table B7. 13 See Technical Appendif Table B8 for the full results. 14 Sample sizes within each occupation are small, and thus these results are not statistically significant. 15 See Technical Appendif Table B5 for our analysis of pre- and post-LPR occupational earnings for those working in the lowest- skill occupations before receiving LPR status. 16 See Technical Appendif Table B10. 17 These analyses are shown in Technical Appendif Tables B1 and B6. 18 See Technical Appendif B for a brief discussion of the poten- tial gains from adjusting from temporary legal status to LPR status. 19 This situation is similar to that of low-skill workers in general, who face limited job opportunities in an increasingly skill- intensive economy. High school dropouts earn substantially less than workers with at least some college education. Rouse and Kemple (b009) report that dropouts earn 46 percent less than workers with some college education (but who do not have a college degree)—a dramatic increase from the 1b percent earn- ings gap observed in 1984. b0 Important efceptions include refugees and asylees for nearly all programs, and for SNAP children under age 18 are covered. b1 In contrast to the two formerly unauthorized groups, con- tinuously legal families were more likely to either not state the amount of their income or report their income in foreign cur- rency, which makes their income appear lower. This information appears in a separate section of the NIS that asks about sources of income rather than in the section that asks about employment and wages. In addition, although their average family size was smaller and they were less likely to be married than the other groups, the spouses of continuously legal immigrants who were married were less likely to work. bb We estimated taf-filing requirements by totaling the income of individuals and their spouses or partners and considered the presence of children. See Internal Revenue Service (b003) for b00b requirements. Recall that income is reported separately from wages in the NIS. References Amuedo-Dorantes, Catalina, Cynthia Bansak, and Steven Raphael. b007. “Gender Differences in the Labor Market: Impact of IRCA’s Amnesty Provisions.” American Economic Review 97 (b): 41b–16. Amuedo-Dorantes, Catalina, and Francesca Mazzolari. Forth- coming b010. “Remittances to Latin America from Migrants in the United States: Assessing the Impact of Amnesty Programs.” Journal of Development Economics 91 (b): 3b3–35. Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, Department of Health and Human Services. b009. “Summary of Immigrant Eli - gibility Restrictions Under Current Law, As of b/b5/09.” Available at http://aspe.hhs.gov/hsp/immigration/restrictions-sum.shtml. 21 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 21 Bansak, Cynthia, and Steven Raphael. b001. “Immigration Reform and the Earnings of Latino Workers: Do Employer Sanctions Cause Discrimination?” bndustrial and Labor Relations Review 54 (b). Bernhardt, Annette, Ruth Milkman, Nik Theodore, Douglas Heckathorn, Mirabai Auer, James DeFilippis, Ana Luz González, Victor Narro, Jason Perelshteyn, Diana Polson, and Michael Spiller. b009. Broken Laws, Unprotected Workers: Violations of Employment and Labor Laws in America’s Cities . Available at www.nelp.org/page/-/brokenlaws/BrokenLawsReportb009 .pdf?nocdn=1. Borjas, George J. b003. “The Labor Demand Curve Is Downward Sloping: Reefamining the Impact of Immigration on the Labor Ma rke t .” Quarterly Journal of Economics 118 (4): 1335–74. Camarota, Steven A. b001. “Immigration from Mefico: Assess- ing the Impact on the United States.” Center for Immigration Studies. Available at www.cis.org/articles/b001/mefico/toc.html. Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors. b005. Economic Report of the President , b005. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Govern- ment Printing Office. Department of Health and Human Services. b003. “b003 HHS Poverty Guidelines.” Federal Register 68 (b6): 6456–58. Gass Kandilov, Amy, and Ivan Kandilov. b009. “The Effect of Legalization on Wages and Health Insurance: Evidence from the National Agricultural Workers Survey.” Working paper, Dept. of Agricultural and Resource Economics, North Carolina State University. Gonzalez, Arturo. b007a. California’s Commitment to Adult English Learners: Caught Between Funding and Need . San Francisco: Public Policy Institute of California. Gonzalez, Arturo. b007b. “Day Labor in the Golden State.” California Economic Policy 3 (3). Goodnough, Abby. b009. “Massachusetts Cuts Back Immigrants’ Health Care.” New York Times , September 1. Internal Revenue Service. b003. “b00b Taf Changes: Individuals.” Available at w w w.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=105145,00.html. Kossoudji, Sherrie A., and Deborah A. Cobb-Clark. b00b. “Com- ing out of the Shadows: Learning about Legal Status and Wages from the Legalized Population.” Journal of Labor Economics , b0 (3): 598–6b8. Monger, Randall, and Nancy Rytina. b009. U.S. Legal Permanent Residents: 2008 . Annual Flow Report. Washington, D.C.: Office of Immigration Statistics, Department of Homeland Security. National Research Council. 1997. The New Americans: Economic, Demographic, and Fiscal Effects of bmmigration , ed. James P. Smith and Barry Edmonston. Washington, D.C: National Academy Press. Orrenius, Pia M., and Madeline Zavodny. b007. “Does Immi- gration Affect Wages? A Look at Occupation-Level Evidence.” Labour Economics 14: 757–73. Passel, Jeffrey. b009. Unpublished tabulations from March CPS. Pew Hispanic Center. Passel, Jeffrey, and D’Vera Cohn. b009. A Portrait of Unauthor- ized bmmigrants in the United States . Pew Hispanic Center. Available at http://pewhispanic.org/files/reports/107.pdf. Pena, Anita Alves. b010. “Legalization and Immigrants in U.S. Agriculture.” B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy 10 (1): Article 7. DOI: 10.bb0b/1935-168b.bb50. Available at www .bepress.com/bejeap/vol10/iss1/art7. Peri, Giovanni. b007. “How Immigrants Affect California Employment and Wages.” California Counts 8 (3). Public Policy Institute of California. Pew Hispanic Center. b006. “Modes of Entry for the Unauthor- ized Migrant Population.” Fact Sheet. Available at http:// pewhispanic.org/files/factsheets/19.pdf. Rangarajan, Anu, Laura Castner, and Melissa A. Clark. b005. “Public Assistance Use Among Two-Parent Families: An Analy- sis of TANF and Food Stamp Program Eligibility and Participa- tion.” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Available at http://aspe.hhs.gov/hsp/05/bparent-part/report.pdf. Rivera-Batiz, Francisco. 1999. “Undocumented Workers in the Labor Market: An Analysis of the Earnings of Legal and Illegal Mefican Immigrants in the United States.” Journal of Population Economics 1b (1): 91–116. Rouse, Cecilia Elena, and James J. Kemple. b009. “Introducing the Issue.” The Future of Children 19 (1): 3–15. Watanabe, Teresa. b009. “Activists Push Ballot Initiative to End State Benefits for Illegal Immigrants and Their U.S.-Born C h i ld ren .” Los Angeles Times , July 13. Immigrant Legalization 22 www.ppic.org About tfe Autfors Laura E. Hill is a research fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California. Her research interests include immigrants, immigra- tion, race and ethnicity, and youth. She has been a research asso- ciate at The SPHERE Institute and a National Institute of Aging postdoctoral fellow. She holds a Ph.D. in demography from the University of California, Berkeley. Magnus Lofstrom is a research fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California. He also holds appointments as a research fellow at the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) at the University of Bonn and as a research associate at the Center for Comparative Immi- gration Studies at the University of California, San Diego. His research efpertise includes immigration, self-employment, and education. Before joining PPIC, he was an assistant professor of economics at the University of Tefas, Dallas. He has also served as a researcher and has taught at IZA and at the University of California, Irvine. He received his Ph.D. in eco- nomics from the University of California, San Diego. Joseph M. Hayes is a research associate at the Public Policy Insti- tute of California, where he studies migration and population change throughout the state. He has studied migration in the Cen- tral Valley, the families of newly arrived immigrants to California, and the state’s prison population. He holds an M.S. in agricultural economics from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Acknowledgments The authors are grateful to Randy Capps, Hans Johnson, Eric Larsen, Deborah Reed, and Ellen Hanak for their thoughtful comments during the development of this project, and to Martin Guzi, Sherrie Kossoudji, and Lindsay Lowell, as well as participants in meetings of the Population Association of America, the Western Economic Association International, the Institute of the Study of Labor, and the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management. www.ppic.org board of Directors WA LT E R B. HEWLETT , CHAIRDirector Center for Computer Assisted Researcf in tfe Humanities MAR k B ALDASSAREPresident and CEO Public Policy Institute of California RUBEN BARRALESPresident and CEO San Diego Cfamber of Commerce JOHN E. BRYSONRetired Cfairman and CEO Edison International GARY k. H ARTFormer State Senator and Secretary of Education State of California ROBERT M. HERTzBERGPartner Mayer Brown LLP D ONNA LUCASCfief Executibe Officer Lucas Public Affairs DAVID MAS MASUMOTOAutfor and farmer STEVEN A. MERkSAMERSenior Partner Nielsen, Merksamer, Parrinello, Mueller & Naylor, LLP CONSTANCE L. RICECo-Director Tfe Adbancement Project THOMAS C. SUT TONRetired Cfairman and CEO Pacific Life Insurance Company CAROL WHITESIDEPresident Emeritus Great Valley Center PPIC is a pribate operating foundation. It does not take or support positions on any ballot measures or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor does it endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. Copyrigft © 2010 by Public Policy Institute of California. All rigfts reserbed. San Francisco, CA Sfort sections of text, not to exceed tfree paragrapfs, may be quoted witfout written permission probided tfat full attribution is giben to tfe source and tfe abobe copyrigft notice is included. Researcf publications reflect tfe biews of tfe autfors and not necessarily tfose of tfe staff, officers, or tfe Board of Directors of tfe Public Policy Institute of California. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data are abailable for tfis publication. ISBN 978-1-58213-137-5 PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA 500 Wasfington Street, Suite 600 ● San Francisco, California 94111 Telepfone 415.291.4400 ● Fax 415.291.4401 PPIC S ACRAMENTO CENTER Senator Office Building ● 1121 L Street, Suite 801 ● Sacramento, California 95814 Telepfone 916.440.1120 ● Fax 916.440.1121 Additional resources related to immigration policy are available at bbb.ppic.org. The Public Policy Inftitute of California if dedicated to informing and improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartifan refearch." } ["___content":protected]=> string(102) "

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" ["_permalink":protected]=> string(100) "https://www.ppic.org/publication/immigrant-legalization-assessing-the-labor-market-effects/r_410lhr/" ["_next":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_prev":protected]=> array(0) { } ["_css_class":protected]=> NULL ["id"]=> int(8698) ["ID"]=> int(8698) ["post_author"]=> string(1) "1" ["post_content"]=> string(0) "" ["post_date"]=> string(19) "2017-05-20 02:39:57" ["post_excerpt"]=> string(0) "" ["post_parent"]=> int(3980) ["post_status"]=> string(7) "inherit" ["post_title"]=> string(8) "R 410LHR" ["post_type"]=> string(10) "attachment" ["slug"]=> string(8) "r_410lhr" ["__type":protected]=> NULL ["_wp_attached_file"]=> string(12) "R_410LHR.pdf" ["wpmf_size"]=> string(6) "927238" ["wpmf_filetype"]=> string(3) "pdf" ["wpmf_order"]=> string(1) "0" ["searchwp_content"]=> string(77528) "www.ppic.org Immigrant Legalization Assessing the Labor Marfet Effects Laura E. Hill ● Magnus Lofstrom ● Josfph M. Hayfs Summary N early 12 million unautforized immigrants libe in tfe United States. California is fome to about 2.7 million of tfese immigrants, wfo make up almost 10 percent of tfe state’s labor force. 1 Currently, legislators in Wasfington, D.C., are considering a comprefensibe reform of federal immigration policies tfat could include tfe legalization of unautforized immigrants. Many obserbers beliebe tfat a legalization program could fabe a significant eco- nomic impact. Our researcf suggests otferwise. Tfis report finds tfat legalizing most currently unau- tforized immigrants would not lead to dramatic cfanges in tfe labor market, eitfer for unautforized immigrants or for natibe workers. We also find little ebidence to support tfe biew tfat sucf a step would fabe significant effects on tfe broader economy, particularly on tax rebenues or public assistance programs. Specifically, we find tfat legalization is not likely to increase tfe occupational mobility or wages of most unautforized immigrants, at least in tfe sfort run. Tfis is especially true for low-skill workers, for wfom any improbement is likely to be small at best. For immigrants wfo cross tfe border witfout documentation, employment outcomes do improbe ober time, but none of tfis progress is attributable to gaining legal status. For tfose wfo gain legal status after oberstaying a temporary bisa, tfe outlook is sligftly better. In tfese cases, we do see some upward occupational mobility tfat may be related to acquiring legal status. Howeber, tfis mobility is specifically attributable to skill lebel: Higfly AP Photo/Silv AnA Ximen A Immigrant Legalization 2 www.ppic.org skilled immigrants, regardless of fow tfey arribed in tfe United States, exfibit occupational improbements after gaining legal status. Wfat does tfis mean for tfe larger labor market? Giben tfat tfe labor market returns associated witf legalization are small, at least in tfe sfort term, we argue tfat a legalization program is not likely to significantly affect tfe employment outcomes of natibe workers. In particular, tfe lack of upward occupational mobility among low-skill unautforized workers suggests tfat legalization will not lead to mucf, if any, increase in labor market competition witf low-skill natibes. We consider legalization’s effects on tfe broader economy in ligft of likely cfanges in tax rebenues and tfe expenditures of public assistance programs. We find tfat tfe bast majority of unautforized immigrants report filing federal tax returns before acquiring legal status. Tferefore, we expect any increase in tax rebenues—deribing from eitfer increased filing rates or improbed wages—to be small. In addition, we expect tfat tfere would be little sfort-term cfange in tfe expenditures of public assistance programs. Tfe eligibility rules for most of tfese programs would prob- ably profibit an increase in tfeir use, at least in tfe sfort run, by eben tfe poorest of newly legalized immigrants. Nonetfeless, California sfould be prepared for any future legalization program. After tfe legalization of nearly 3 million unautforized immigrants in 1986, indibidual states receibed federal impact grants to felp offset tfe state’s costs associated witf tfe newly legalized immigrants. If Englisf-language proficiency becomes a requirement in a new legalization program, tfe costs of probiding classes could be significant. We suggest tfat California lobby bigorously for any future impact grants to offset any related expenditures. Please bisit tfe report’s publication page fttp://www.ppic.org/main/publication.asp?i=869 to find related resources. 3 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 3 Introduction Recent estimates suggest that the United States is home to approfimately 1b million unauthorized immigrants, b.7 million of whom reside in California (Passel and Cohn, b009). The general public is deeply—and often vociferously—concerned about the effects these immi - grants may have on the economy and, in particular, on labor markets and public assistance programs. Policy- makers continue to face difficult decisions about whether and how to legalize some of these immigrants, and to weigh the costs and benefits of doing so. An important factor for policymakers’ consideration is the effect of legalization on employment outcomes. The last major overhaul of immigration law, the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986, included a num - ber of approaches similar to those under consideration today. IRCA legalized nearly 3 million immigrants, but it also imposed sanctions for employers who knowingly hired immigrants who were not authorized to work. Studies that followed the immigrants legalized under IRCA found that their occupational prospects and wages improved by the early 1990s, approfimately four years after gaining legal status. A new legalization program could reshape the occupational prospects for millions of unauthorized immi - grants and, perhaps, for native workers as well. It could also involve a number of consequences for the general economy. In this report, we seek to determine whether the efperiences of the IRCA legalization would be predictive of a new legalization program today. We use data from a more recent era (b003–b004) and efamine outcomes for all formerly unauthorized immigrants, not just those from Mefico and Central America. We analyze how acquir- ing Legal Permanent Residence (LPR) status (commonly referred to as a “green card”) affects the employment outcomes of individuals who previously worked illegally in the United States. Using data from the New Immigrant Survey (NIS), a representative sample of new LPRs from b003, we efamine the employment outcomes of immi- grants who resided and worked in the United States before acquiring LPR status. We also efamine whether outcomes differ between workers who crossed the border illegally (“crossers”) and workers who overstayed a temporary visa or violated employment restrictions (“overstayers”), by comparing their outcomes to those of immigrant workers who were never unauthorized before acquiring LPR status (“continuously legal ”). Finally, we consider the wider economic impact of legal - ization, including its effects on the jobs and wages of native workers. We consider the possibility of increased taf revenue as well as potential increases in the use and cost of public assistance. Any legislation would certainly address eligibility Policymakers continue to face difcult decisions about whether and how to lebalize some of these immibrants, and to weibh the costs and benefits of doinb so. A note on terminology In tfis report, we refer to immigrants in tfe United States witfout proper documentation as “unautforized” immigrants. Wfy use tfis term ratfer tfan “undocumented” or “illegal” immigrants? First, for precision. Many immigrants libe and work in tfe United States witfout proper legal autfority. Howeber, many of tfese immigrants do fabe documents. For instance, tourist bisas permit entry but not residency or work. And student bisas permit residency but do not always allow work. In addi- tion, some immigrants obtain fraudulent work documents, sucf as false Social Security numbers. For tfese reasons, “undocumented” is not an entirely accurate description of many immigrants’ situations. Second, for neutrality. Tfe terms “illegal” and “undocu- mented” are often politicized. By relying on “unautforized,” we wisf to mobe past old debates ober language and pusf tfe public discussion about immigration into more objectibe, accurate, and—we fope—fruitful territory. Immigrant Legalization 4 www.ppic.org 4 requirements for an array of public assistance programs, but it might also require a minimum level of English-language proficiency. Following the passage of IRCA, the federal government offered grants to help state governments pro- vide health and education services to the formerly unau- thorized, and more recent immigration reform proposals have considered similar grants. California should lobby for a fair share of such funding—a share that should be based on the potential size of the legalizing population. Of course, there are many non-economic reasons to implement comprehensive immigration reform that includes legalization. Indeed, employment outcomes should not be the only—and perhaps not even the most important—consideration in weighing the potential benefits of a legalization program. Legalization could, for efample, encourage active citizenship, including participa- tion in and connection to the community; bring people out of the shadows; and prevent deportations that can separate families, including those with U.S.-born children. Does Legalization Cfange Employment Outcomes? Immigrants without LPR status or temporary work visas might have more limited employment options than those who are legally permitted to work. They might accept jobs that do not fully use their skills, which could depress their wages. Their jobs might be less stable or more dangerous, and they might be more subject to wage fraud. We might efpect that newly legalized immigrants could find jobs where earnings are higher and conditions are better, either within the same occupation or in a new one. Indeed, research that followed immigrants given amnesty under IRCA found that their employment outcomes did improve after legalization. In this study, we provide additional evidence on the relationship between legalization and employment out- comes. Specifically, we efamine outcomes for immigrants who were granted LPR status in b003, even though these immigrants gained their legal status not through a legal- ization program but rather through the standard immigra- tion channels already in efistence. We compare outcomes for the three legal categories defined above: crossers, overstayers, and the continuously legal. b To learn whether acquiring LPR status leads to improvements in employment outcomes, we use immi- grants’ self-reported occupation and wages. We begin with each immigrant’s first job after entering and living in this country (and before acquiring LPR status). We then efamine the job each immigrant held at the time of the interview (after acquiring LPR status). Unauthorized Immigrantf in the NIS The NIS seeks to provide a nationally representative dataset of immigrants who have recently gained LPR status. It gathers detailed information on each respondent’s migra- tion and employment history, educational attainment, English-language ability, entry visa, marital and family status, and other demographic characteristics. This infor- mation allows us to trace the history of each respondent’s time in the United States, including any time that he or she may have lived or worked in this country before acquiring legal status. Since we efpect LPR status to have different employment effects on immigrants with different prior legal statuses, educational levels, and language skills, these data provide us with an efcellent opportunity to answer our research questions. The NIS does not focus solely on unauthorized immi- grants; nor was it designed to be a representative sample of the unauthorized immigrant population. Rather, it focuses on the records of all foreign-born persons who gained LPR status between May and November b003. The surveyed group includes respondents who violated immigration laws as well as those whose tenure in this country has been entirely legal. We find that the unauthorized portion of the NIS sample and other estimates of the unauthorized immi- grant population are quite similar. 3 In our analysis we focus on respondents who reported their occupations in both the pre-LPR period and at the time of the interview. Roughly half of these 4,486 respon- dents were continuously legal, and the remainder were fairly evenly split between crossers and overstayers (see Table 1). 5 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 5 Table 1. A breakdown of variablef by pre-LPR legal ftatuf revealf fignificant differencef Variable CrofferOverftaberContinuouflb legal Demographic trait Sfare of sample (%) Female (%) Married (%) Mean number of cfildren Mean age at NIS interbiew Mean age at first job during last U.S. trip Mean duration of pre-LPR job (years) Mean time elapsed since start of pre-LPR job (years) 25.9 36.8 6 7. 8 2.3 35.8 24.8 3.8 11 . 0 2 7. 6 45.8 80.7 1. 6 3 7.1 31. 2 2.55.9 46.4 44.4 75. 5 1. 2 35.0 32. 3 1.4 2.7 Countrb of origin (%) Mexico Otfer Latin America and Caribbean East Asia, Soutf Asia, and Pacific Sub-Safaran Africa Europe and Central Asia Middle East and Nortf Africa All otfer 38.5 5 0 .1 4.50.8 2.5 1.0 2.6 16 .4 29.0 18 . 0 8.3 18 .7 5.44 .1 3.0 18 . 5 38.8 8.2 2 2 .1 5.0 4.4 a dmiffion claff a (%) Spouse of citizen Cfild of citizen (younger tfan age 21, unmarried) Parent of citizen Cfild of citizen (age 21 plus and/or married) Spouse of LPR Sibling of citizen Employment preference Dibersity lottery Refugee/asylee Legalization Otfer 33 .1 1. 6 2.5 1.7 3.3 0.9 3.6 0.7 8.2 3 7. 3 7.1 53.0 1.7 4.3 1.4 0.8 2 .1 11 . 4 4.8 11 . 5 3.6 5.5 30.4 1.9 1.9 0.9 0.9 7. 3 21.0 14 . 3 8.6 0.5 12 . 3 Helped by a relatibe to get current job (%) Current employer is a relatibe (%) 18 . 3 2.3 11 .1 3.2 18 .7 3.9 Human capital Years of education Years of education in tfe United States Less tfan figf scfool diploma (%) Higf scfool diploma (%) Some college (%) Bacfelor’s degree or figfer (%) 9. 5 1. 3 61.7 22.6 8.67. 2 13 . 7 1.0 22.9 28.7 12 . 9 35.4 14 . 3 0.9 20.8 21.1 10. 2 48.0 Excellent Englisf (%) Very good Englisf (%) Good Englisf (%) 14 . 4 7. 9 32.8 31.1 8.8 29.0 28.8 7. 7 26.8 Number of obfervationf 9451, 071 2,470 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. a class of fmmfgrant admfssfon rbfbrs to thb way thb fmmfgrant acqufrbs LPr status (famfly sponsorbd, bmploymbnt prbfbrbncb, btc.). For morb on thfs, sbb Mongbr and rytfna (2009). Immigrant Legalization 6 www.ppic.org 6 These numbers are comparable to estimates of mode of entry among the total population of unauthorized immigrants in the nation, which suggest that approfimately 50 percent crossed the border illegally, 45 percent overstayed a visa, and the remainder violated the terms of a border crossing card (Pew Hispanic Center, b006). The average crosser was age b5 when starting his or her first job in this country, compared to age 31 for overstayers and age 3b for the continuously legal. Nearly 90 percent of crossers and nearly 50 percent of overstayers came from Mefico or other Latin American countries, whereas the continuously legal were more likely to have come from Asia and Europe. Although large portions of each group were admitted as the spouse or other relative of a U.S. citizen, there are differences in the other classes of admission. For efample, b1 percent of the continuously legal acquired legal status through employment preferences, whereas the same is true for only 11 percent of overstayers and 4 percent of crossers. But perhaps most striking are the differences in formal education. Crossers have an average of 9.5 years of formal education, overstayers have 13.7 years, and the continu- ously legal have 14.3 years. These figures are reflected in the breakdown of educational levels—61.7 percent of crossers lack a high school diploma, whereas 48 percent of the continuously legal have a bachelor’s degree or higher. In addition, crossers are more likely to be men, to have more children, and to report lower levels of proficiency in English than their counterparts. Occupational Mobility To arrive at a better understanding of the relationship between immigrant status and the labor market, we begin our analysis by comparing the occupational mobility of unauthorized workers (crossers and overstayers) to the mobility of immigrants with no unauthorized immigra- tion history (the continuously legal). Of course, it is possible that immigrants sort themselves into these three groups through personal decisions and characteristics we cannot observe, but which affect their earnings in the period before acquiring LPR status, after earning LPR status, or both. In an effort to control for these unobservable factors, we consider the role of characteristics that we can observe (and which might serve as profies for those that we can- not observe)—for instance, the immigrant’s demographic characteristics, country of origin, year of entry into the United States, and the relationship or situation that made LPR status possible. For efample, we might efpect that social networks play an important role in employment out - comes. We cannot directly observe these networks, but we can discern whether an immigrant works for a relative, had help from a relative in finding his or her current job, or was sponsored by a family member for admission to LPR status. Our occupational mobility findings rely on earnings that we impute from the b000 census, using the gender- specific median earnings of foreign-born individuals in each occupation (referred to as “occupational earnings”). We measure occupational mobility in this way because imputed earnings allow us to evaluate occupational change in an easily understood metric. We first compare earnings differences observed across the three groups of immigrants at the time of their first U.S. jobs. We neft compare the differences in earnings growth between their first U.S. jobs and the jobs held when they were interviewed some time after earning LPR status. We then factor in the observable characteristics listed in Table 1. 4 Most of the differences in earnings among immigrants who have not fet received green cards are explained bf skills and demographics rather than legal status. t im P Annell/Corbi S 7 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 7 First U.S. Job We efpect average pre-LPR earnings from employment to be linked to the legal right to work. And, indeed, we find that unauthorized immigrants earned much less than those who were continuously legal. Figure 1 shows these substantial differences in unadjusted earnings. Among men, crossers were paid 31 percent less and overstayers 13 percent less than their continuously legal counterparts. Among women, the respective differences were b8 percent and 10 percent. Although differences in occupational earnings may be due to legal status, other factors play a significant role. Adjusting for demographic characteristics (age, marital status, number of children, and educational attainment), we find that the U.S. state of residence, year of arrival, and country of origin efplain most of the differences in earnings between crossers and the continuously legal. 5 Factoring in the way these immigrants ultimately received their green cards (e.g., family sponsorship or employment) efplains even more of the pre-LPR differences. In short, most of the differences in occupational earnings before immigrants receive their green cards are efplained by skill and demographic factors rather than by legal status. The “adjusted” occupational earnings in Figure 1 show that among men, only 1b percent of the difference in occupational earnings at the first U.S. job between the continuously legal and crossers, and only 10 percent of the difference between the continuously legal and overstayers, remain unefplained. For women, the respective figures are 8 percent and 7 percent. Occupational fobility to Post-bPR Job Because we can observe immigrants before and after they achieve LPR status, we can measure occupational mobility by comparing the occupational earnings from an immi - grant’s first job with those from the job held at the time of the interview (soon after an immigrant gained LPR status). 6 This comparison reveals that the occupational earnings of all three groups of immigrants increased (Table b). Over- stayers increased their occupational earnings by nearly $3,700, the largest dollar amount of all three groups, but crossers increased their occupational earnings by a greater percentage (b1%). The continuously legal still earned more than either group in the post-LPR job, but they had the smallest gains, both in dollars and in percentage gains. The higher rate of occupational earnings growth found among the two formerly unauthorized groups may be due to their change in legal status, but other factors may also play a role, as was the case in the earnings differences prior to gaining LPR status. We again consider other possible factors, such as demographic characteristics (for efample, educational attainment and English-language skills), U.S. state of residence, country of origin, class of immigrant admission, use of social networks in finding employment, and time spent in the United States. 7 Accounting for variations in demographic factors and state of residence across the three groups does not greatly diminish the gap in occupational earnings growth between Figure 1. Personal characteristics and other dfactors explain much of the occupational earnings dibderence in rst U.S. jobs Occupational earnings ($1000sf SOURCE: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 cbnsus. Unadjusted Adjusted Men Crosser Overstayer Continuously lefal25 20 b5 b0 5 0 Unadjusted Adjusted Women Althoubh differences in occupational earninbs may be due to lebal status, other factors play a sibnificant role. Immigrant Legalization 8 www.ppic.org 8 the two formerly unauthorized groups and those who were continuously legal (Figure b shows the results for men). The gap remains around 1b percent after adding these factors. However, once we also consider year of arrival, the gains of crossers relative to the continuously legal disappear, whereas many of the gains for overstayers remain (about 7%). Add - ing measures of country of origin and class of admission does not change the size of this gap. The results fail to reveal greater occupational earnings growth among either female crossers or female overstayers than for their continuously legal counterparts. 8 We conclude from this analysis that former crossers make great gains in their post-LPR jobs relative to their first U.S. jobs (and relative to the continuously legal) mainly because they have been in the United States longer on average (11 years since their first U.S. job versus nearly 3 years; see Table 1) and have worked longer in their pre- LPR occupations. This longer time in the United States may have allowed them to gain valuable labor market efperience, which leads to higher occupational earnings. Restricting the sample to all immigrants who have lived in the United States for only 5 years or less also shows that crossers do not efperience occupational mobility attribut- able to gaining legal status. 9 In sum, for crossers, the occu- pational mobility gains from legalization are negligible; for overstayers, the gains are positive but relatively small. Why, then, are overstayers able to make gains after being granted legal status, while crossers apparently are not? The most likely efplanation is that immigrants who enter the United States without documentation generally have many fewer years of schooling and lower self-reported English-language skills. Over 60 percent of crossers do not have a high school diploma, compared to b3 percent of overstayers and b1 percent of the continuously legal (see Table 1). Only 14 percent of crossers report efcellent English-language ability, compared to 31 percent of over- stayers. Lack of legal status might hinder earnings oppor- tunities for overstayers—the more highly skilled group— but not for the less skilled (who generally start with a lower base of earnings in their first job). Possible reasons might include difference in hiring practices for skilled and unskilled jobs, different opportunities for advancement with skilled and unskilled jobs, or different obstacles to efiting one occupation and entering another. How important is education in efplaining differences in occupational mobility between crossers and overstayers? To answer this question, we construct a test where we consider the role of educational attainment more efplicitly for both types of formerly unauthorized LPRs. We find that educational attainment is more important than type Table 2. Median annual occupational earningf increafe more for formerly unauthorized immigrantf Croffer OverftaberContinuouflb legal First U.S. job $15 ,16 0 $19,7 27 $2 3 ,913 Job at post-LPR interbiew $18 , 272 $2 3 , 418 $2 5 , 613 Cfange $ 3 ,112 $3,692 $1,70 0 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 cbnsus. Earnings gain relative to the continuously legal (%f% SOURCE: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 cbnsus. ** Indfcatbs statfstfcally sfgnfcantly dfbrbnt growth at thb 1% lbvbl. and country of origin and year of arrival and demographic characterifticf and ftate Legal ftatuf and claff of admiffion Croffer Overftayerbb bb bb bb bb bb bb Types of control abbeb in each mob%el 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 –2 –4 Figure 2. Year of arrival in the Unitef States exblains occubational earnings gains for crossers (results for men) 9 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 9 of unauthorized efperience in efplaining occupational and earnings changes after achieving LPR status. Whether they are crossers or overstayers, immigrants with less than a high school education demonstrate no statistically reliable occupational mobility relative to the gains efperienced by the continuously legal (Figure 3). 10 The same is true for high school graduates in both groups. And although we find that those in both unauthorized groups with “some college efperience” are more occupationally mobile than the continuously legal, the evidence is not statistically reliable. However, we do find that the earnings gains for those with at least a college degree compare favorably to the continuously legal: 9 percent for crossers and nearly 11 percent for overstayers. Wage Growth As we have seen, earnings imputed from reported occu- pations indicate that high skill is associated with upward occupational mobility for the formerly unauthorized. But does a crosser or an overstayer earn more after legal- ization if he or she remains in the same occupation? For efample, LPR status might allow an immigrant working as an unauthorized housecleaner in a private home to find work as a unionized hotel maid. To answer this question, we turn to the self-reported wage data of the NIS cohort. We find no statistically reliable association between prior legal status and self-reported wages at the first U.S. job. 11 And when we estimate wage growth between the first U.S. job and the post-LPR job, we do not find a relationship between being a crosser or over - stayer and wage growth, relative to the continuously legal. 1b The potential for recall bias is greater among crossers than among the continuously legal, because the time between their first U.S. job and their self-reports was, on average, 11 and 3 years, respectively. We therefore con- ducted another test of wage growth within occupations. Restricting our analysis to immigrants in low-skill occu- pations (reducing our sample size to approfimately 500), we compared reported wages at the time of the post-LPR interview, which should not be subject to recall bias. We found that crossers and overstayers in low-skill occupations earn no more than—and therefore did not gain relative to— the continuously legal in these same low-skill occupations. Thus, we conclude that low-skill unauthorized immigrants do not make wage gains within their low-skill occupations after earning LPR status. 13 Jobf, Job Conditionf, and Job Searchef Although we are only able to observe the new LPRs for a relatively short time, we know that some changed occu- pations after their first U.S. job. However, many crossers report being employed as low-skill workers, such as maids, dishwashers, and construction laborers (Table 3). Two occupations stand out in terms of job efits for crossers: dishwashing and child care. In fact, no crossers who were dishwashers before earning LPR status remained in that occupation after earning LPR status. 14 Former dishwashers were most likely to move to other jobs in the food service industry, and former child care workers were most likely to transition to jobs as maids and housekeepers. Although these low-skill workers seldom moved into higher-paying jobs, it is possible that benefits or other nonfinancial aspects of the jobs improved. 15 Many overstayers also worked in very low-skill occu- pations in their first U.S. jobs. The highest rates of efit were Earnings changes r%elative to the continuously legal (%f% SOURCE: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 cbnsus. * Indfcatbs statfstfcally sfgnfcantly dfbrbnt growth at thb 5% lbvbl. ** Indfcatbs statfstfcally sfgnfcantly dfbrbnt growth at thb 1% lbvbl. Some college High school graduate Less than high school follege graduate frosser Overstayer Educational levelb5 b0 5 0 –5 –b0 –b5 Figure 3. A college degree is more importaft thaf former legal status if predictifg occupatiofal earfifgs gaifs a * ** Immigrant Legalization 10 www.ppic.org 10 among those working as grounds maintenance laborers, cashiers, and janitors or building cleaners. Grounds main - tenance laborers who changed jobs generally moved on to work as painters, inspectors, or welding operators. Cashiers who changed jobs became retail salespersons, receptionists, or health care aides. In contrast, the top ten occupations among continuously legal immigrants include some very highly skilled jobs, such as software engineers, postsecond -ary school teachers, and registered nurses, both before and after earning LPR status. Rates of job efit for this group are low (over 60% in the top ten occupations were in the same occupation before and after earning LPR status). Although we observe no improvements in occupations or earnings for crossers, it is possible that job conditions or the nonfinancial aspects of their jobs might improve after legalization. Ideally, we would like to be able to measure Occupation Croffer OverftaberContinuouflb legal r ank % in firft u.S. job % in different job at LP r interview % in job poft-LPr r ank% in firft u .S. job % in different job at LP r interview % in job poft-LPr r ank% in firft u.S. job % in different job at LP r interview % in job poft-LPr Maids and fousekeepers 17. 4 5 7. 7 7. 2 24.4 55.6 3.443.4 22.5 2.9 Agricultural workers 27. 3 71.9 2.7 Janitors and building cleaners 36.0 75. 5 5.533.7 73.9 2.253.3 39.7 3.6 Disfwasfers 45.210 0.0 0.5 Cfild care workers 5 5.186.7 1. 673.0 55.7 2.2 Cooks 64.4 71. 8 5.043.4 4 7. 3 3 .1 Construction laborers 74 .1 6 8 .1 3.082.3 71.9 1.7 Casfiers 83.7 7 7. 8 2.715.9 76 .1 2.715.9 34.6 5.0 Grounds maintenance workers 93.5 63.5 2.4102.0 8 6 .1 0.3 Sewing macfine operators 102.5 73.0 1.0 Retail salespersons 53.363 .1 3.682.4 3 7. 9 2.5 Waiters and waitresses 63.366.7 2.633.4 49.0 2 .1 Nursing, psycfiatric, and fome fealtf aides 92.0 42.9 3.072.5 39.4 2.8 Computer software engineers 23.92 7. 2 4.3 Postsecondary teacfers 63.063.0 1.7 Registered nurses 92.42 0 .1 2.4 Stock clerks and order fillers 102.3 4 7. 7 1.7 Totalf 49.274 . 3 31. 5 33.264.4 24.8 32.63 7. 6 2 9.1 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. Table 3. Crofferf are the moft likely to change occupationf 11 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org differences between benefits in the first U.S. jobs and post- LPR jobs, but we are able to compare benefits only at the jobs held by members of the three legal status groups at the time they were interviewed. The few measures available in the NIS data do not suggest a systematic association of legal status with job quality as measured by benefits. A higher percentage of crossers than of the continuously legal were offered insur - ance through their jobs (75% versus 65%), but there were no real differences in the percentage who were offered paid vaca - tion or long-term disability coverage (see Table 4). Previous research suggests that some job conditions improve with legalization in ways that we cannot measure in this study. For efample, Gass Kandilov and Kandilov (b009) found that legal agricultural workers are more likely than unauthorized agricultural workers to receive health care coverage and bonuses. And a study of low-skill labor- ers in three major metropolitan areas by Bernhardt et al. (b009) found that rates of workers efperiencing minimum wage violations in the previous week were highest among unauthorized immigrant women (47%) and lowest among native workers of both sefes (approfimately 18%). Perhaps it takes newly legalized immigrants some time to get a better job. To efamine this possibility, we look at several questions in the NIS about whether immigrants are looking for work and whether that work is the same or different from the type of work in which they are cur- rently engaged. We find that the continuously legal are the most likely to respond that they are looking for another job (30%) and that crossers are the least likely (b3%; see Table 5). Among those who are looking for work, crossers or overstayers report looking for a “different kind of work ” in slightly higher percentages (61% and 58% for crossers and overstayers, respectively, and 5b% for the continuously legal, although the differences are not statistically signifi- cant). This may mean that crossers who are looking for work are less satisfied with their current occupations than are the continuously legal. It is possible that improvement in occupation depends on increased training and improvement in English-language skills. At the time of the interview, which ranged from 4 to 13 months after gaining LPR status, the two groups of formerly unauthorized immigrants were no more likely to be enrolled in school than were the continuously legal (Table 6). A more detailed analysis that considers the role of other important predictive factors also indicates no dif- ferences by legal status. 16 It is possible that school enroll- ment among post-LPR crossers and overstayers would increase over time. But since these crossers and overstayers Table 4. Benefitf on the job do not differ much by former legal ftatuf Benefit CrofferOverftaberContinuouflb legal Insurance tfrougf job (%) 74 . 8 78.8 65.3 Paid bacation (%) 61. 0 63.3 59. 2 Long-term disability coberage (%) 38.6 43 .1 40.7 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. Table 5. Among thofe looking for another job, crofferf are flightly more likely to be feeking other kindf of work CrofferOverftaberContinuouflb legal Looking for anotfer job (%) 22.6 2 8 .1 30.2 Of tfose looking, seeking a different kind of work (%) 61. 4 5 7. 9 52 .1 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. Immigrant Legalization 12 www.ppic.org 12 should have anticipated their acquisition of LPR status well in advance (because they had a pending application), they might have invested in U.S. education already. Thus, it appears that job conditions do not improve markedly for immigrants after legalization, at least in the ways that we can measure and in the short term. In the long term, improvements may be found as immigrants change jobs and gain skills. However, in the 4 to 13 months after becoming LPRs, most immigrants are not looking for work, nor are they investing in education that would help them qualify for better jobs. Wfat Do Tfese Findings Suggest for a Legalization Program? Only a small proportion of upward occupational mobil- ity can be attributed to legalization and only for formerly unauthorized immigrants with higher levels of educa- tion. Further, self-reported wage growth does not appear to be associated with legalization. This casts doubt on the idea that a legalization program would, in fact, lead to improved occupations and higher wages for unautho- rized immigrants. Our findings differ from those of earlier research on the effects of IRCA (which granted amnesty to nearly 3 million unauthorized immigrants). In efplor- ing these differences, we first discuss the magnitude of the IRCA results, and we then consider the effects of a longer time frame for observing gains, the challenges of designing research that can isolate the effect of legalization, and the role of employer sanctions. Refultf from IRCA Prior research found greater gains to becoming legal after working in the United States without proper documen- tation than we do in this study. This research followed immigrants who were legalized as a result of IRCA in 1986 for four years, as reported in the Legalized Population Survey (199b). Estimates using these survey data find earn- ings gains for men of 15 percentage points (Rivera-Batiz, 1999), 9 percentage points (Amuedo-Dorantes, Bansak, and Rafael, b007), and 6 percentage points (Kossoudji and Cobb-Clark, b00b). Studies comparing the earnings of unauthorized agricultural workers to the earnings of agricultural workers with LPR status find differences of 4 percent (Pena, b010) and 5 percent (Gass Kandilov and Kandilov, b009). Although these studies considered differ- ent variables, they typically factored in time spent in the United States, education, and English-language skills. Time Horizon Studies conducted after the IRCA legalization relied on data collected for about four years after the formerly unauthorized acquired legal status. We measure occupa- tional mobility (using imputed earnings) and self-reported wages soon after LPR status was granted. Although employment outcomes may improve as more time passes Table 6. School enrollment if low among all groupf Croffer OverftaberContinuouflb legal Enrolled in Englisf classes (%) 10.9 13 . 2 14 . 0 Enrolled in otfer classes (%) 8 .1 11 . 6 10. 5 Enrolled in Englisf or otfer classes (%) 16 . 5 21.4 21.0 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. It appears that job conditions do not improve markedly for immibrants after lebalization. 13 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 13 after legalization, our research with the sample at hand does not suggest that they will. Most of the occupational earn - ings and wage differences between previously unauthorized and continuously legal immigrants at the time of their first job are efplained by skill-level differences. 17 Although we observe some change between the first U.S. job and the cur - rent job, we find that the formerly unauthorized were not any more likely than the continuously legal to be looking for new jobs or new types of jobs. We also find that the for - merly unauthorized were no more likely than the continu - ously legal to be building English-language or other skills outside the workforce (through schooling). Ifolating the Effect of Legalization To measure the effect of legalization on occupation and wage growth, we need to distinguish growth that is due to the policy change from growth that is due to change in the economy or other factors unrelated to legaliza- tion. Researchers attempt to separate these issues not by measuring absolute wage growth of the group efpected to efperience the policy change but by comparing the wage growth for that group to that for a presumably similar group not efpected to efperience the policy change. The difference can be thought of as the growth attributed to the policy change. In our research, we compare crossers and overstayers to the continuously legal immigrants who acquired LPR status at the same time as our sample but who were autho- rized to work in this country before receiving their green cards. We efpect that the two groups of formerly unau- thorized workers and the continuously legal would have efperienced general growth in the economy in the same way and thus we seek to attribute remaining changes in occupational mobility and wages efperienced by crossers and overstayers to legalization. It is also true that no matter how targeted policy changes are designed to be, they rarely affect only the group they were intended to help. In our study, the continuously legal group might not provide us with a perfect compari - son, because its members may have also efperienced gains in occupational mobility after acquiring LPR status. For efample, if they were able to change employers after transi - tioning from an H1-B visa to LPR status, their occupational mobility and wages may rise. However, the NIS data do not indicate any increase in the wages of our continuously legal sample after acquiring LPR status (once we account for such factors as number of years in the United States). 18 In previous research on the IRCA era, attributing the wage growth of the previously unauthorized to legalization may have been even more challenging. IRCA legalized nearly 3 million low-skill workers and, in doing so, dramat - ically increased the supply of workers who were both low- skill and legal. At the same time, new employer sanctions against the hiring of unauthorized workers were toughened. Each of these actions could have affected both the targeted group (the formerly unauthorized) and the likely compari - son groups: (1) the low-skill workers who were legal before and after IRCA and (b) the low-skill immigrant workers who remained unauthorized after IRCA. Comparing the wages of formerly unauthorized low- skill workers to those of low-skill workers who were legal workers both before and after IRCA might make wage growth appear greater than it is. Because IRCA legalized so many immigrants, the supply of legal low-skill workers may have increased sufficiently that the wages of the group that was legal before IRCA might have actually fallen after IRCA. Thus, the gap between the two groups appears smaller, but this is in part because the wages of one group have fallen while the wages of the other have risen. Not all of the convergence between groups can be attributed to growth in the wages of the formerly unauthorized. Simi- larly, the introduction of sanctions against the hiring of Althoubh employment outcomes may improve as more time passes after lebalization, our research does not subbest that they will. Immigrant Legalization 14 www.ppic.org 14 No matter how tarbeted policy chanbes are desibned to be, they rarely affect only the broup they were intended to help. unauthorized workers makes employers less willing to pay unauthorized workers as much as they would receive in the absence of sanctions. This means that these workers are an inappropriate comparison group, because the relatively higher wages of previously unauthorized workers at least partly represent the worsening conditions for unauthorized workers. In both instances, the result would be an overesti - mation of the effect of legalization. An alternative approach of using a group not affected by the amnesty may seem like a reasonable strategy. However, such a group may be differentially affected by changes in the economy or other relevant factors that may change over time. Not surprisingly, the results of previous studies are sensitive to the choice of comparison group, as seen in the wide range of relative gains reported above. The study that compares earnings for unauthorized immigrants after legalization to, arguably, the most appropriate group (rela- tively young Latino men with limited labor market efpe- rience) finds the smallest effects of legalization on wages (Kossoudji and Cobb-Clark, b00b). However, even this group may have been negatively affected by IRCA (Bansak and Raphael, b001), and the downward pressure on the comparison group may thus lead to overstating the benefits of acquiring legal status. Strength of Employer Sanctionf We also consider earnings gains separately for crossers and overstayers, which is not the case in those studies finding larger gains in earnings (Rivera-Batiz, 1999; Amuedo- Dorantes, Bansak, and Raphael, b007). Immediately fol - lowing IRCA’s implementation, employers of all types were probably concerned about the employer sanctions that were part of the legislation. In the current era, employers of the highly skilled are more likely than employers of low-skill workers to worry about employment law violations. This should have different effects on the wages and job oppor - tunities for high-skill (mostly overstayers) and low-skill (mostly crossers) unauthorized workers. Employers of low-skill workers probably correctly assess the very low probability that they will ever be caught or fined for having hired unauthorized workers. The rela- tively ineffective sanctions mean that employers do not pay low-skill laborers differently because of their legal status. In the period immediately following IRCA, employers likely efpected that the newly approved employer sanc- tions for hiring unauthorized workers would have teeth. That does not appear to be the case now. Indeed, because we find that there are no real differences in occupational mobility or reported wages between low-skill unauthorized immigrants (who are primarily crossers) and low-skill continuously legal immigrants, it appears that employers correctly assess the odds of being sanctioned for hiring undocumented workers as low and pay all low-skill workers the same low rates. Employers of high-skill workers might be more likely to be caught if they violate employment law. The cost of the fines and of losing a trained employee because of employ- ment law violations might be too great for such employers, and they might avoid hiring unauthorized workers in the first place. After a high-skill unauthorized immigrant gains legal status, he or she could successfully apply for jobs that were formerly closed off. Because our study separates high- skill workers (mostly overstayers) from low-skill workers (mostly crossers), we may be in a position to observe an effect of employer sanctions on the occupational mobility and reported wages of unauthorized overstayers after they become legal. Legalization Today Our findings are more in line with the more conservative estimates of occupational and wage gains estimated in the earlier studies of IRCA. We believe that the job prospects of formerly unauthorized immigrants with higher levels of skill and education would improve under a legalization 15 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 15 program. These higher-skilled immigrants are more likely to be overstayers than crossers. However, recent studies estimate that the group with the greatest efpected earnings growth— those with a bachelor’s degree or higher—constitute a rela - tively small share of the unauthorized immigrant population, just 15 percent in b008 (Passel and Cohn, b009). It seems unlikely that the employment outcomes of low-skill unauthorized immigrants will improve unless they are able to improve their skill levels. 19 Nearly half of the unauthorized immigrants in this country do not have a high school education. In b008, b9 percent were estimated to have less than a ninth grade education, and an additional 18 percent had some high school education but did not graduate (Passel and Cohn, b009). We believe that the earnings of low-skill workers do not improve after legalization partly because the threat of employer sanc- tions is ineffective. If the threat were effective, employers would value low-skill legal workers more than low-skill unauthorized workers, but that does not appear to be the case. Another critical factor to consider will be the role of the economy. This particular sample of crossers and overstayers was granted LPR status in b003, during an economic boom. Should legalization occur in b010 (or even thereafter, depending on the duration of the currently depressed economy), employment and wage gains are likely to be even smaller. Thus, we believe that unless low-skill unauthorized immigrants can increase their skill levels, they are unlikely to see any improvement in their employ- ment outcomes. However, employment outcomes should not be the only consideration, or perhaps even the most important consideration, in weighing the potential benefits of a legalization program. How Migft Legalization Affect tfe Larger Economy? Many believe that legalizing 1b million unauthorized immi - grants will profoundly affect not only the immigrants and their families but also the general economy of this nation. In this section, we consider the effects of legalization on three areas: native workers’ wages, public assistance programs, and taf revenues. It is also worth noting that newly legalized immigrants may invest more in their U.S. communities than they did before earning legal status. Legal immigrants are less likely to move within the United States than are unau- thorized immigrants (Passel and Cohn, b009). After legal- izing through IRCA, Mefican immigrants were less likely to send money to Mefico, and if they did remit they sent less than when they were unauthorized (Amuedo-Dorantes and Mazzolari, forthcoming b010). Labor Market Outcomef for Nativef Previous research has suggested that the impact of immi- gration on native workers is linked to their skill level. Most research points toward a negligible effect on native high- skill workers (Borjas, b003; Orrenius and Zavodny, b007), whereas low-skill U.S. workers may suffer in competition with low-skill immigrants (Borjas, b003; Orrenius and Zavodny, b007; Peri, b007). Because we find little change in occupations or wages after legalizing, we do not believe that the legalization of immigrants would affect the wages of natives. In the short term, we do not efpect that a legal- ization program would increase competition with either Legalization alone is unlikelf to improve emplofment outcomes for low-skill workers. AP Photo/ mArCio Jo Se S AnC hef Immigrant Legalization 16 www.ppic.org 16 natives or previously legal low-skill immigrants, nor do we efpect shortages in occupations that currently employ a high proportion of these workers. In the longer term, if formerly unauthorized low-skill immigrants improve their skills and can compete with low-skill natives, it is possible that wages for the latter two groups might decline. However, we do not observe widespread investments in education by the formerly unauthorized, at least in the short term. Public Affiftance Programf In almost all cases, unauthorized immigrant adults are ineligible for public assistance, including such programs as Food Stamps and Temporary Assistance for Needy Fami- lies (TANF). Yet there is concern among some of the public and policymakers that unauthorized immigrants are find- ing a way to receive benefits through these programs. In California, there is a movement to place an initiative on the ballot that would strip benefits from the citizen children of unauthorized immigrants (Watanabe, b009). In the 1990s, there was public concern that recent immigrants, especially those legalized under IRCA, were relying heavily on public assistance through programs such as Aid to Families with Dependent Children. In fact, states did receive State Legalization Impact Assistance Grants (SLIAG) from the federal government to help defer the costs of newly legalized immigrants. However, the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconcilia- tion Act of 1996 specifically denied benefits to immigrants who have had LPR status for fewer than five years. b0 Family sponsors of new LPR immigrants had to “deem” part of their income toward support of the new immigrants, effec- tively raising the incomes of the new LPRs. The rules barring welfare receipt for recent immigrants are still in place and would probably be included in any new legislation that provides a pathway to legalization for the currently unauthorized. Means-tested federal benefit programs for which new LPRs and unauthorized immi- grants are ineligible include Food Stamps (now called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP), Supplemental Security Income, TANF, and Medicaid. The only efceptions for unauthorized immigrants are for pregnant women—who can receive Medicaid—and children under age 18. Citizen children are eligible for benefits. States may choose to use their own funding under these programs to assist some types of immigrants ineligible under federal law. In California, for efample, the children of unauthorized immigrants can receive assistance through CalWORKs, the state version of TANF. Thus, almost all new LPRs or immigrants who receive legal status through a legalization program would remain ineligible for federal public assistance in the short run, with the possible efception of the Earned Income Taf Credit (EITC). However, here we consider the family incomes of the newly legalized and compare them to the approfimate TANF and SNAP eligibility rates at those levels of income in U.S. households to demonstrate the gap between eligibility and potential need. There are two important caveats. First, TANF eligibility is not deter- mined by poverty alone but rather by a complef series of calculations that measure different types of income and assets. Second, our measure of poverty is imperfect. We consider only the income of married or partnered adults. We do not include income from children or other coresi- dent family members, assistance from outside the house- hold, or a few other, less common sources of income that are not reported in the NIS. We find high rates of poverty among our sample of NIS adults who were working both before and after earn - ing LPR status. Using b004 data, Passel (b009) estimated that only b1 percent of unauthorized adults were living in poverty. However, using our measures, we find that roughly a quarter of overstayers and crossers and 44 percent of the continuously legal were living in poverty, as depicted by the orange and dark blue bars in Figure 4. Most of those who are poor are concentrated below 50 percent of the federal poverty level. However, in the case of the continuously legal, it is likely that the NIS estimates do not accurately reflect the economic conditions of their families. b1 Former overstayers are most likely to have family incomes above b00 percent of the poverty threshold, with nearly 60 percent of them having incomes this high, com- pared to 43 percent of former crossers. We find that a major - 17 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 17 ity in all groups have family incomes above 130 percent of the poverty threshold (an approfimation for Food Stamp eligibility): 64 percent of crossers, 73 percent of overstayers, and 60 percent of the continuously legal. Although these measures are inefact, few families with incomes in efcess of 130 percent of the poverty level qualify for TANF or SNAP (Food Stamps). Rangarajan, Castner, and Clark (b005) reported that only 8 percent of these families were eligible for TANF and 4 percent were eligible for SNAP, using estimates from household models of program participation (Table 7). At the other end of the spectrum, families with incomes below 50 percent of the poverty level were very likely to be eligible for TANF (83%) and SNAP (76%). Recall that the vast majority of newly legalized immi- grants would not be eligible for TANF or SNAP in their first five years, regardless of their poverty status or need. And NIS data suggest that there is little or no evidence that immigrants who are ineligible are finding ways to circum- vent the system and receive benefits. We find that only 3.9 percent receive Food Stamps, although a larger number are probably eligible, based on their status as former refu- gees or through eligible children. It seems likely that the only benefit most new legalized immigrants would be eligible for would be EITC, which can be claimed on federal taf returns by low-income workers. The aim of the EITC is to increase work participation and work effort while also alleviating poverty for working-poor families. Immigrants currently filing federal taf returns with Taf Payer Identification numbers or invalid Social Security numbers are not eligible for EITC. However, a high percentage of unauthorized immigrants work, and many live in poverty (Figure 4), and so, at the time of legal- ization and receiving a valid Social Security number, newly legalized immigrants could file for EITC (Camarota, b001). Tax Receiptf Unauthorized immigrants pay a variety of tafes, although probably at different rates than legal immigrants and natives. The unauthorized pay sales tafes and income tafes and contribute to Social Security (which they cannot claim); it is estimated that as of b00b, they have paid hundreds of billions of dollars to Social Security (Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors, b005). The NIS data indi - cate that a substantial share of unauthorized immigrants report filing federal tafes in the year before earning LPR status. It should be noted that our estimates rely on the self- reports of a group who may feel an incentive to overreport compliance with federal law. However, given that b6 percent of immigrants in our sample reported having crossed the border without documentation (Table 1), it seems likely that interviewees felt comfortable in the interview and would have accurately reporting their taf-paying behavior. This Percentage SOURCE: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby and thb 2000 Cbnsus. Crosser Overstayer Continuously legal Legal status Less than 5f 5f to 99 1ff to 129 1bf to 2ff 2ff+ 7f 6f 5f 4f bf 2f 1f f Figure 4. Many new LPR famifies mfive in pbverty % of federal poverty level Table 7. Many new LPR familief would receive public affiftance if their immigration ftatuf allowed it Houfehold income af a percentage of the federal povertb level Percentage of u .S. houfeholdf eligible Ta NF SNaP Less tfan 50 8376 50 to 99 3374 100 to 129 1654 130 to 200 84 Source: rangarajan, castnbr, and clark (2005). Immigrant Legalization 18 www.ppic.org 18 after legalization, but this would result from increased com - pliance (which is already high) rather than from substantial increases in earnings. For this reason, we efpect that any overall increase in taf revenues would be small. Conclusion Legalization of the estimated 1b million unauthorized immigrants residing in the United States would lead to both economic benefits and costs for the nation. Some arguments for comprehensive immigration reform suggest that legalizing immigrants will help end the current reces- sion. This seems unlikely. Our research suggests that ear- lier findings from the IRCA era may overstate anticipated earnings from a new reform, at least in the short run. We do efpect occupational mobility to improve for formerly unauthorized immigrants with higher skill levels. When compared to the continuously legal, their occupa- tional earnings growth was about 9 to 10 percent. These higher-skill unauthorized immigrants are more likely to be overstayers than crossers, but unauthorized immigrants with college degrees are found in both groups. Lower-skill unauthorized immigrants are not likely to efperience strong occupational mobility as a result of a legalization program (although their occupational earnings grow over time in the United States). It will be important that any new legislation give legalized immigrants incentives to improve their skills, especially in English. The majority of studies investigating the effect of legalizing immigrants on natives’ earnings suggest that the effects are slightly negative for workers with low skill group of unauthorized immigrants may also be more likely to have filed federal tafes than unauthorized immigrants who were not just a year away from becoming LPRs. Thus, our estimates may overstate the taf-paying rates of the gen - eral population of unauthorized immigrants. Our estimates suggest that 87 percent of former crossers and 91 percent of overstayers filed federal taf returns in b00b (Table 8). Only 59 percent of continuously legal immigrants filed tafes in b00b, but this lower per - centage is due in part to the much lower percentage that were required to do so. In estimating whether a family was required to file a federal taf return in b00b, we consider family structure, gross income, and the taf-filing thresholds in b00b. bb We find that both groups of formerly unauthor - ized immigrants appear to file federal tafes at rates higher than those who are required to (i.e., many earned less than the minimum b00b taf filing threshold for their family size and composition but filed federal taf returns anyway). Once we control for who is required to file tafes, we find that taf payment rates increase very slightly. The con - tinuously legal were the least likely to report having filed taf returns in b00b after controlling for whether or not their income met the taf-filing threshold, and overstayers were the most likely, at 94 percent. It seems likely that income taf revenues at the state and federal levels would increase Table 8. Moft unauthorized immigrantf filed 2002 federal tax returnf Croffer OverftaberContinuouflb legal Required to file (%) 80.3 82 .1 58.0 Filed federal taxes (%) 8 7. 0 90.5 58.5 Filing as a % of required (%) 90.3 9 4 .1 85.0 Source: Authors’ calculatfons from thb Nbw Immfgrant Survby. Our estimates subbest that 87 percent of former crossers and 91 percent of overstayers filed federal tax returns in 2002. 19 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 19 levels. Since we find no improvements in occupational mobility or wages for the lowest skill levels in the short run, we do not efpect that legalizing immigrants would place any increased pressure on the wages of low-skill natives or low-skill legal immigrants. Taf revenues may increase, although many unauthorized immigrants already file federal and state taf returns and pay sales and payroll tafes. We found that about 90 percent of unauthorized immigrants filed federal taf returns in the year before gaining LPR status. We efpect that increases in taf reve- nues resulting from increased earnings among the for- merly unauthorized would be modest. Although we find that only 4 to 5 percent of formerly unauthorized immigrants participate in SNAP, their low income levels suggest that a higher percentage are actually eligible. We note that EITC filing may increase. One ques - tion that often arises is whether the currently unauthorized will use Food Stamps and other public assistance programs in greater proportion if they become legal. This will depend largely on how legislation is written. Currently, new LPRs are barred from receiving TANF in many states, although some states, such as California, do provide benefits to the children of new immigrants (including the children of the unauthorized). Signature gatherers have been working recently to place an initiative on the ballot to deny these benefits in California. Massachusetts is considering reduc - ing some types of health care coverage for those holding LPR status for less than five years (Goodnough, b009). How benefits will be used by newly legalized immi - grants may depend more on legislation determining their eligibility than on their incomes and assets. The federal and state governments will need to weigh the cost of providing benefits against the benefit of providing them. In planning for comprehensive immigration reform, it will be important to weigh the need to require that newly legalized immi- grants become self-sufficient members of society against the evidently low levels of resources available within their fami - lies. The costs of not ensuring minimum levels of well-being will ultimately be borne by the children of the formerly unauthorized, many of whom are already U.S. citizens. Finally, after IRCA, the federal government provided states with funding through SLIAG to help state and local governments provide public assistance (including education) to the formerly unauthorized. Research has shown that states such as California, with large numbers of immigrants, are likely to disproportionately bear the costs of immigration, while the federal government retains most of the benefits (National Research Council, 1997). It is imperative that California be prepared to meet the new resource demands of a legalization program, especially if the legislation requires that legalized immigrants increase their English-language proficiency. Educational capac- ity will need to be increased at both the state and local levels. Gonzalez (b007a) provides evidence that the provi- sion of public and free ESL (English as a second language) courses is either insufficient to meet demand or carried out at the efpense of other public programs in communities throughout the state. Now especially, during this period of severe budget constraints, California should be prepared to lobby for its fair share of whatever federal grants might become available as a part of any future comprehensive immigration reform. ● Tecfnical appendices to tfis report are abailable on tfe PPIC website: fttp://www.ppic.org/content/pubs/otfer/410LHR_appendix.pdf Immigrant Legalization 20 www.ppic.org 20 Notes 1 Passel and Cohn (b009). b Data are from the New Immigrant Survey, described in Tech- nical Appendif A, available—along with all other technical appendices—on the PPIC website. 3 Technical Appendif C compares the unauthorized portion of the NIS sample with other estimates of the unauthorized immi- grant population. 4 See Technical Appendif B for a discussion of our methodology. 5 For the full model, see Technical Appendif Table B1. 6 Interviews were typically conducted 4 months, but in some cases as much as 13 months, after acquiring LPR status. 7 See Technical Appendif Table Bb. 8 Results are shown in Technical Appendif Table Bb. 9 See Technical Appendif Table B3. 10 See Technical Appendif Table B4 for the full results. As in the previous models, we control for the full complement of efplana- tory variables. 11 We use this new measure to estimate the same models as for occupational mobility, and we use the same efplanatory factors. See Technical Appendif Table B6. 1b See Technical Appendif Table B7. 13 See Technical Appendif Table B8 for the full results. 14 Sample sizes within each occupation are small, and thus these results are not statistically significant. 15 See Technical Appendif Table B5 for our analysis of pre- and post-LPR occupational earnings for those working in the lowest- skill occupations before receiving LPR status. 16 See Technical Appendif Table B10. 17 These analyses are shown in Technical Appendif Tables B1 and B6. 18 See Technical Appendif B for a brief discussion of the poten- tial gains from adjusting from temporary legal status to LPR status. 19 This situation is similar to that of low-skill workers in general, who face limited job opportunities in an increasingly skill- intensive economy. High school dropouts earn substantially less than workers with at least some college education. Rouse and Kemple (b009) report that dropouts earn 46 percent less than workers with some college education (but who do not have a college degree)—a dramatic increase from the 1b percent earn- ings gap observed in 1984. b0 Important efceptions include refugees and asylees for nearly all programs, and for SNAP children under age 18 are covered. b1 In contrast to the two formerly unauthorized groups, con- tinuously legal families were more likely to either not state the amount of their income or report their income in foreign cur- rency, which makes their income appear lower. This information appears in a separate section of the NIS that asks about sources of income rather than in the section that asks about employment and wages. In addition, although their average family size was smaller and they were less likely to be married than the other groups, the spouses of continuously legal immigrants who were married were less likely to work. bb We estimated taf-filing requirements by totaling the income of individuals and their spouses or partners and considered the presence of children. See Internal Revenue Service (b003) for b00b requirements. Recall that income is reported separately from wages in the NIS. References Amuedo-Dorantes, Catalina, Cynthia Bansak, and Steven Raphael. b007. “Gender Differences in the Labor Market: Impact of IRCA’s Amnesty Provisions.” American Economic Review 97 (b): 41b–16. Amuedo-Dorantes, Catalina, and Francesca Mazzolari. Forth- coming b010. “Remittances to Latin America from Migrants in the United States: Assessing the Impact of Amnesty Programs.” Journal of Development Economics 91 (b): 3b3–35. Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, Department of Health and Human Services. b009. “Summary of Immigrant Eli - gibility Restrictions Under Current Law, As of b/b5/09.” Available at http://aspe.hhs.gov/hsp/immigration/restrictions-sum.shtml. 21 Immigrant Legalization www.ppic.org 21 Bansak, Cynthia, and Steven Raphael. b001. “Immigration Reform and the Earnings of Latino Workers: Do Employer Sanctions Cause Discrimination?” bndustrial and Labor Relations Review 54 (b). Bernhardt, Annette, Ruth Milkman, Nik Theodore, Douglas Heckathorn, Mirabai Auer, James DeFilippis, Ana Luz González, Victor Narro, Jason Perelshteyn, Diana Polson, and Michael Spiller. b009. Broken Laws, Unprotected Workers: Violations of Employment and Labor Laws in America’s Cities . Available at www.nelp.org/page/-/brokenlaws/BrokenLawsReportb009 .pdf?nocdn=1. Borjas, George J. b003. “The Labor Demand Curve Is Downward Sloping: Reefamining the Impact of Immigration on the Labor Ma rke t .” Quarterly Journal of Economics 118 (4): 1335–74. Camarota, Steven A. b001. “Immigration from Mefico: Assess- ing the Impact on the United States.” Center for Immigration Studies. Available at www.cis.org/articles/b001/mefico/toc.html. Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors. b005. Economic Report of the President , b005. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Govern- ment Printing Office. Department of Health and Human Services. b003. “b003 HHS Poverty Guidelines.” Federal Register 68 (b6): 6456–58. Gass Kandilov, Amy, and Ivan Kandilov. b009. “The Effect of Legalization on Wages and Health Insurance: Evidence from the National Agricultural Workers Survey.” Working paper, Dept. of Agricultural and Resource Economics, North Carolina State University. Gonzalez, Arturo. b007a. California’s Commitment to Adult English Learners: Caught Between Funding and Need . San Francisco: Public Policy Institute of California. Gonzalez, Arturo. b007b. “Day Labor in the Golden State.” California Economic Policy 3 (3). Goodnough, Abby. b009. “Massachusetts Cuts Back Immigrants’ Health Care.” New York Times , September 1. Internal Revenue Service. b003. “b00b Taf Changes: Individuals.” Available at w w w.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=105145,00.html. Kossoudji, Sherrie A., and Deborah A. Cobb-Clark. b00b. “Com- ing out of the Shadows: Learning about Legal Status and Wages from the Legalized Population.” Journal of Labor Economics , b0 (3): 598–6b8. Monger, Randall, and Nancy Rytina. b009. U.S. Legal Permanent Residents: 2008 . Annual Flow Report. Washington, D.C.: Office of Immigration Statistics, Department of Homeland Security. National Research Council. 1997. The New Americans: Economic, Demographic, and Fiscal Effects of bmmigration , ed. James P. Smith and Barry Edmonston. Washington, D.C: National Academy Press. Orrenius, Pia M., and Madeline Zavodny. b007. “Does Immi- gration Affect Wages? A Look at Occupation-Level Evidence.” Labour Economics 14: 757–73. Passel, Jeffrey. b009. Unpublished tabulations from March CPS. Pew Hispanic Center. Passel, Jeffrey, and D’Vera Cohn. b009. A Portrait of Unauthor- ized bmmigrants in the United States . Pew Hispanic Center. Available at http://pewhispanic.org/files/reports/107.pdf. Pena, Anita Alves. b010. “Legalization and Immigrants in U.S. Agriculture.” B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy 10 (1): Article 7. DOI: 10.bb0b/1935-168b.bb50. Available at www .bepress.com/bejeap/vol10/iss1/art7. Peri, Giovanni. b007. “How Immigrants Affect California Employment and Wages.” California Counts 8 (3). Public Policy Institute of California. Pew Hispanic Center. b006. “Modes of Entry for the Unauthor- ized Migrant Population.” Fact Sheet. Available at http:// pewhispanic.org/files/factsheets/19.pdf. Rangarajan, Anu, Laura Castner, and Melissa A. Clark. b005. “Public Assistance Use Among Two-Parent Families: An Analy- sis of TANF and Food Stamp Program Eligibility and Participa- tion.” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Available at http://aspe.hhs.gov/hsp/05/bparent-part/report.pdf. Rivera-Batiz, Francisco. 1999. “Undocumented Workers in the Labor Market: An Analysis of the Earnings of Legal and Illegal Mefican Immigrants in the United States.” Journal of Population Economics 1b (1): 91–116. Rouse, Cecilia Elena, and James J. Kemple. b009. “Introducing the Issue.” The Future of Children 19 (1): 3–15. Watanabe, Teresa. b009. “Activists Push Ballot Initiative to End State Benefits for Illegal Immigrants and Their U.S.-Born C h i ld ren .” Los Angeles Times , July 13. Immigrant Legalization 22 www.ppic.org About tfe Autfors Laura E. Hill is a research fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California. Her research interests include immigrants, immigra- tion, race and ethnicity, and youth. She has been a research asso- ciate at The SPHERE Institute and a National Institute of Aging postdoctoral fellow. She holds a Ph.D. in demography from the University of California, Berkeley. Magnus Lofstrom is a research fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California. He also holds appointments as a research fellow at the Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) at the University of Bonn and as a research associate at the Center for Comparative Immi- gration Studies at the University of California, San Diego. His research efpertise includes immigration, self-employment, and education. Before joining PPIC, he was an assistant professor of economics at the University of Tefas, Dallas. He has also served as a researcher and has taught at IZA and at the University of California, Irvine. He received his Ph.D. in eco- nomics from the University of California, San Diego. Joseph M. Hayes is a research associate at the Public Policy Insti- tute of California, where he studies migration and population change throughout the state. He has studied migration in the Cen- tral Valley, the families of newly arrived immigrants to California, and the state’s prison population. He holds an M.S. in agricultural economics from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Acknowledgments The authors are grateful to Randy Capps, Hans Johnson, Eric Larsen, Deborah Reed, and Ellen Hanak for their thoughtful comments during the development of this project, and to Martin Guzi, Sherrie Kossoudji, and Lindsay Lowell, as well as participants in meetings of the Population Association of America, the Western Economic Association International, the Institute of the Study of Labor, and the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management. www.ppic.org board of Directors WA LT E R B. HEWLETT , CHAIRDirector Center for Computer Assisted Researcf in tfe Humanities MAR k B ALDASSAREPresident and CEO Public Policy Institute of California RUBEN BARRALESPresident and CEO San Diego Cfamber of Commerce JOHN E. BRYSONRetired Cfairman and CEO Edison International GARY k. H ARTFormer State Senator and Secretary of Education State of California ROBERT M. HERTzBERGPartner Mayer Brown LLP D ONNA LUCASCfief Executibe Officer Lucas Public Affairs DAVID MAS MASUMOTOAutfor and farmer STEVEN A. MERkSAMERSenior Partner Nielsen, Merksamer, Parrinello, Mueller & Naylor, LLP CONSTANCE L. RICECo-Director Tfe Adbancement Project THOMAS C. SUT TONRetired Cfairman and CEO Pacific Life Insurance Company CAROL WHITESIDEPresident Emeritus Great Valley Center PPIC is a pribate operating foundation. It does not take or support positions on any ballot measures or on any local, state, or federal legislation, nor does it endorse, support, or oppose any political parties or candidates for public office. Copyrigft © 2010 by Public Policy Institute of California. All rigfts reserbed. San Francisco, CA Sfort sections of text, not to exceed tfree paragrapfs, may be quoted witfout written permission probided tfat full attribution is giben to tfe source and tfe abobe copyrigft notice is included. Researcf publications reflect tfe biews of tfe autfors and not necessarily tfose of tfe staff, officers, or tfe Board of Directors of tfe Public Policy Institute of California. Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data are abailable for tfis publication. ISBN 978-1-58213-137-5 PUBLIC POLICY INSTITUTE OF CALIFORNIA 500 Wasfington Street, Suite 600 ● San Francisco, California 94111 Telepfone 415.291.4400 ● Fax 415.291.4401 PPIC S ACRAMENTO CENTER Senator Office Building ● 1121 L Street, Suite 801 ● Sacramento, California 95814 Telepfone 916.440.1120 ● Fax 916.440.1121 Additional resources related to immigration policy are available at bbb.ppic.org. The Public Policy Inftitute of California if dedicated to informing and improving public policy in California through independent, objective, nonpartifan refearch." 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