NBER

Rebecca Lessem

Tepper School of Business
5000 Forbes Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15213

E-Mail: EmailAddress: hidden: you can email any NBER-related person as first underscore last at nber dot org
Institutional Affiliation: Carnegie Mellon University

NBER Working Papers and Publications

February 2020How do U.S. Visa Policies Affect Unauthorized Immigration?
with Brian K. Kovak: w26790
We examine how increasing the number of visas available to potential migrants would affect unauthorized immigration from Mexico to the U.S. Current U.S. policy bans people who are deported from receiving legal status for a period of time. This policy aims to serve as an additional deterrent to unauthorized immigration, but may be ineffective given that most potential Mexican migrants have an extremely low probability of ever being able to legally move to the U.S. We develop a dynamic discrete location choice model, which we estimate using data from the Mexican Migration Project, and consider various counterfactual policies that vary the intensity of enforcement and access to work visas. We find that legal entry bans for deported individuals are ineffective at current rates of legal imm...

Published: Brian K. Kovak & Rebecca Lessem, 2020. "How do U.S. Visa Policies Affect Unauthorized Immigration?," Journal of Monetary Economics, .

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