United States Immigration
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The Immigration and Nationality Act, INA, was created in 1952. Before the INA, a variety of statutes governed immigration law but were not organized in one location. The Act has been amended many times over the years, but is still the basic body of immigration law.

The INA is divided into titles, chapters, and sections. Although it stands alone as a body of law, the Immigration and Nationality Act is also contained in the United States Code USC. The code is a collection of all the laws of the United States. It is arranged in fifty subject titles by general alphabetic order. Title 8 of the US Code is but one of the fifty titles and deals with aliens and nationality. When browsing the INA or other statutes you will often see reference to the US Code citation. For example, Section 208 of the INA deals with asylum, and is also contained in 8 USC 1158. Although it is correct to refer to a specific section by either its INA citation or its US Code, the INA citation is more commonly used.

The Immigration and Nationality Act has been amended many times. When Congress enacts a law, it generally does not re-write the entire body of law, or even entire sections of a law, but instead adds to or changes specific words within a section. These changes are then reflected within the larger body of law.

The language changing the larger body of law is generally referred to as the amendatory language.

For more information about United States immigration, please visit U.S. Immigration Support.

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