For immigrants coming to Florida or other U.S. states, job opportunities, safety from crime or persecution, and becoming reunited with relatives may all be major personal benefits of migrating. Critics of immigration sometimes question whether U.S. society in general enjoys any benefits from these new residents, but a new study says that Florida gathers nearly $605 million in tax revenue from undocumented workers, and could get even more if immigration policy changed.
This conclusion, reported by the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, comes from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, a group that supports immigration reform. It issued a report, based on data from 2012, that found that undocumented workers paid an estimated 7.3 percent of their income in taxes. That figure would increase by 10 percent if they were able to adjust their status to legal immigrants, the report says.
Despite their immigration status, undocumented workers pay sales taxes and excise taxes on gas, two of the largest sources of revenue for the state of Florida, according the institute’s executive director.
Of course, immigration reform is a very controversial issue in the U.S., and many people attempt to go through regular channels to gain or adjust their legal status to live and work in this country. With multiple types of visas available, and limits on how many the U.S. government issues each year, obtaining permission to immigrate can be difficult.
Still, with the help of an immigration attorney, many people are able to come to Florida, or stay in the state, to pursue their educational and career dreams.