Could Mass Deportations Have an Effect on the Economy?

Not long after he was sworn in, President Trump began the process of securing the United States border and detaining or deporting undocumented nonimmigrants living and working in the country. During his campaign, Trump would occasionally claim he intended to remove all 11 million nonimmigrants, but he has amended that figure to more like 2 or 3 million. Still, losing several million nonimmigrants to mass deportations could have a significant effect on the U.S. economy.

How Removing Undocumented Employees Could Hurt The U.S. 

  • Social Security may see a reduction. The Social Security Administration published a report stating the agency received $12 billion from undocumented workers in 2010 alone. With the number of undocumented nonimmigrants holding steady at around 11 million for the past few years, it is conceivable that SSA continues to receive billions of dollars from a class of employees who won’t even benefit from paying into the fund. Many undocumented employees also pay federal and state taxes as well.
  • S. agricultural output could see a decline. It’s no secret that nonimmigrants make up a significant amount of the U.S. agricultural labor force. Their willingness to work long, hard days in hot fields allows the country to export more food and make more money. A massive deportation of these employees would impact agriculture greatly because, as the CEO of the advocacy group Western Growers point out, there aren’t enough U.S. citizens willing to take these jobs.
  • It’s expensive to deport nonimmigrants. It costs money to hunt down and deport undocumented nonimmigrants, as well as enact measures to keep nonimmigrants from entering the U.S. without a visa. Many reports had wide variances on estimated costs, but all of them agreed that the figure would be well over $100 billion. Additionally, the process could drag on for years, since an uptick in deportations does not necessarily mean there will be funds to hire more immigration judges to oversee these cases, or even more police to go out and collect nonimmigrants.
  • The U.S. GDP could suffer. This report points to a possible gross domestic product (GDP) loss of $434 billion every year. That figure combines the loss each and every state would experience, should Trump remove all 7 million undocumented workers from the country. In ten years, that figure could reach $4.7 trillion.
  • Financial institutions could take a hit. Many nonimmigrants have been able to secure a car loan or a mortgage despite the fact that they do not have a social security number. Trump’s own “college,” Trump University, outlined the whole process in a blog post. When undocumented immigrants open bank accounts and apply for loans, they add more money to the marketplace, which benefits both U.S. banks and everyone else who uses these institutions.

How an Immigration Attorney Can Help

If you’re concerned about a mass deportation affecting you or your family, you may want to speak to the immigration attorneys at Udall Shumway, PLC. We can discuss your fears and help you decide on the best solution for your particular case.


This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regarding Mass Deportations, or other Immigration Law matters, please feel free to contact Phil D. Ortega at 480.461.5330, log on to,  or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.