What Texas SB4 May Mean for Immigration and How Law Firms Are Preparing


By Taylor Dahlem
in LollyLaw

Now available on-demand!

Rulings on immigration laws are being litigated in courts across the country, with many practitioners’ eyes on Texas’ Senate Bill 4 for a signal of potential changes on the horizon. As SB4 navigates The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, law firms are carefully planning for the potential of increased case volume and complexity as the enforcement of immigration status potentially broadens. 

In this live stream recording, “What Texas SB4 May Mean for Immigration and How Law Firms Are Preparing,” Jacqueline Watson (Partner at JLW Immigration Law Group, AILA National Treasurer) and Briggs Jackson (Account Manager at LollyLaw) discuss potential implications around Texas SB4 and other key immigration trends, and demonstrate how practitioners are leveraging immigration-specific software to help efficiently manage firm operations in this evolving landscape.

We covered Texas Senate Bill 4’s current status and the potential implications for immigration law firms in Texas and across the country. You’ll learn how to stay connected with the latest education around emerging immigration laws like Texas SB4 and how LollyLaw’s industry-leading case management and automation platform helps you nimbly manage the increasing caseload amidst impactful policy changes. 

What is Texas Senate Bill 4? (8:07)

While the federal government has always had sole authority over immigration law enforcement, Texas SB4 was passed and signed into law on November 2023 to empower Texas law enforcement agencies to enforce immigration laws locally. More specifically, enabling officials to arrest and prosecute non-citizens suspected to have illegally (re)entered Texas and to effectuate deportations.

However, Texas SB4 remains temporarily blocked in federal court due to an ongoing lawsuit.

The outcome of Similar Bills In The Past (13:16)

Similar bills have been signed into law in the past that can help us glean insight into where the Texas SB4 decision could be headed. 

Enacted in 2010, Arizona Senate Bill 1070 was similar, but less far-reaching than Texas SB4. This Bill required police to determine the immigrant status of anyone arrested on reasonable suspicion of not being legally in the United States.

Ultimately the Bill’s legality was challenged and nullified in 2012 as a result of Arizona v. United States. However, Arizona SB1070 still made an impact on asylum-seekers, families, and immigration law firms alike. For example, between 2010 and 2012, firms saw a 93% increase in unaccompanied migrant children cases.

How Might Immigration Firms Be Affected? (16:00)

Whether Texas SB4 is upheld or not, immigration firms will still be affected. Firms historically have seen consultation and case volume increase when similar Bills have been introduced. On top of actual law enforcement, general confusion around these new laws tends to increase caseload.

Immigration firms might also experience added complexity to their already large number of cases. As a result of more arrests due to suspicion of illegally (re) entering Texas, firms could see a rise in family separations, asylum denial before an official appointment, and added liability to companies that employ migrants with uncertain employment status.

What Can Firms Do To Prepare (19:05)

To serve your clients to the best of your abilities amidst uncertainty, stay connected with the latest news from AILA, ACLU, and MALDEF for guidance and network resources.

Additionally, your firm’s choice of immigration-specific practice management software and how you leverage the technology are fundamental to mitigating the challenges prompted by policy changes. When legislation like Texas SB4 is passed, triggering increased demand in representation and new case complexities, firms can rely on LollyLaw’s case management automation to keep their internal processes swift and simple.

How LollyLaw Can Help Automate and Enhance Firm Processes (23:28)

A smooth intake and onboarding process is your first line of defense and offense. This stage sets the tone for productivity throughout a case and is one of the largest factors in determining potential caseload. LollyLaw offers functionality to streamline the intake process. Providing 40+ immigration-specific questionnaires that can be translated and filled out automatically with client data syncing and real-time client collaboration.

Workflow automation is a key unlock for firms experiencing increased case amount and complexity. However, firms tend to delay implementing these workflows due to limited time and resources. LollyLaw provides a solid foundation of over 50 immigration case-type workflows, which enables your firm to get over that hump. So you already have most of the relevant form sets and a standard workflow that you can easily customize to fit your firm’s needs!

Watch the Full Recording to Learn More

LollyLaw is designed to help you efficiently manage ever-increasing caseloads, ensuring you can seamlessly adapt to policy changes like Texas SB4. 

To get an even clearer picture of how we can help, view the full recording of our live stream!

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Taylor Dahlem

Taylor is the Senior Product Marketing Specialist at LollyLaw. He is on a mission to deliver technology solutions that provide the most value to legal professionals daily through exciting and impactful go-to-market campaigns.

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