“When I was young I considered myself an American. I ate hot dogs and hamburgers on the 4th of July, and I even have a cousin who served his country in the Iraq war.

I am one of five children, of which three are US citizens and two are not. I am not.” Ruben, Illnios.

Ruben is an illegal immigrant living in the USA. He is giving a short description of his situation, and his feelings around being an illegal immigrant in the USA.

The definition of an illegal immigrant is, according to, a person who enters a country without the government’s permission, or who chooses to stay in a country past the day of their visa’s end.

The United States of the America is the country in which the most foreign born immigrants live, and also the country which has received the most unauthorized immigrants.

USA’s undocumented population consists of individuals over a range of age, sex and ethnic groups.

Having only the fact they are living in the USA illegally in common, they are close to impossible to spot.

What are the differences between the standard of living of these unauthorized residents of the USA?

“They’re Americans in their heart. In their minds. In every single way but one: on paper. They were brought to this country by their parents.

Sometimes even as infants, and often have no idea that they’re undocumented until they apply for a job, or a driver’s license.”

President of the United States, Barack Obama, June 15 2012. 7 Barack Obama does in this quote stand up for the illegal immigrants in the USA.

According to The Official Website of the Homeland Security, there were about 11,5 million unauthorized immigrants in the USA in 2011.8

In other words, this means that the amount of people illegally living in the USA equals more than twice as many people as the whole population of Norway.

About 59% of the undocumented residents are according to originally from Mexico, which means that Mexico is the leading country of origin of the illegal immigrants.9

Table 1 shows from which countries the most illegal immigrants come, and figure 2 shows from which part of the world the most undocumented immigrants come (appendix 1).

10 The majority of illegal immigrants are between the age of 25 and 44. (For details, see figure 3 in appendix 1.)

Today, some people believe that there is a decrease in illegal immigration. However, the changes are so small that the numbers are only estimates and can not be confirmed.

Some may argue that this is caused by Mexico’s growing economy, and the increasing standard of living as well. Others claim that this is caused by the fact that the unemployment rate in the USA today is quite high.

It is a well-known fact that many undocumented immigrants - despite the fact that they live in the United States illegally, go to university, pay taxes and even start their own businesses.