On July 5, 2015, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) issued a policy memo declaring that the “lawful status” requirements of the immigrant regulations for religious workers would no longer be considered when adjudicating the I-360 immigrant petition. In addition, USCIS will amend Title 8 CFR Sec. 204.5(m)(4) and (11) and remove the lawful status requirements from the immigrant regulations for religious workers. Prior to this change, to be eligible for permanent residence a religious worker needed to demonstrate that he/she had at least two years of experience (as a religious worker) and if that experience was gained in the U.S., the religious worker must have shown that he/she maintained lawful status (and work authorization) during that time. With this announcement, the lawful status requirement is eliminated and USCIS will not deny religious worker I-360 petitions on this basis.
Articles by CLINIC
This category includes articles written by CLINIC staff.
The USCIS published a proposed rule in the Federal register on July 22, 2015 that would expand the current provisional waiver program in two significant ways. The agency is allowing the public 60 days to comment on the proposed regulatory change. The provisional waiver program is currently open only to immediate relatives who, upon leaving the United States to consular process, will trigger the three- or ten-year bar for unlawful presence.
By Michelle N. Mendez
By Bradley Jenkins
By Laura Burdick
By Jen Riddle and Jill Bussey
This month marks the 3-year anniversary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Since DACA launched in 2012, over 664,000 individuals have been granted temporary reprieve from deportation and a work permit. All 50 states now permit DACA recipients to apply for driver’s licenses, following policy reversals in Nebraska and Arizona due to legislative action (in NE) and litigation (in AZ).
On Tuesday, May 26, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals denied the government’s request for an emergency stay of the injunction issued by a Brownsville judge in February. That injunction stopped implementation of the expanded DACA and the DAPA programs that were already set to begin. The district court found that the plaintiffs – 26 states – had standing to bring the lawsuit and it found that the government had violated the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) in failing to publish regulations before implementing the programs.
CENTER FOR IMMIGRANT INTEGRATION
By Louise Maria Puck, Intern
CLINIC’s new Center for Immigrant Integration seeks to encourage and facilitate the development of immigrant integration initiatives throughout its network through the creation of resources and trainings and through the dissemination of best practices currently present in CLINIC affiliate agencies.