Inadmissibility and Waivers

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The USCIS circulated draft guidance on October 7th interpreting the term “extreme hardship” and explaining how it should be applied to waiver applications.

Read updates on: Fee Waivers (Form I-912), Expansion of the Provisional Waiver Program, Board of Immigration Appeals Recognition & Accreditation, USCIS Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, Draft Extreme Hardship Policy Guidance for Waiver Applications.

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.

By Susan Schreiber

The concept of admission is central to many critical issues in immigration law. If your client was “admitted,” he or she may qualify to adjust status under INA § 245(a). If your client was “admitted,” he or she is subject to the grounds of deportability, not inadmissibility, and the government will have the burden of proof. And if your client was “admitted,” this may impact on available remedies for relief from removal.

By Susan Schreiber

By Ilissa Mira

Unlawful voting has serious consequences for noncitizens.  The BIA confirmed this in a precedent decision finding that a noncitizen is removable under INA § 237(a)(6)(A), regardless of whether the alien knew that he or she was unlawfully voting in violation of 18 USC § 611(a).  Matter of Fitzpatrick, 26 I&N Dec. 559 (BIA 2015).

 

If you represent U visa and U status applicants, you already know that immigration judges have no jurisdiction over applications for U status or for applications for adjustment of status under INA § 245(m).  By statute, USCIS has exclusive jurisdiction over theses applications, including waivers of inadmissibility under INA § 212(d)(14), the waiver provision that exclusively applies to the U status applicants.

By Susan Schreiber

If you represent LPRs in removal proceedings, you will want to take a close look at the Board's recent  decision in Matter of Abdelghany, 26  I&N Dec. 254 (BIA 2014), which presents a new framework for analyzing LPR eligibility for INA § 212 (c) waivers.  It will likely result in more LPRs qualifying for this relief.

By Susan Schreiber

Three recent circuit court decisions provide some good news for immigrants related to immigration consequences of criminal offenses. These decisions, summarized below, address (a) analyzing when an offense is a crime of moral turpitude; (b) LPR eligibility for an INA § 212(h) waiver; and (c) conviction finality.

By Tatyana Delgado

On February 5, 2014, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of State (DOS) announced two new exemptions from the terrorism-related inadmissibility grounds (TRIG) found at INA§ 212(a)(3).  

TRIG aims to exclude individuals who have or will engage in terrorist activities, such as providing material support to terrorist organizations or their members.  Material support includes providing transportation, communications, funds, explosives, or training, among other activities. 

By Kristina Karpinski

On November 14, 2013, USCIS issued a policy memorandum on adjudication of Form I-485, Application to Register or Adjust Status, filed by immediate relatives of U.S. citizens admitted to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).  This long awaited guidance clarifies USCIS's position on adjudication of adjustment cases filed after the applicant's 90-day period of admission has expired and outlines when a case should be referred to ICE.

CLINIC's Amicus Brief to the Supreme Court

The above document is a copy of the amicus brief that CLINIC filed with the US Supreme Court in a case challenging the government’s interpretation of a part of the CSPA.

New Policy on Minors and False Claims to U.S. Citizenship

By Sarah Bronstein

BIA Affirms Effect of Entry with False Claim of Citizenship

By Charles Wheeler

On September 26-27, 2013, CLINIC conducted a two-day training in Kansas City on provisional adjudication of unlawful presence waivers. The training included a presentation by Robert Blackwood, Assistant Section Director for Adjudications at the National Benefits Center (NBC), who gave an update on the waiver adjudication process at the NBC and answered questions from training participants. A summary of the information he provided appears below.

On August 5, CLINIC sent a letter to Director Mayorkas regarding what we believe to be the improper implementation of USCIS's regulations governing the provisional waiver for unlawful presence.

Click Here to read the letter.

Board Rejects Stand-Alone 212(h) Waiver

By Susan Schreiber

 Supreme Court Revives the Categorical Approach

By Sarah Bronstein

This webinar training focuses on how to obtain a fee waiver for a naturalization applicant who is unable to pay the USCIS application fee. We discuss the fee waiver eligibility criteria, the application process with the Form I-912, and the documentation requirements. We also discuss problems or pitfalls that may arise and how to avoid these, as well as special considerations for completing fee waiver applications at naturalization group processing workshops.

Early planning and preparation for CIR implementation includes budgeting and resource development.  This webinar introduces resources to help CLINIC affiliates in these processes.  Included in the webinar is a newly-released CIR Preparation Checklist for program directors to guide their planning, webinar slides on budgeting decisions and several resource development tools including a proposal template, budget narrative and work plan to seek external funding.

This webinar discussed the recent final regulation implementing the provisional waivers for unlawful presence.

Click here to view the PowerPoint slides.

Held on January 8, 2013.

On January 3, 2013, the USCIS finalized its regulation regarding the adjudication of waivers for those who are consular processing and would be triggering the unlawful presence ground of inadmissibility.  The rule provides a process by which the agency will adjudicate these waivers before the applicants leave for their immigrant visa interview.  The procedure would be available only to immediate relatives who are inadmissible based on unlawful presence – and no other grounds – and who can establish extreme hardship to a qualifying U.S.

On January 9, 2012, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced its intention to change its current process for filing and adjudicating certain applications for waivers of inadmissibility filed in connection with an immediate relative immigrant petition.  On April 2, 2012, the agency issued proposed regulations to allow certain applicants to apply for and receive a provisional unlawful presence waiver prior to departing the U.S.

The USCIS has published its proposed regulation on stateside pre-adjudication of unlawful presence waivers.