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. citizen spouse or parent. To be eligible, the applicant would need to have an approved I-130 or I-360 petition and have paid the immigrant visa fee bill.
The USCIS will begin receiving and adjudicating the provisional waivers on March 4, 2013. No applications will be accepted before that date. Applicants will be using a new Form I-601A, which the agency will publish sometime before that date. The filing fee for the waiver application is $585. There is no filing fee waiver available for the provisional waiver or the biometrics that are required as part of the process.