The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has expanded the existing provisional waiver process that was established in 2013, allowing specific family members of U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents (green card carriers), as well as those who are eligible for immigrant visas, to navigate the U.S. immigration process more easily. The new rule will go into effect on August 29, 2016.
This provisional unlawful waiver is aimed for those who are eligible to receive a green card in the United States but afraid of leaving the country to attend their consular visa interview, out of fear that they will not be allowed to re-enter the U.S. due to their illegal stay. Fortunately, such individuals are able to apply for this wavier and travel back to their home countries, attend their visa interviews, and come back to the U.S., pending application approval.
Since the USCIS’ provisional waiver program is designed to unite families, it reduces the time eligible applicants must wait to complete their immigration processing abroad. In addition, the program improves administrative efficiency and reduces the time eligible applicants are away from their family members who are U.S. citizens or green card carriers.
These individuals can apply for this waiver of the “unlawful presence ground of inadmissibility” if their U.S. citizen immediate family member would experience extreme hardship if the waiver is not granted. Currently, only immediate relatives of U.S. citizens are eligible to apply before leaving the U.S. for processing purposes.
If you are interested to find out if your loved one is eligible for the provision waiver according to USCIS’ new ruling, contact Sintsirmas & Mueller and schedule a consultation with our North East Ohio immigration lawyers today.