Category Archives: Family Based Immigration

AILA’s 8 Points on the President’s Immigration Accountability Executive Actions

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Based on a briefing today at the White House, the following elements are expected to be part of the Administration’s announcement on immigration executive actions, also known as the President’s Immigration Accountability Executive Actions. Our understanding is that details (and memos) are still being finalized, and will be released in the coming hours, days, weeks, and months.

Below is a summary of some of the changes expected to be announced tonight at 8pm ET or tomorrow in Las Vegas. AILA will continue to analyze information as it is released and provide updates on AILA InfoNet. Also, visit AILA’s Administrative Reform 2014 for updates.

Enforcement Priorities

Many of the existing ICE memos on enforcement priorities and prosecutorial discretion will be replaced by a new memo with three priorities: (1) Suspected terrorists, convicted felons (including aggravated felonies), convicted gang members, and persons apprehended on the border; (2) Persons convicted of serious or multiple misdemeanors and very recent border crossers (those who entered after January 1, 2014); and (3) Those who, after January 1, 2014, failed to leave under a removal order or returned after removal. The memo will contain strong language on the use of prosecutorial discretion.

Deferred Action Benefiting Approximately 4.4 Million Undocumented Individuals

Two deferred action initiatives will be rolled out that are estimated to benefit 4.4 million undocumented individuals: (1) Deferred Action for Parents (DAP): Parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents (of any age) who have been continuously present since January 1, 2010, and who pass background checks and pay back taxes; and (2) DACA Expansion: The age cap on DACA will be removed and the date when continuous presence must have started will be changed from June 15, 2007 to January 1, 2010. Both of these initiatives will provide deferred action for three years. The expanded DACA should be up and running in 90 days and deferred action for parents in 180 days. Note: no initiative specifically for parents of DACA recipients was included.

I-601A Waiver Expansion

The I-601A provisional waiver will be expanded to include spouses and children of lawful permanent residents. An expansion and clarification of the definition of “extreme hardship” is also expected.
Timing of Filing for Adjustment of Status

The ability of individuals with an approved employment-based immigrant petition who are caught in the quota backlogs to file for adjustment of status will be advanced to permit them to obtain the benefits of a pending adjustment. This is expected to impact about 410,000 people. This will be done by regulation.
Business Immigration Changes

A number of business immigration improvements are to be announced. For example, certain investors will be eligible for parole into the U.S., or for parole-in-place, and national interest waivers could be available for entrepreneurs, researchers, inventors, and founders. Also, the term “same or similar” for AC-21 purposes will be clarified, L-1B guidance will be released, the H-4 EAD regulation will be finalized, and the length of time permitted on OPT for STEM graduates will be expanded. Additionally, the rulemaking process will be undertaken to modernize the PERM labor certification program and may include a harmless error provision.

Visa Modernization

There will be a Presidential Memorandum directing the various immigration-related agencies to look at modernizing the visa system, with a view to making optimal use of the numbers of visas available under law. Issues such as whether derivatives should be counted towards the visa quota and whether past unused visa numbers can be recaptured are expected to be included in this effort.
State and Local

Secure Communities will be discontinued and replaced with a new initiative, the Priority Enforcement Program (PEP). Details are still forthcoming on what PEP will entail, but in certain circumstances, detainers may be replaced by requests for notification to ICE when a law enforcement entity is about to release an individual.
Parole-in-Place

Parole-in-place will be expanded to include families of individuals trying to enlist in the armed forces, as some branches of the military ban applicants who have undocumented family members.

How Many Photos Are Needed When Filing Application for Adjustment of Status

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USCIS clarified the photo requirements for the filing of the adjustment of status and its ancillary benefits in a teleconference with AILA Liaison on February 27, 2013 : The adjustment of status applications should include six photos in total per applicant, if all three forms listed below are filed: Two for the I-485 Application toContinue Reading

NEW I-601 WAIVER PROCESS WILL BE EFFECTIVE ON MARCH 4 2013

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WASHINGTON—Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano today announced the posting of a final rule in the Federal Register that reduces the time U.S. citizens are separated from their immediate relatives (spouse, children and parents), who are in the process of obtaining visas to become lawful permanent residents of the United States under certain circumstances. TheContinue Reading

HOW TO WRITE AN AFFIDAVIT TO SUPPORT A MARRIAGE BASED IMMMIGRATION PETITION

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Affidavits are widely used in immigration cases. In many cases, affidavits can be submitted in connection with an immigration petition. For example, in marriage based immigration petition, affidavits of third parties are often submitted to prove the bona fide marital relationship between petitioner and the alien. What is an affidavit? An affidavit is a declarationContinue Reading

Take Affidavit of Support Seriously

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Many U.S. citizens and permanent residents signed an affidavit of support for an immigrant without knowing what responsibilities they have promised to take. The Affidavit of Support (I-864) is an enforceable contract by the sponsored person, the local, state or federal government or any agency providing a means-tested public benefit. The sponsor and joint sponsorContinue Reading

How Does Passport Expiration Date Affect I-94 Period of Stay

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Visitors traveling to the United States are required to be in possession of passports that are valid for six months beyond the period of their intended stay in the United States. Citizens of certain countries are exempt the six-month rule and need only have a passport valid for their intended period of stay. When travelersContinue Reading

2011 Poverty Guidelines

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Persons in Family 48 Contiguous States and D.C. Alaska Hawaii 1 $10,890 $13,600 $12,540 2 14,710 18,380 16,930 3 18,530 23,160 21,320 4 22,350 27,940 25,710 5 26,170 32,720 30,100 6 29,990 37,500 34,490 7 33,810 42,280 38,880 8 37,630 47,060 43,270 For each additional person, add 3,820 4,780 4,390

2010 Poverty Guidelines

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The 2010 federal poverty guidelines are exactly the same as the 2009 federal poverty guidelines. After a long delay, the US Department of Health & Human Services published the 2010 federal poverty guidelines on August 3, 2010 in the Federal Register. Official Federal Poverty Guidelines for the Remainder of 2010 2010 Federal Poverty Guidelines forContinue Reading