I-601A Hardship Waiver Available to Spouses and Children of Lawful Permanent Residents

Saturday, August 27, 2016 | Last Updated: August 11, 2016
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BREAKING NEWS: On July 29, 2016, USCIS announced a final rule extending the I-601A Provisional Waiver to include spouses and children of lawful permanent residents.

This expansion will go into effect August 29, 2016

Until now, children and spouses of lawful permanent residents seeking to obtain a waiver of inadmissibility due to an unlawful entry and presence were required to exit the country while they awaited an approval of their waiver—which could take anywhere from six to twelve months. They were forced to leave their family, work and lives behind hoping they would be able to return when and if their waiver was granted. If the waiver was denied, they were faced with a three or ten-year bar to admission depending on the length of time they were unlawfully present in the United States prior to exiting.

The expansion will now allow the spouses and children of lawful permanent residents to file for their waiver inside the United States and await a decision here rather than having to exit the country. To qualify for an I-601A waiver, applicants must establish that their lawful permanent resident spouse or parent would suffer extreme hardship if the applicants are not allowed to return to the United States. The expansion does not change the requirement that the applicant exit the country for their interview once the waiver is granted—however the exit is significantly reduced from what would have taken several months of uncertainty to usually only a week or two with an already approved waiver.

If you think you qualify for an I-601A waiver it is important you contact an experienced immigration attorney who can evaluate the specifics of your case to make sure you qualify. There are multiple factors that can affect your case and cause a denial, such as multiple unlawful entries and a criminal record.

Furthermore, preparing and collecting evidence to prove extreme hardship is a daunting task that requires guidance and experience. If you would like to see if you qualify and want to have the merits of your case evaluated, please give the Ranchod Law Group a call to schedule a consultation.

Contact the Ranchod Law Group with offices in Sacramento and Santa Clara at 916-613-3553 or info@ranchodlaw.com if you have immigration questions.

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5 star Review on Google for a K-1 Fiancé Visa

Saturday, August 27, 2016 | Last Updated: July 6, 2016
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“After deciding to bring my future wife here to the US from China I did a lot of fiancé K-1 visa research online. I was very overwhelmed with the process and decided to hire an immigration attorney. I did some searches and came across the Ranchod Law Group. I met Kaushik and immediately felt that his services were exactly what I needed. Kaushik’s group was very professional and made my life much less stressful during our visa and later green card process. Emma took immediate action when one of our documents was reported as missing in our initial visa application. Later, Yesenia’s assistance in preparing us for our green card interview was very helpful. My wife and I are very pleased with the services we received and highly recommend the Ranchod Law Group. Dave and Tianan”

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Aging Out: Is My Child Protected under the Child Status Protection Act (CSPA)?

Saturday, August 27, 2016 | Last Updated: July 6, 2016
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Because certain family based petitions have priority dates that take over a decade to become current, many parents worry about their children “aging out” before there is a visa available for them and wonder if the Child Protection Act will protect their children.

For immigration purposes a “child” is defined as an individual who is unmarried and under the age of 21

Before the Child Protection Act (CSPA) took effect on August 6, 2002, a beneficiary who turned 21 at any time prior to receiving permanent residence could not be considered a child for immigration purposes. This situation is described as “aging out.” Children who “aged out” were no longer eligible for the intended immigration benefit.

The Child Protection Act altered when and how a child would be considered to have “aged out” in the visa petition process. This article will discuss two specific circumstances:

  1. When the child is the son or daughter of a US citizen
  2. When the child is a son or daughter of a legal permanent resident who naturalizes
  3. Other children

Child of a U.S. Citizen

The son or daughter of a U.S. citizen will not “age out” as long as the petition Form I-130 was filed before the child turned 21. This is often referred to as “freezing”; in other words the child’s age halts for immigration purposes. For example: U.S. citizen father properly files Form I-130 on behalf of his son who is 5 months shy of turning 21 and the adjudication of his petition takes 8 months causing him to “age out” — in this case the child is protected by CSPA because his age “froze” at the time Form I-130 was filed when still 20 years old.

Child of a Legal Permanent Resident Who Naturalizes

Furthermore, where a legal permanent resident has filed a petition for his child and he subsequently naturalizes prior to the child “aging out,” that child is also protected by CSPA. That child’s age will also “freeze” at the time the legal permanent resident father naturalizes. However, this only applies to a child whose petition was first filed based on being the child of a legal permanent resident who subsequently naturalizes.

Other Children: Derivatives

While the first two categories were straight forward, the next category is much more complicated requiring careful analysis. “Other” children’s age is determined by taking the age of the child at the time the immigrant visa number becomes available reduced by the time a properly filed I-130 petition was pending. Additionally, to qualify the child must file for legal permanent status within one year of the approval of the petition.

Let’s look at an example: John, a U.S. Citizen filed an I-130 petition on behalf of his sister Penny. At that time Penny had a son Adam who was Penny’s derivative in the application. The I-130 was approved exactly one year after it was properly filed and received. Sixteen years later, the priority date became current—meaning a visa number became available. Unfortunately, a few days before the visa number became available, Adam had turned 21. Thankfully, CSPA applies to Adam’s case. Even though Adam had already turned 21, CSPS allows him to subtract the time a petition was pending from his current age at the time a visa number became available. In this case the I-130 was pending 1 year from the time it was received until the time it was approved. Thus, Adam is considered to still be 20 years old and a qualified derivative eligible for an immigrant visa.

Most cases are much more complicated than Adam’s and require an in depth analysis of dates. Consequently, it is best to consult with an experienced attorney who can evaluate the particulars of your case.

Contact our office if you have immigration questions at 916-613-3353 or info@ranchodlaw.com, or fill out our form and find out how we can help you today.

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