Why Are Green Card Waiver Applications Denied?

Obtaining a green card and achieving lawful permanent residency in the United States is a significant milestone in the immigration journey. However, for individuals who are facing specific grounds of inadmissibility, the path to a green card often involves seeking waivers. Although many individuals successfully obtain waivers, there’s no guarantee that a waiver application will be approved. Fortunately, by understanding some of the most common reasons for denial, you can avoid many of the pitfalls and work to build a stronger case. 

Exploring Green Card Waivers 

Green card waivers offer a second chance to individuals who might otherwise be barred from obtaining permanent residency due to factors such as criminal convictions, fraud, unlawful presence, or health-related issues. Here’s a closer look at some of the most common green card waivers and the grounds they address:

I-601 Waiver (Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility)

The I-601 waiver is intended to allow certain individuals who are deemed inadmissible due to a range of issues (including certain criminal convictions, immigration fraud or misrepresentation, health-related concerns, and more) to request an exemption from their inadmissibility grounds. Common reasons for denials include: 

  • Failure to provide compelling evidence that supports the waiver request.
  • Not meeting the specific criteria for the waiver.
  • Committing serious crimes that pose a threat to public safety or national security.
  • A history of providing false information or fraudulent documents.

I-601A Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver

The I-601A waiver allows qualifying relatives of U.S. citizens or permanent residents to apply for a waiver of the three or ten-year bar before leaving the U.S. to attend their immigrant visa consular interview abroad. Some common reasons that this waiver gets denied are:

  • Failing to provide sufficient evidence that the separation during the three- or ten-year bar would cause extreme hardship to a qualifying family member.
  • Not meeting the requirements for immediate relative status or lawful presence.

VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) Waiver 

The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) Waiver is a provision in the United States immigration law that allows certain abused spouses, children, and parents of US citizens or lawful permanent residents (green card holders) to request an exception from specific grounds of inadmissibility. Abuse survivors seeking a green card through VAWA provisions can face denial if:

  • Not providing sufficient evidence of the abuse that occurred.
  • Discrepancies in the provided evidence of abuse.

212(h) and 212(i) Waivers

These waivers address criminal convictions and fraud, respectively. Denial reasons include:

  • Crimes of moral turpitude, drug offenses, or crimes posing a security threat.
  • Failure to prove reformation after criminal activities.
  • Not showing a sincere effort to correct past fraudulent activities.

Navigating the Green Card Waiver Process 

Successfully navigating the green card waiver process requires a comprehensive understanding of the specific requirements for each type of waiver, coupled with diligent documentation and legal guidance. Working closely with an experienced immigration attorney can help you craft a strong case, anticipate potential pitfalls, and address any concerns that might lead to denials.

With over 20 years of experience in immigration law, the Ranchod Law Group offers comprehensive guidance on various types of green card waivers. We provide personalized guidance and create a detailed legal argument that thoroughly outlines why a waiver should be granted. To discuss your case and eligibility, contact us today at (916) 613-3553 to schedule a consultation.

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