Form I-601A Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that they will begin accepting a new form of the inadmissibility waiver form on March 4, 2013.
The new form, entitled I-601A Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver, will be available exclusively for undocumented immigrants in the United States who are attempting to legally immigrate to the United States on a family visa.
This new waiver is the latest in a string of immigration reform measures enacted by President Barack Obama, the most recent being the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
Purpose of the I-601A Waiver
The Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver was created to shorten the period of time that undocumented immigrants will be separated from their legally present family members.
The United States recognizes that many of these undocumented immigrants are responsible for the care, wellbeing and support of their families. Under current laws, if they do attempt to immigrate legally they may be subjected to long periods of time outside of the United States which would create undue stress on the family unit and potentially compromise the family's integrity.
One of the beliefs of United States immigration is the protection and assistance of the family unit and this waiver strives towards that goal.
I-601A Eligibility Requirements
The Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver is available to applicants who meet the following requirements:
- In order to get the waiver is if the applicant's only barring quality is unlawful presence. Immigration fraud, criminal convictions or other such issues will not be waived.
- The applicant must leave the United States for a period of time in order to apply for their visa at an American consulate. Currently, if an applicant left the United States to apply for a visa they would have to wait up to ten years to be let back into the United States. The waiver significantly reduces that amount of time.
- The applicant must be able to prove that they are an immediate relative (parent, child or spouse) to a United States citizen.
- The applicant must also show through documentation that their US citizen relative would experience a great deal of financial hardship if they were removed from the United States for an extended period of time.
After the waiver is accepted it will not be revoked unless:
- The applicant re-enters the United States illegally,
- The underlying immigration petition is revoked,
- Or if the consulate officer determines that the immigrant applicant is inadmissible for some other reason.
Denied or revoked provisional waivers will not be open to appeal or reconsideration in any situation.
Filing the waiver itself will not confer any additional rights or status to the applicant while in the United States. The purpose of the form is simply to shorten the period of time that the applicant will have to spend outside of the United States during their immigration application.
Immigrants currently in removal proceedings may be able to file for a provisional waiver, but there has not yet been a final ruling in this matter.