Discussion Points for Punto Legal- August 24, 2016

Provisional Waivers. We have talked about the expansion of the provisional waiver program during the last two shows. Like every new immigration measure, there is always some confusion. So let me clear things up.

First, if you do not have a right to fix your papers in the U.S, you still have to go to Ciudad Juarez to fix your papers.

Second, you still have to have a qualifying relative to get the provisional waiver. In other words, you have to have a U.S. citizen or resident spouse or parent as a qualifying relative to get the provisional waiver.

I am going to give you some examples:

Graciela entered the U.S. without inspection in 1994. She had son, Wilfredo, born in the U. S. in 1995. He just turned 21, and filed an immigrant petition for his mother. Graciela has to fix her papers in Juarez and will trigger the 10-year bar to entry when she departs the U.S. If Graciela does not have a U.S. citizen or resident spouse or parent, she cannot get a waiver because she has no qualifying relative. Now, let’s say her father became a resident in 2015. Now Graciela has a qualifying relative for the provisional waiver. She will have to prove her father will experience extreme hardship if she does not get the waiver.

Hector entered the U.S. without inspection in 2004. He met and married Leticia who is a resident. Leticia wants to immigrate Hector. She filed an I-130 Petition for Alien Relative in 2014. Hector has to go to the U.S. Consulate in Juarez to fix his papers. Before he goes to Juarez, he can file for the provisional or stateside waiver of his unlawful presence bar to entry, and know—before he goes—whether or not he got the waiver. Of course, if he does not get the waiver, he does not travel to Juarez.

Jose Luis entered the U.S. on visa in 2005. He met and married Claudia who is a resident. Claudia has not been a resident for five years, so she can’t apply for citizenship. Thus, the entry on a visa is of no help to Jose Luis. He has to go to Juarez to fix his papers, but he has heard a lot of bad stories about people seeking waivers after they go to Juarez. But the provisional waiver solves his problem. He can obtain the waiver in the U.S. and will only have to spend 6-12 days in Juarez.

Sergio is 20 years old. Sergio’s mother brought him to the U.S. illegally when he was five years old. His mother divorced Sergio’s father and remarried a man who is now Sergio’s step-father. This took place when Sergio was 15. Sergio’s step-father is a resident. He files an I-130 Petition for Alien Relative for Sergio. Sergio will have to go to Juarez to fix his papers. But he can apply for the provisional waiver before he goes to Juarez. His waiver will be based on showing an extreme hardship to his step-father and his mother, if she has become a resident.

Leidy came to the U.S. in 1999 from El Salvador. She married a U.S. citizen and became a resident, then a citizen. She filed an I-130 Petition for Alien Relative for her brother, Wilmer, on September 2, 2003. That petition became current on 1 August 2016. Wilmer came to the U.S. illegally in 2002. He has to go to San Salvador to fix his papers. His sister is not a qualifying relative for the waiver. He needs a U.S. citizen or resdient spouse or parent for the waiver. If Leidy has already immigrated Wilmer’s mother to the U.S. Wilmer can apply for the provisional waiver based on an extreme hardship to his mother.