I-601 and I-601A Provisional Waiver Lawyer
Helping Green Card Applicants Stay in the U.S.
Unlawful presence waivers make it possible for you to remain in the U.S. during the green card application process, even if you were here unlawfully or overstayed your visa. In a normal process, undocumented immigrants are forced to leave the country before applying for permanent residency. Many of them are barred from re-entry for years as a penalty for their breach of immigration law. However, under certain circumstances, the USCIS will waive their right to make you leave during the green card process—allowing you to stay home, at your job, or with your family.
What Is a Waiver of Illegal Presence & Am I Eligible?
The provisional waiver is a type of pardon that is available for certain undocumented immigrants who are parents or spouses of lawful permanent residents or U.S. citizens. Specifically, the waiver applies to those who have been residing in the US for several years after an entry without inspection. Based upon current laws, undocumented individuals who entered the U.S. without inspections must travel to a U.S. consulate abroad to receiving their green card as their undocumented entry or violation of status prohibits adjustment of status from within the US.
Prior to these changes, if an undocumented individual left the U.S. for the consular process, they would be automatically subject to the three (3) and ten (10) year bars and are would be ineligible to return to the U.S unless they applied for and were granted an I-601 waiver at the consulate abroad.
The new regulations allow these family members to remain in the U.S. and apply for the pardon of illegal presence from within the U.S. before leaving. Once approved, they may leave to attend a consular interview and re-enter without being subject to the bars and long wait times. Note the pardon will only cure illegal entry. If there is another ground of inadmissibility, such as a criminal conviction, fraud, or prior orders of removal, then re-entry will be delayed or perhaps denied.
Am I Eligible for the I-601A Waiver?
To qualify for either of the waivers, the applicant must establish that their US citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse or parent would experience “extreme hardship” if the applicant was not allowed to return to the U.S. after a trip abroad. Note: children are not relatives for the waiver.
Eligibility for the program is limited to people that meet specific criteria:
- Present for Application Submission & Status Adjustment Interview: The person applying for the waiver is present in the USA at the time the application is submitted and will remain present in the US at least until the interview is scheduled by consular staff to adjust status.
- Favorable History: Unlawful presence in the country is the only ground of inadmissibility that the waiver is designed to pardon. If there is some other unfavorable history, the waiver may be denied.
- Beneficiary of an Approved I-130: The applicant must be the beneficiary of an approved I-130 filed by a family member (such as a husband, wife, parent or child over 21 or sibling) who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident. The qualifying relative, only a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident parent or spouse, is also required to demonstrate "extreme hardship" to qualify for the waiver.
- Beneficiary of an Approved I-140: The applicant must be the beneficiary of an approved I-140 petition filed by an employer.
- No Final Order of Deportation Present: In addition, the applicant must not have a final order of deportation. One may apply for the waiver if deportation proceedings are still open or the proceedings have already been terminated or administratively closed.
What is Extreme Hardship?
Extreme hardship is not defined by statute and is different for each applicant. Generally, USCIS is looking for any of the following factors:
- Qualifying relative cannot move abroad due to serious medical condition
- Qualifying relative has major medical issue and cannot travel abroad and cannot be left alone
- Qualifying relative would be unable to work abroad and would lose all benefits and suffer financially
- Qualifying relative is caring for other’s in US such as aging parents or minor children
- Qualifying relative will not be able to continue their education
- Other hardship factors
Get Assistance from New Jersey Immigration Attorneys on Your Case
Only a lawyer can offer you legal advice regarding your I-601 application. If you have questions regarding what you need to do, what you're eligible for, and the most likely path to success for permanent residency, speak with the Law Offices of Lloyd E. Bennett, Esq., P.C. today. We provide initial consultations that answer all your questions regarding the green card application process. We review your personal records, criminal history, immigration history, and family history to determine all your options for permanent residency—and we put your green card application on the fastest and most effective path to success.
Our immigration firm in New Jersey hashelped over 10,000 individuals and businesses secure visas, green cards, citizenship, and much more since 1987. We have the tools, knowledge, and experience to give you the best possible chance of earning a pardon of unlawful presence in the United States. Our staff promises to keep you educated and informed about every step of the process, addressing your questions as quickly as they appear. Most importantly, we promise to offer you the insight and advice that gives your application the best possible chance of succeeding.
Call (800) 909-8129 or contact us online for your first appointment. Let's get started on your case immediately.
Experienced & Proven Success Since 1987
Personally Assisted Thousands of Individuals
Tens of Millions Recovered for Our Clients
Q:I am a fiancée of a us citizen living outside the us. How can I enter the us to marry?
A:Your fiancée must apply for a Fiancée Visa also known as the K-1 Visa. The visa is for parties who have physically met within the past two years, have an intent to marry and can document a relationship together. The visa is only for those who are residing abroad and cannot be used if the alien is in the US. The application is filed from within the US and when approved, will be forwarded to the American Consular where the alien fiancée will apply for the visa and be interviewed by an officer. Usually about 8-12 months from the date of filing.
Q:I live in the us and I am marrying a us citizen. How can I get a green card and become a permanent resident?
A:Assuming you have entered the US with a visa or are protected by an old law called 245i you may be eligible to adjust status to receive a green card from within the US. If you have been illegally present for more than 6 months you cannot travel until the green card is in hand. Current processing time is about 5-7 months.
Q:I live outside the us and I married a us citizen. How can I come to the us to live?
A:To enter the US after a marriage to a US Citizen you would go through Consular Processing. Paperwork would be filed in the US and forwarded to the embassy abroad to schedule and interview. The processing time frame from start to finish is between 9-11 months depending on the embassy abroad.