This link explains that the 601A waiver, previously only available for spouses and children of US Citizens, is now available for spouses and children of lawful permanent residents:
The 601A waiver allows for a relative to have their waiver for illegal presence approved in the US, before then travelling abroad to receive their residency visa and re-enter the US legally. Before the 2013 601A program, a 601 waiver had to applied for while waiting outside of the US. The 601A, now available for immediate relatives of residents and citizens, offers security and supports family unity, as they can wait here while the waiver process is pending, and choose to stay in the US if the wavier is denied. Before, a 601 waiver denial would mean a 3 or 10 year bar from returning to the US.
It is still very important to receive legal advice about this waiver, which is only helpful in certain cases, usually when there has been only one undocumented entrance after 1997. For example, this waiver does not help if someone has been present without documentation for more than a year after April 1, 1997, then left and come back without documentation again. A good case would be a spouse who has one undocumented entry, no criminal history, crossed the border alone, and takes care of his or her spouse financially or for medical reasons. This is because “extreme hardship” to the US Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident spouse or parent must be proven.
Unfortunately, many lawyers and document-preparers do not fully explain the risks of applying for this waiver and then leaving the country. Please feel free to set up a FREE consultation at Alford Law PLLC by calling (928) 607-1710.
Alford Law PLLC
I have seen a few examples of the Spanish-language media reporting things in an inflammatory way. Recently, people asked me about children being deported through raids of schools.
It is important to understand that the federal government is a fairly predictable actor. When I heard about this news story, I immediately had an idea about what was going on. Generally speaking, ICE does not raid any place except when there is a complaint of criminal activity or an order for deportation already exists for one or more people. In the case of the children, odds are they had already been ordered deported by an Immigration Judge, and ICE was merely getting around to enforcing that order.
The government is constantly trying to save money and allocate resources. At some point, they decided that it was “worth it” to begin enforcing the deportation orders against children. Generally speaking, no one needs to worry about being raided unless they have a deportation order against them or they are involved in criminal activity, which includes working without a permit using false documents.
If you have any questions about this, Alford Law offers free consultations in downtown Flagstaff, AZ. Our number is (928) 607-1710.
Firstly, let me share this link which provides almost all of the practical information one would need to decide if they had a U-Visa-eligible situation and how to apply:
http://www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/victims-human-trafficking-other-crimes/victims-criminal-activity-u-nonimmigrant-status/victims-criminal-activity-u-nonimmigrant-status#U Nonimmigrant Eligibility
In short, the U-Visa program allows for victims of qualifying crimes to apply for legal residency, either while in he US or from outside the US, if they are, have, or will be assisting law enforcement with an investigation of prosecution of the crime. For example, domestic violence is a qualifying crime. A victim of domestic violence can seek a signature from a law enforcement agency (either prosecutor or police, usually) to certify that they have been a victim and are helping with the prosecution. This person can then apply for the U-Visa through the mail.
Even if approved, an applicant may not receive a visa, as only 10,000 primary visas are issued each year. Even with a deferred status, though, an undocumented immigrant can remain in the US and receive work authorization and, for example, a drivers license in Arizona.
What I’d like to discuss, is how this program can cause some unintended consequences, such as spouses falsifying evidence against their spouse, in order to become eligible for this visa. This is merely one small part of this program but it is worth mentioning. For me, the solution to this would be simple, to train local police departments about this program. Ideally the suggestion to apply for this Visa would come from the police department or district attorney’s office.
As we wait for resolution in this case (Case: 15-40238 5th Circuit), it is a good time to reflect on what power the executive branch of the United States has in the immigration realm.
Probably the least-understood aspect of immigration enforcement and administrative law generally is policy memorandum. These papers explain the current emphasis of the administration in enforcement and are often an outline for legal advocacy.
These papers are read by government lawyers judges and guide their decision-making in closing, opening, prosecuting, and deciding cases. My first advice on this website would be to look at these papers to better understand immigration law in this country.
A 2014 Department of Homeland Security Memorandum can be found here: http://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/14_1120_memo_prosecutorial_discretion.pdf