After an illegal immigrant has been granted a voluntary departure, how long does he have to wait before applying for a new visa.

Asked about 2 years ago - Lutz, FL

I am a US citizen, and I am trying to bring my dad back to the US. he came in 2002 and returned to Peru in 2004 with a voluntary departure. At the interview with the US embassy in Peru, he was told that he has to wait 10 years before a visa can be granted. Is this the law even though he was never deported? And why USCIS and NVC approved this case instead of telling me that he is ineligible because of the 10 years frame? I called USCIS and they told me that it is at the US consulate (in Peru) discretion.

Attorney answers (5)

  1. Steven Sahag Vosbikian

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    Contributor Level 15

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    Answered . The question is whether your father generated more than one year of unlawful presence in the United States.

    If an alien:
    1) generates one year or more of unlawful presence (i.e. remained in the United States one-year after the expiration of his visa) and;

    2) that alien thereafter departs the United States (leaving on voluntary departure qualifies as "departing from the United States"), that person in statutorily illegible for the issuance of a visa for a period dog ten years.

    The ten year bar can be "waived" in certain circumstances where a qualifying U.S. citizen relative is able to establish extreme hardship.

    I advise consulting with an experienced immigration attorney.

    VOSBIKIAN & VOSBIKIAN, L.L.C. (856) 755-1400, e-mail: ssvosbikian@voslaw.com - Offices in Atlantic City, Cherry... more
  2. Karen-Lee Pollak

    Contributor Level 19

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    Answered . i agree with my colleague

  3. Deborah Lynne Karapetian

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

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    Answered . I think the Embassy said that because he was unlawfully present here before he took the voluntary departure. They are two different things.

  4. Kyndra L. Mulder

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . He will need a waiver.

    Kyndra L. Mulder, Esquire
    The Mulder Law Office, P.A.
    4110 Southpoint Blvd., Suite 101
    Jacksonville, Florida 32216

    (904) 296-7702
    www.MULDERLAWOFFICE.com
    immigration@mulderlawoffice.com

  5. J Charles Ferrari

    Contributor Level 20

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    Answered . They can apply at any time. However, issuance of a visa is at the sole discretion of the consular officer.

    J Charles Ferrari Eng & Nishimura 213.622.2255 The statement above is general in nature and does not... more

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