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How does the proposed process of the Waiver of the 10 year bar differ from the old process?

Posted by attorney Brian Lerner

Currently, U.S. citizens who petition for their spouses and children to become legal

immigrants to the United States must petition for a visa, and in some circumstances, if the

spouse or child has accrued more than 180 days of unlawful presence in the U.S., that

spouse or child must also petition for a waiver of a ground of inadmissibility in order to

have his or her visa application processed. The proposed process does not change the

requirements for obtaining a visa or the standards for obtaining a waiver. Nor does it

change the requirement that the spouse or child of a U.S. citizen ultimately depart the

United States to have his or her visa application processed at a consulate abroad. The only

change contemplated by this proposal is that the spouse or child would be able to apply for

a waiver with USCIS in the U.S. and receive a provisional decision on that waiver before

departing the U.S. for consular processing of their immigrant visa applications. Currently,

applicants can only file for a waiver after having been determined inadmissible by the U.S.

consular officer and must wait abroad for a decision, which significantly adds to the

processing time for their case. The proposal limits the extent to which the process forces

the lengthy separation of families.

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Filed under: Immigrant visas