On January 3, 2013, the Department of Homeland Security published a regulation allowing immediate family members of U.S. citizens who entered the U.S. without inspection, or are otherwise ineligible to adjust their status in the U.S. due to unlawful presence, to apply for “form I-601A provisional waivers” in the United States. Once their waivers are approved by the USCIS, they will be eligible to attend their appointments for immigrant visas (green cards) in their countries of origin.
The aim of this new program, which became effective on March 4, 2013, is to avoid having spouses and sons and daughters of U.S. citizens be separated from their families for months or even years while their waivers are pending.
Now, these family members will obtain their waivers before departing the U.S., will be interviewed abroad, and will then return to their families in the U.S. within just a few days or weeks.
In our FAQ, we explain who is eligible to submit a provisional waiver, what happens if a person’s waiver is denied and how to qualify for this program if you in removal proceedings.