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Immigration Law

DHS Final Rule: Expansion of Provisional Unlawful Presence Waivers of Inadmissibility

Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 146 / Friday, July 29, 2016 - "This final rule, consistent with the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), expands the class of individuals who may be eligible for a provisional waiver of certain grounds of inadmissibility based on the accrual of unlawful presence in the United States. The provisional unlawful presence waiver (‘‘provisional waiver’’) process allows certain individuals who are present in the United States to request from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) a provisional waiver of these grounds of inadmissibility before departing the United States for consular processing of their immigrant visas - rather than applying for a waiver abroad after their immigrant visa interviews using the Form I–601, Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility (‘‘Form I–601 waiver process’’). The provisional waiver process is designed to encourage unlawfully present individuals to leave the United States, attend their immigrant visa interviews, and return to the United States legally to reunite with their U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident (LPR) family members. Having an approved provisional waiver helps facilitate immigrant visa issuance at DOS, streamlines both the waiver and the immigrant visa processes, and reduces the time that applicants are separated from their U.S. citizen or LPR family members, thus promoting family unity. The rule is intended to encourage eligible individuals to complete the immigrant visa process abroad, promote family unity, and improve administrative efficiency. DATES: This final rule is effective August 29, 2016."