Biden-Harris Executive Order to Maintain Immigrant Families

The Biden-Harris administration has created an executive action that will prevent eligible undocumented spouses and children of US citizens from being forced out of the country. Currently, for some noncitizens, when they apply for lawful permanent residence through marriage to a U.S. citizen, many have to leave the United States and wait for their application to be processed while they are separated from their U.S. citizen family. This creates undue hardship on the families involved, as the period of separation does not have a definite duration and many families suffer due to the uncertainty of the process.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had announced a new process following the executive action that will allow them to consider requests, on a case-by-case basis, for some noncitizen spouses of U.S. citizens who meet the criteria that will allow them to apply for lawful permanent residency without having to leave the United States during its pending process. In order for your petition to be considered, you must qualify under the eligibility requirements for this process:

  • Be present in the United States without admission or parole;
  • Have been continuously present in the United States for at least 10 years as of June 17, 2024;
  • Have a legally valid marriage to a U.S. citizen as of June 17, 2024; and
  • Have no disqualifying criminal history or otherwise constitute a threat to national security or public safety

USCIS will release more information later in the summer that provides specific information regarding requirements, fees, and dates as to when they will begin to accept applications for this process. At this moment, this process has not gone into effect. While it is progress for noncitizens to be able to obtain residency without the uncertainty of having to leave to country to continue the process, this is not a process that will go into effect immediately. As mentioned previously, USCIS will be releasing more information regarding the specific requirements and when this process can expect to be implemented in the future.

If you would like to speak with an attorney to see if you may qualify for this new process and how this could impact you, please contact our office to set up an appointment with one of our attorneys.

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