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Workload Transfer within Service Center Operations

USCIS recently made two operational changes to balance our overall workload.

Workload Realignment

USCIS recently began transferring some Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, cases filed by lawful permanent residents for their eligible family members from the Vermont Service Center to the California Service Center.

If your case was transferred, USCIS will send you a notice listing the transfer date and where your case will be processed. Your original receipt number will not change and this will not delay the processing of your cases except for the additional time needed to transfer the file.

Effective March 27, 2015, USCIS will transfer the adjudication of some cases to balance our overall workload. The affected cases include those filed with the following forms:

  • I-129F, Petition for Alien Fiancé(e)
  • I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker
  • I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (employment and asylum-based only)
  • I-821D/I-765, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals/ Application for Employment Authorization (initial and renewal requests)

The filing location and instructions for these forms will not change. Please continue to file the forms at the address noted on the form instructions and on the USCIS website at www.uscis.gov.

How to Track the Status of Your Case

You can check your case status at Case Status Online by entering your receipt number. You can also sign up to receive automatic case status updates by email.

You can ask us about the status of your case if you do not receive a decision within the published processing time. You may submit an inquiry using e-Request or call the National Customer Service Center (NCSC) at 1-800-375-5283. For TDD hearing-impaired assistance, please call 1-800-767-1833. When asking about your case status, tell us your original receipt number and also say that your case was transferred to a new location.

If we send you any notice (such as a request for evidence), please read the notice carefully and follow the instructions provided.

If you move while your case is pending, you must inform USCIS of your address change. You may do so online or by calling the NCSC. It is important that you notify us of any address change as soon as possible, so that you continue to receive notifications from USCIS.

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USCIS Posts Updated L-1B Adjudications Policy for Public Feedback

WASHINGTON—U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director León Rodríguez today announced the release of an updated policy memorandum on the L-1B nonimmigrant visa classification for workers with specialized knowledge. The memorandum, which clarifies for USCIS officers how L-1B petitioners may demonstrate that an employee has specialized knowledge, will be posted on-line for a 45-day public feedback period.  The memorandum will go into effect on August 31, 2015. 

“This policy memorandum, once it goes into effect, will help companies in the United States better use the skills of talented employees in the global marketplace,” said Rodríguez. “These changes maintain the integrity of the L-1B program while recognizing the fluid dynamics of the 21st century business world. We listened to the concerns of our partners to develop this policy and look forward to the public’s feedback.”

Issuing a final policy memorandum on L-1B adjudications is one of the executive actions on immigration that President Obama announced in November 2014. Release of the memorandum is part of the Administration’s effort to modernize, improve and clarify visa programs to grow the U.S. economy and create jobs.

The policy memorandum consolidates previous guidance and provides updated guidance to USCIS officers in adjudicating petitions filed by employers seeking to transfer employees to the United States. Employees who work in any industry and serve in any type of position may be classified as L-1B nonimmigrants, so long as the position described in the L-1B petition requires specialized knowledge. 

Officers make the adjudications on a case-by-case assessment, based on the totality of the circumstances and a preponderance of the evidence presented.

For more information on USCIS policies and programs, visit uscis.gov. Follow us on Facebook (/uscis), Twitter (@uscis), YouTube (/uscis) and the USCIS blog The Beacon.

 

 

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I-407, Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status

Purpose of Form

Use Form I-407 to let us know that you have decided voluntarily to abandon your status as a lawful permanent resident of the United States. We will then update your records to show that you are no longer an LPR.

Number of Pages

Form 2; Instructions 3

Edition Date

2/26/2015

Where to File

In a location with a USCIS international field office: Submit Form I-407 in person or by mail to that office. Find locations at www.uscis.gov/international.

In other locations: Mail Form I-407 to the nearest USCIS international field office or submit it in person at a U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate. You may also submit Form I-407 to a Customs and Border Protection officer at a U.S. port of entry.

Filing Fee

There is no filing fee.

Special Instructions

  • There are eight spaces for your A-number. If your A-number is only seven digits, place a zero (0) as the first digit.
  • If the lawful permanent resident is under 18 years old, the minor’s parents, custodial parents or legal guardians must sign and consent to submitting Form I-407.
  • If there is only one legal parent, that parent can sign Form I-407. However, that parent must submit proof:
    • 1) Of having sole legal custody; or,
    • 2) Showing that any other parent has either died or had his or her parental rights legally terminated.
  • A guardian must submit documentation showing that the guardian has legal custody or other authority to sign for the minor.
  • The Department of Homeland Security is required to provide the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) with the names of individuals who choose to abandon their LPR status. If you file this form with us, we will provide only your name and the filing date to the IRS. (Internal Revenue Code section 6039G(d)(3))
Last Reviewed/Updated: 03/23/2015
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New Version of Form I-407 Now Available

USCIS has published a new edition of USCIS Form I-407, Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Status (OMB No. 1615-0130). You can download the form on our website.

You may begin using the revised Form I-407, Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status today. The current edition is dated 02/26/2015, and we will not accept previous form editions.

About Form I-407

 Form I-407 allows you to formally record with USCIS your decision to voluntarily abandon your status as a lawful permanent resident (LPR) of the United States. Use of the form also ensures you are informed of the right to a hearing before an immigration judge and that you have knowingly, willingly, and affirmatively waived that right. There is no filing fee.

The Department of Homeland Security is required to provide to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) the names of individuals who choose to abandon their LPR status. If you file this form with us, we will provide only your name and the filing date to the IRS.

Where to File

In a location with a USCIS international field office: Submit Form I-407 in person or by mail to that office. Find locations at International Immigration Offices.

In other locations: Mail Form I-407 to the nearest USCIS international field office or submit it in person at a U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate. You may also submit Form I-407 to a Customs and Border Protection officer at a U.S. port of entry.

To learn more about where to file, visit www.uscis.gov/i-407.

 

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Central American Minors (CAM) Refugee/Parole Program

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), in coordination with the U.S. Department of State (DOS), invites you to participate in a teleconference on Tuesday, March 31, from 2 to 3:30 p.m. (Eastern) to learn more about the Central American Minors (CAM) Refugee/Parole Program. The program provides certain children in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras  with a safe, legal, and orderly alternative to the dangerous journey that some children are undertaking to the United States.

The CAM program began accepting applications from qualifying parents in the U.S. for their children on December 1, 2014. Only certain qualifying parents who are legally present in the U.S. are eligible to file for their children. Each qualified child must be unmarried, under the age of 21, and residing in El Salvador, Guatemala or Honduras. In certain cases, the in-country parent of the qualifying child may also qualify for access if the in-country parent is the legal spouse of the qualifying parent in the U.S.

During this teleconference, representative from USCIS and DOS will provide an overview of the CAM program and answer questions.

To Join the Session by Phone
On the day of the session, please use the information below to join the teleconference. We recommend that you call 10-15 minutes before the start time.

Toll-free call-in number: 1-888-606-7035

Passcode: CAM

Note to Media: This engagement is not for press purposes. Please contact the USCIS Press Office at (202) 272-1200 for any media inquiries.

If you have any questions, please email us at Public.Engagement@uscis.dhs.gov.


We look forward to engaging with you!
 

Meeting invitation

 

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District Court Grants DOL Motion Concerning H-2B Program

On March 18, the federal district court in the Northern District of Florida granted a motion filed by the Department of Labor (DOL) effectively permitting DOL to restart its issuance of temporary labor certifications under the H-2B visa program through April 15, 2015. 

On March 4, the Court vacated DOL’s 2008 H-2B regulations on the grounds that DOL lacks authority to issue regulations in the H-2B program.  DOL and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) are working expeditiously to promulgate a rule by next month to minimize future interruption to the H-2B program. 

Effective immediately, DOL will begin processing labor certification applications under the 2008 rule and will continue to do so through April 15th, in accordance with the stay granted by the court.  DHS has resumed processing of H-2B petitions but will continue to suspend premium processing until further notice.

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USCIS Resumes H-2B Adjudications; Premium Processing Remains Suspended

Today, March 17, 2015, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will resume adjudications of H-2B petitions, but will continue to suspend premium processing until further notice. 

Monday, March 16, 2015 the Department of Labor (DOL) filed an unopposed motion to stay the March 4 order of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida in Perez v. Perez until April 15.  That order vacated DOL's H-2B regulations on the grounds that DOL had no authority under the Immigration and Nationality Act to issue them. 

DHS suspended H-2B adjudications while it reviewed the decision. As stated in the motion, DHS will resume adjudicating H-2B petitions based on temporary labor certifications issued by the Department of Labor. 

To fill the regulatory gap, DOL and DHS announced on Friday, March 13, that they intend to issue a joint interim final rule by April 30, 2015. 

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FACT SHEET: Haitian Family Reunification Parole Program

Fact Sheet

Haitian Family Reunification Parole Program

The HFRP Program offers certain beneficiaries of approved family-based immigration petitions (Forms I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, the opportunity to be reunited with family in the United States up to approximately two years before their immigrant visas are expected to become available. Approved beneficiaries will enter the United States as parolees, but will apply for lawful permanent resident (LPR) status once their immigrant visas become available.

Eligibility to Apply

The Department of State’s National Visa Center (NVC) will issue invitations to U.S. citizens or LPRs who filed Forms I-130 for Haitian family members that were approved on or before December 18, 2014, and for which immigrant visas are expected to be available approximately within 18 – 30 months from the date of the invitation. Only U.S. petitioners who receive invitations from the NVC will be eligible to apply for the HFRP Program. The NVC will begin issuing invitations to eligible U.S. petitioners beginning in mid-March 2015. Invitations will be issued at least once per year.

U.S. petitioners should make sure that the NVC has their current mailing addresses. Petitioners can update their addresses with the NVC using the Public Inquiry Form found on the Department of State website at http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/contact/ask-nvc.html.

Eligibility for Parole

USCIS will grant parole on a case-by-case basis. Only beneficiaries who are interviewed in Haiti and would qualify for an immigrant visa if an immigrant visa were immediately available, will qualify for parole. Derivative children* who are 21 years of age or older at the time the U.S. petitioner properly files for the HFRP Program will not be eligible for consideration. USCIS will consider for parole any derivative children who are under 21 years of age on the date that a qualified petitioner properly files an HFRP Program application with USCIS on the child’s behalf.  

*A Principal Beneficiary is the relative for whom the petitioner filed the underlying approved Form I-130. Derivative Beneficiaries are the spouses and unmarried children under 21 of that Principal Beneficiary. The NVC Invitation Letter will indicate who is considered to be the Principal Beneficiary and who is considered a Derivative Beneficiary.

Applying to the HFRP Program

To apply to the HFRP Program on behalf of Haitian family members, petitioners who have received an invitation letter from the NVC must file a parole application (Form I-131, Application for Travel Document), along with the required fee (or fee waiver request), and a Form I-134, Affidavit of Support, for each relative they wish to have considered for parole. Petitioners must file for all eligible relatives associated with the same underlying Form I-130 at the same time, meaning that they will need to file any applications for Derivative Beneficiaries at the same time as the application for the Principal Beneficiary. If a petitioner does not apply for the Principal Beneficiary of the Form I-130, USCIS will not consider the associated Derivative Beneficiaries under the HFRP Program. 

An application deadline will be provided in the invitation letter from the NVC.  Generally, petitioners will be given six (6) months from the date of the invitation to submit their application(s).

Costs

The current fee for filing a Form I-131 is $360, although a petitioner may request a fee waiver by filing the Form I-912, Request for Fee Waiver. Petitioners and/or beneficiaries will also be required to cover all costs associated with attending an interview in Port-au-Prince, including the completion of a medical examination and travel to the United States.

Beneficiary Interview Required

An interview is required for all program beneficiaries before parole may be authorized. Although a USCIS Service Center may conditionally approve a Form I-131 application, final approval of the application will require an in-person interview with a USCIS officer at the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince. The NVC will schedule HFRP Program interviews and will notify both the petitioner in the United States and the beneficiary in Haiti of the date and time of interview. Petitioners should not attempt to schedule an appointment directly with USCIS or the U.S. Embassy. 

If Travel is Approved

USCIS will issue the necessary travel documents to the beneficiary, who must pay for his or her travel to the United States. Once at the port of entry, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer will inspect the beneficiary, review the documents and, assuming all is in order, parole the beneficiary into the United States. The beneficiary will be issued an electronic Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, documenting his or her parole into the United States.

Initial Period of Parole

Beneficiaries approved under the HFRP Program will be paroled into the United States for an initial period of three (3) years, giving them time to apply for LPR status once their immigrant visas become available, which is expected to be within two years of being paroled into the United States.

Eligibility for Work Authorization

Parolees will be lawfully present in the United States. Once in the United States, they will be eligible to apply for work authorization by filing the Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, and submitting the appropriate fee, which is currently $380.

What it Means to be In Parole Status

Parole allows an individual to be lawfully present in the United States and to apply for work authorization. Parole itself does not confer any legal immigration status in the United States. However, HFRP Program beneficiaries paroled into the U.S. are expected to apply for lawful permanent resident status as soon as their immigrant visas become available—generally within two years of parole into the United States.

Public Benefits Eligibility

Once paroled into the United States, HFRP Program beneficiaries will meet the definition of Cuban/Haitian entrants under section 501(e)(1) of the Refugee Education and Assistance Act of 1980, as amended, and will be “qualified aliens” for the purposes of public benefits eligibility.  

Adjustment of Status

Beneficiaries will be expected to apply for adjustment of status as soon as their immigrant visas become available, which is expected to be within two years of their parole into the United States. If visas have not become available at the time their initial parole authorization expires, HFRP Program beneficiaries will have to apply for re-parole if they are to remain lawfully present in the United States.  

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What You Need to Know About Applying for the HFRP Program

The Haitian Family Reunification Parole (HFRP) Program allows certain eligible U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents (LPRs) to apply for parole for their family members in Haiti.

If approved for parole, your family members in Haiti will be able to:

  • Reunite with family members in the United States up to two approximately years before their immigrant visas become available, and
  • Apply for work authorization.

This page provides additional information on:

Please see Arriving in the United States Under the HFRP Program for additional information on eligibility for a Green Card, work authorization, and certain benefits, once an HFRP Program beneficiary is paroled into the United States.

Information is also available on The Haitian Family Reunification Parole (HFRP) Program Web page.

Program Eligibility

Participants in the HFRP Program include:

Term

Definition

Petitioners

The U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident in the United States who has filed a Petition for Alien Relative (Form I-130) on behalf of a relative living in Haiti, and had such Form I-130 approved.

 

Only qualified petitioners can file applications for benefits under the HFRP Program. Qualified petitioners must meet the eligibility requirements for petitioners.

Beneficiaries

Family members in Haiti who may benefit from the relative petitions (Forms I-130) filed on their behalf, and who may be paroled into the United States if approved under the HFRP Program.

 

Beneficiaries include the Principal Beneficiary, Derivative Beneficiaries and Add-On Derivative Beneficiaries.

Principal Beneficiary

The family member for whom the petitioner filed the Form I-130.

 

For example, the Principal Beneficiary could be an LPR’s spouse or child, or the adult son, daughter, or sibling of a U.S. citizen.

Derivative Beneficiaries

The Principal Beneficiary’s spouse and unmarried children under age 21. They may also be listed on the approved Form I-130.

 

These beneficiaries are eligible for parole based on their relationship to the Principal Beneficiary. If the Principal Beneficiary is not approved for parole, the Derivative Beneficiaries will not be approved.

 

Add-On Derivative Beneficiary

If a Principal Beneficiary has married or has had a child since the underlying Form I-130 was approved, you may file an HFRP Program application on behalf of that Principal Beneficiary’s spouse and/or child under 21.

Eligibility requirements are outlined under “Who is Eligible to Apply” on this page and can also be found on The Haitian Family Reunification Parole (HFRP) Program Web page.

Who is Eligible to Apply

If you filed a Form I-130 for your relative, you are known as the petitioner and your relative is known as the beneficiary. To be eligible to apply for the parole of your qualifying relative(s) in Haiti, you must meet the following requirements:

  • You are either a U.S. citizen or LPR;
  • You filed a Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, for a Haitian family member and it was approved on or before December 18, 2014;
  • An immigrant visa is not yet available for your relative; and
  • You received an invitation from the Department of State’s National Visa Center (NVC) to participate in the HFRP Program. Please see the “Invitation Process” section on this page for more information.

Note: We will deny your application(s) if you do not meet all of the above requirements at the time the application for HFRP benefits is adjudicated. There will be no refund of any fees submitted with the application(s).

A qualified petitioner will only be able to apply on behalf of a family member (beneficiary) who meets the following criteria:

  • Is a Haitian national; and
  • Is the beneficiary of a Form I-130 that was approved on or before December 18, 2014 (including any accompanying or following to join spouse or child*).

*See section 203(d) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 United States Code (U.S.C.) 1153(d).

Who is Not Eligible

Participation in the HFRP Program will not be available to:

  • Individuals who qualify as immediate relatives.** Immediate relatives are:
  • Spouses of U.S. citizens,
  • Unmarried children under 21 years of age of U.S. citizens, and
  • Parents of U.S. citizens over 21 years of age.

Parole will not be available for these individuals since they may seek immigrant visas for travel to the United States once their Forms I-130 are approved;

  • Haitian nationals who are not able to attend an in-person interview in Haiti. Implementation of this program is only being established in Haiti;
  • Beneficiaries of Forms I-130 that were approved after December 18, 2014; and
  • Beneficiaries of approved Forms I-130 whose petitioning relatives in the United States have not received an invitation from the NVC indicating that they are eligible to apply for the HFRP Program.

 

**See INA § 201(b)(2)(A)(i), 8 U.S.C. § 1151(b)(2)(A)(i).

 

Note: If you are the beneficiary of an approved Form I-130 living in Haiti, you cannot apply to the HFRP program for yourself or your family members. Your U.S. petitioner must file on your behalf.

Spouses and Children of the Principal Beneficiary (Derivative Beneficiaries)

If the Principal Beneficiary’s spouse and unmarried children under age 21 (known as Derivative Beneficiaries) are named on the approved Form I-130, they may be eligible for benefits under the HFRP Program. Any parole request filed on their behalf must be filed at the same time that the parole request is filed for the Principal Beneficiary. They will only be eligible for parole if the Principal Beneficiary is found eligible for parole, and they also will independently need to establish that they are admissible to the United States.

If an HFRP Program application is not filed for the Principal Beneficiary, or if we determine that the Principal Beneficiary is not eligible for the HFRP Program, his or her spouse and children will not be eligible for parole under the HFRP Program.

Requesting the Addition of a Spouse or Child to an Approved Form I-130 (Add-on Derivative Beneficiaries)

 If a Principal Beneficiary has married or has had a child since the underlying Form I-130 was approved, you may file an HFRP Program application on behalf of that Principal Beneficiary’s spouse and/or child under 21 (often referred to as “add-on” derivatives).

Although add-on derivatives will not be listed on the NVC’s Invitation Letter, a qualified petitioner may still file an HFRP Program application on their behalf, as long as the add-on applications are received with the application packet filed for the Principal Beneficiary and you, the petitioner, provides the necessary evidence to establish the qualifying relationship of the add-on derivative relative.

Age Limit for Beneficiaries

There is no age limit for Principal Beneficiaries of Forms I-130. However, any derivative children must be under the age of 21 on the date that we receive your properly filed application. The Invitation Letter will advise you not to file HFRP Program applications for derivative children who will be 21 years of age or older when the application is filed.

Forms I-131 submitted for derivative children 21 years of age or older on the date we receive the properly filed application will be denied. We will not return the associated filing fees.

We will continue to process the applications for any other beneficiaries, including the Principal Beneficiary and his or her spouse and unmarried children under 21.

Circumstances that Could Affect Eligibility

 

 

 Haitians Living Outside Haiti

 

While the HFRP Program is intended for Haitians in Haiti, Haitians who are living outside of Haiti are not precluded from accessing the program. If the beneficiary is in the United States or another country, the beneficiary must travel to Haiti for an HFRP Program interview in order to be considered for parole.

 

Beneficiaries in the United States, including those in TPS status, who decide to travel to Haiti for interview, should first obtain advance parole from USCIS. Without advance parole, they may not be able to return to the United States if their HFRP Program applications are denied.

 

If the Principal Beneficiary is in the United States or another country and will not return to Haiti for interview under the HFRP Program, you should not file for the Principal Beneficiary’s derivative relatives in Haiti as these applications will be denied. Derivative family members can only be approved for parole if the Principal Beneficiary on the approved Form I-130 is approved for parole.

 

 

Becoming a U.S. Citizen

 

If you are an LPR and become a U.S. citizen after you have properly filed your HFRP Program application(s) with USCIS, you may choose to have your “immediate relatives” continue to be processed for parole. Alternatively, you may choose to have them processed for immigrant visas after payment of all applicable immigrant visa fees.

 

If you become a U.S. citizen before you apply for the HFRP Program, any applications filed on behalf of “immediate relatives” will be denied.

 

Marriage

 

A change in the marital status of a Form I-130 beneficiary relative could affect your relative’s eligibility for the HFRP Program.

 

Relatives who are not eligible for the HFRP Program if they are married include:

  • A child for whom you filed a Form I-130 under the second family-based preference. If your child has married since we approved the Form I-130, he or she is no longer a child under the INA*** and is, therefore, not eligible to benefit from the visa petition. The second preference is available to LPRs who wish to bring spouses and unmarried children to the United States, regardless of the age of the children.

 

  • A child of the Principal Beneficiary for whom you filed the Form I-130, otherwise known as a derivative child. If the child has married since the Form I-130 was approved, he or she is no longer a child under the INA*** even if under 21 years of age, and may not derive status from the Principal Beneficiary.

 

***Section 101(b)(1) of the INA defines a child as “an unmarried person under 21 years of age.”

 

Invitation Process

If you are eligible to apply for the program on behalf of your relatives in Haiti, you will receive an Invitation Letter from the NVC. The invitation will be mailed to the last address that the NVC has for you. You must receive notification from the NVC of your eligibility to apply for the HFRP Program before you may do so.

The number of invitations sent each year depends on the number of beneficiaries whose visas are expected to be available within 18 – 30 months from the date the invitations are sent. The number of invitations sent each year may be limited based on U.S. government operational capacity in Haiti and the availability of U.S. government resources to aid program beneficiaries.

At the time the first HFRP Program invitations are issued in March 2015, approximately 7,350 individuals (Principal Beneficiaries and derivatives) meet the program parameters, and all the petitioners for these individuals will receive invitations to apply.

Note: If you are a petitioner who believes that you may be eligible for the HFRP Program, please make sure that the NVC has your current mailing address. You can contact the NVC through their Public Inquiry Form. If your attorney of record is no longer representing you, please inform the NVC.

 

How Invitations Are Issued

Under the HFRP Program, the NVC will issue written invitations to petitioners of approved Forms I-130 based on the date when the immigrant visas for their family members are expected to become current. Each year the NVC will identify approved Forms I-130 with filing dates (priority dates) that are expected to become current in approximately 18 – 30 months.

The NVC will issue invitations to U.S. petitioners (and/or attorneys of record) in group mailings at least once a year.

You will not be invited to apply for the HFRP Program this year if:

  • You have less than 18 months to wait before your family members are expected to receive their immigrant visas because it is likely that they will be able to immigrate to the United States almost as quickly through traditional immigrant visa processing.

 

For example, your spouse in Haiti would not be eligible for an invitation now if:

  • He or she is the beneficiary of a Form I-130 that was approved before the HFRP program’s announcement, and
  • His or her visa is expected to become available within seven (7) months.
  • Your family members’ immigrant visas will not become available for more than 30 months, two (2) years and six (6) months.

For example, your sister in Haiti would not be eligible for an invitation now if:

  • She is the beneficiary of a Form I-130 that was approved before the HFRP program’s announcement, and
  • Her visa will not become available for four (4) years.

However, she may be eligible for an invitation once her visa priority date is within 18 – 30 months.

 

Applying for the HFRP Program

While the HFRP Program offers the potential for your family members to join you in the United States without waiting for their immigrant visas to become available, the program is not right for everyone.

Before applying on behalf of your relatives, please consider the information below:

  • We cannot predict how much faster you may be reunited with your family under the HFRP Program versus under the immigrant visa process. How quickly your relative joins you in the United States will depend on such factors as how soon his or her visa will be available, how quickly you apply for the HFRP Program on his or her behalf, whether we require additional information from you to establish his or her eligibility for the program, and how soon your relative travels to the United States after approval.
  • An individual paroled into the United States under the HFRP Program will be expected to apply for LPR status (a Green Card) once his or her visa becomes current (meaning available). We anticipate that visas for HFRP Program beneficiaries will become current within about two years after they are paroled into the United States. In order to apply for a Green Card, each beneficiary (whether a principal beneficiary or a derivative beneficiary) must file a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Resident or Adjust Status. The fee for this form is currently $1,070 and no fee waiver is available. As fees are subject to change, you should check the USCIS fee schedule before filing any petition or application.
  • Petitioners will be required to file HFRP Program applications for all family members associated with the same underlying approved Form I-130 at the same time. Derivative Beneficiaries on the Form I-130 will only be considered for parole under the HFRP Program if the Principal Beneficiary on the Form I-130 is approved for parole. Derivative Beneficiaries are not eligible for the HFRP Program on their own and any Form I-131 applications you file on their behalf will be denied if the Principal Beneficiary is not approved for parole.
  • Derivative children listed on the approved Form I-130 who are already or who will be 21 years of age or older before you properly file an HFRP Program application with USCIS will not be eligible for the HFRP Program. The date an application is considered filed is the date that it is received by the USCIS office listed on the NVC Invitation Letter. If you file an application on behalf of a derivate child and we receive it after the child has turned 21 years of age, we will deny your application.
  • Applying for the HFRP Program may not provide faster family reunification for LPR petitioners who expect to naturalize within a year. Once LPRs become U.S. citizens, immigrant visas for their spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age will be immediately available. Therefore, even if they have been invited to apply to the HFRP Program, LPRs who are close to becoming U.S. citizens should not submit their Form I-131 applications without first carefully weighing the costs and benefits of the HFRP Program versus immigrant visa processing.

How to Apply

Note: If you lose the written invitation the NVC sent you, we will still accept your application packet. However, you must submit all other required documentation when you file your application packet with the USCIS Lockbox.

You cannot apply to the HFRP Program until you receive an invitation from the NVC to do so. If you apply for the program and are not eligible to do so, your application(s) will be denied. Filing fees will not be returned to you.

If you wish to have your relatives considered for the HFRP Program, you must follow the HFRP Program-specific application instructions in the NVC letter (also listed below) and submit the required documentation to the Lockbox by the filing deadline indicated in the letter:

  1. Complete Form I-131, Application for Travel Document:

Complete a Form I-131 for each family member eligible to participate in the HFRP Program.

  • Complete parts 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9 of Form I-131;
  • Under Part 2, Application Type, check box 1.F, I am applying for an Advance Parole Document for a person who is outside the United States;
  • Include two passport-style photos of the family member;
  • Include applicable fee or fee waiver request; and
  • Include a photocopy of your Form I-797, Notice of Action, Form I-130 approval notice.
  1. Complete Form I-134, Affidavit of Support:

Complete a Form I-134 for each family member. (Follow the form instructions provided on the Form I-134 Web page.

  1. Include a copy of the NVC Invitation Letter:

Include a photocopy of the NVC letter, which notified you of your eligibility to apply for the HFRP Program on behalf of your beneficiaries.

  1. Submit the required fee (or a fee waiver request). Applicants may request a fee waiver by submitting Form I-912, Request for Fee Waiver. For instructions, please see USCIS’s Fee Waiver Guidance.

Note: You must submit a separate Form I-131 and a separate Form I-134 for each relative you wish to have considered for parole under the HFRP Program. You must also pay any applicable fees for each application or request a fee waiver.

Submitting Your Application Packet

You must file for all eligible relatives associated with the same underlying approved Form I-130 at the same time so that they can be processed together. All applications and associated supporting documents, including filing fees or a fee waiver request must be submitted together in one package to this address:

USCIS

PO Box 8500

Chicago, IL 60680-4120

Failure to submit them together may impact our ability to determine their program eligibility and may result in the denial of all or some of the related applications.

You cannot file your application electronically through USCIS ELIS at this time. You must mail your application to the location indicated on the Invitation Letter.

Deadline for Applying

The application deadline will be included in the invitation from the NVC. Generally, petitioners invited to apply for the HFRP Program will be given six (6) months from the date of the NVC Invitation Letter to do so. The reason for the deadline is that the benefits of HFRP are time sensitive; in order to gain the benefit of faster family reunification, applications for this program must be filed timely.

Costs

You must pay the Form I-131, Application for Travel Document, filing fee(s), currently $360, for each HFRP application you submit for a family member, or obtain a fee waiver. As fees are subject to change, you should check the USCIS fee schedule before filing any petition or application. You must also cover all costs associated with attending an interview in Port-au-Prince, including completion of a medical examination and travel to the United States.

Processing Your Application

After you file your application at the USCIS Lockbox, the application package will be forwarded to a USCIS service center for adjudication. The service center will verify that the application was filed by a qualified petitioner, meaning you received an invitation to apply to the program. In addition, the service center will review the documentation submitted and determine whether the beneficiary may be qualified for parole. The service center may request additional evidence, deny, or conditionally approve your application.

     

If the service center conditionally approves your application, it will be forwarded to the NVC, which will notify you within 60 days of its receipt of the case.

If we deny the Form I-131 you filed under the HFRP Program, the decision is final. However, a beneficiary whose Form I-131 was denied by USCIS may still be eligible for immigrant visa processing based on the approved Forms I-130 filed on their behalf. When the individual’s immigrant visa becomes available, he or she can contact the NVC to begin the process of applying for an immigrant visa.

It may take approximately six (6) months to process an HFRP application from the time we receive your application to issuance of a travel document. The time required to reach a decision on a case will vary depending on the issues raised and whether we require additional evidence.

Request for Evidence

If the service center finds that an application lacks required evidence or that additional evidence or information is required, the service center will send you a Request for Evidence (RFE). You must provide the evidence requested by the RFE, or establish that the evidence is not available and submit secondary evidence in its place. Your application may be denied if you do not respond to the RFE within the required time frame.

Interview

Note: Appointments are scheduled by the NVC. Please do not try to schedule an appointment directly with the USCIS Field Office and the U.S. Embassy in Port-au-Prince.

The NVC will contact you and the Principal Beneficiary regarding any additional documentary requirements and the scheduling of an interview for the beneficiary. On the date of interview, USCIS Port-au-Prince will interview the Principal Beneficiary and Derivative Beneficiaries to verify their identities and confirm their eligibility for parole under the HFRP Program.

If you forget the date of your family member’s interview, you may contact the NVC through their Public Inquiry Form.

Preparing for the Interview

The grant of parole is not automatic. We will use our discretion to grant parole on a case-by-cases basis. We will only grant parole to beneficiaries who meet the HFRP eligibility requirements and also:

This includes:

  • Passing criminal and national security background checks;
  • Passing a medical exam; and
  • Being admissible to the United States.

On the date of their interview, beneficiaries should bring:

  • A government-issued form of identification;
  • Passport;
  • Original civil documents supporting their eligibility for the program, in addition to certified English translations of these documents;
  • Medical examination results; and
  • A copy of their interview schedule appointment notice.

These documents must be presented to the officer for review on the date of interview. The interview appointment notice you received from the NVC will contain additional information on the documentation needed and instructions on obtaining the medical exam.

Post-Interview Process

Note: Beneficiaries should NOT take any permanent actions—such as selling or buying property, terminating employment, or withdrawing from school—until they have their HFRP parole travel document in their hands.

If travel is approved:

  • U.S. Embassy staff will issue the necessary travel documents to the beneficiary in Haiti. These travel documents will enable the beneficiary to travel to the United States and request parole from a U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer at a port of entry.
  • Beneficiaries traveling to the United States under the HFRP Program must arrange and pay for their own travel.

If travel is not approved:

  • USCIS Port-au-Prince will send a written notification to beneficiaries who have not been approved for travel to the United States. You, as the petitioner, will also receive written notification of the decision.

If USCIS Denies Parole

  • Our decision to deny parole is final, and there is no right of appeal.
  • A beneficiary whose parole we have denied may still be eligible for immigrant visa processing based on the approved Form I-130 filed on his or her behalf. If the beneficiary is still eligible to apply for an immigrant visa, the beneficiary may do so when his or her immigrant visa becomes available.
  • In certain circumstances, the reason that parole was denied may also cause us to revoke the approval of the beneficiary’s underlying Form I-130. If the Form I-130’s approval is revoked, the beneficiary will no longer be eligible for an immigrant visa. Such determinations will be made by USCIS on a case-by-case basis.  

Humanitarian Parole

Individuals in Haiti who are not eligible for the HFRP Program and who have urgent humanitarian reasons to come to the United States, may be eligible to apply for parole under the standard parole process. For example, there may be some circumstances in which a particularly vulnerable family member left behind in Haiti may have urgent humanitarian reasons to join a family member in the United States.

Information on how to apply for parole through the standard parole process can be found on our Humanitarian Parole Web page. In the coming months, we will be adding more information on our website about the humanitarian parole program, so please look out for that information.

Protecting Yourself from Fraud

As you begin applying for the HFRP Program, it is helpful to remember:

  • The NVC will only contact you in writing and will only send correspondence to an address in the United States. The NVC began contacting eligible petitioners in the United States beginning in March 2015. Any contacts or requests made before this date were not authorized by USCIS and are not valid. Please visit our Report Immigration Scams Web page to learn more about reporting suspicious correspondence.
  • USCIS and the Department of State strongly urge you and your family members to remain vigilant about the possibility of individuals who claim to be U.S. government representatives asking for money. These individuals, often called “scammers,” may attempt to trick you into paying them by offering to help file applications for the HFRP Program. To learn more about common immigration scams and how to report scammers, please visit our Avoid Scams Web page.
  • Websites ending in ".gov” are official government websites. Information on official U.S. government websites ending in “.gov” is official and correct. Official U.S. government email addresses also end in “.gov,” and any correspondence coming from an address that does not end with “.gov” should be considered suspect.
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