A. Applicability

Inadmissibility on account of false claim to U.S. citizenship does not apply to:

Special immigrant juveniles seeking adjustment of status; [1] See INA 245(h)(2)(A). and

Applicants for registry. [2] Registry is a section of immigration law that enables certain foreign nationals who have been present in the United States since January 1, 1972, the ability to apply for lawful permanent residence even if currently in the United States unlawfully. See INA 249. See 8 CFR 249.

B. Exception [3] See INA 212(a)(6)(C)(ii)(II).

In 2000, Congress added a statutory exception to inadmissibility for false claim to U.S. citizenship. [4] See Section 201(b) of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 (CCA), Pub. L. 106-395, 114 Stat. 1631, 1633 (October 30, 2000). Congress made the exception apply retroactively.

The exception applies to false claims to U.S. citizenship made on or after September 30, 1996, if the applicant satisfies the following requirements:

Each parent of the applicant (or each adoptive parent in case of an adopted child) is or was a U.S. citizen, whether by birth or naturalization;

The applicant permanently resided in the United States prior to attaining the age of 16; and

The applicant reasonably believed at the time of the representation that he or she was a U.S. citizen.

Each of the applicant’s parents had to be a U.S. citizen at the time of the false claim to U.S. citizenship to meet the first requirement of this exception. [5] See INA 212(a)(6)(C)(ii)(II).

​This exception does not limit the foreign national’s ability to prove on other grounds that he or she did not know the claim was false. Rather, it is one situation in which it would be reasonable to find that the foreign national did not know the claim to U.S. citizenship was false.

C. Waiver [6] For more information, see Volume 9, Waivers [9 USCIS-PM].

The availability of a waiver to an inadmissibility ground depends on the immigration benefit. In general, there is no waiver for inadmissibility based on a false claim to U.S. citizenship [7] See INA 212(a)(6)(C)(ii). for foreign nationals seeking lawful permanent resident status:

As an immediate relative;

Under an immigrant preference category (other than special immigrant juveniles);

As a diversity immigrant;

Under the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1966; [8] See Pub. L. 89-732 (November 2, 1966). or

Under any other statute that does not provide authority to waive the ground.

An officer may grant a waiver to a foreign national seeking adjustment of status as a refugee or an asylee, as a legalization applicant, or under any other basis that specifically permits a waiver of this ground of inadmissibility. [9] See INA 209(c). See INA 245A(d)(2)(B)(i).

​Inadmissibility based on a false claim to U.S. citizenship does not necessarily bar adjustment of status based on residence in the United States since before January 1, 1972.
[10] See INA 249. It could, however, support a finding that the applicant is not a person of good moral character.

Nonimmigrants may seek permission to enter despite the inadmissibility. [11] Under INA 212(d)(3)(A).

Footnotes


2. [^]

Registry is a section of immigration law that enables certain foreign nationals who have been present in the United States since January 1, 1972, the ability to apply for lawful permanent residence even if currently in the United States unlawfully. See INA 249. See 8 CFR 249.

4. [^]

See Section 201(b) of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 (CCA), Pub. L. 106-395, 114 Stat. 1631, 1633 (October 30, 2000).

6. [^]

For more information, see Volume 9, Waivers [9 USCIS-PM].

8. [^]

See Pub. L. 89-732 (November 2, 1966).

10. [^]

See INA 249.

11. [^]

Under INA 212(d)(3)(A).