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USCIS is now allowing certain types of entries to qualify for residency cases

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USCIS is now allowing certain types of entries to qualify for residency cases

Last month, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) sub-agency U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), reversed a 2020 policy interpretation impacting certain types of Adjustment of Status applications for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders who entered the United States with permission after obtaining TPS. Known as Advance Parole, TPS holders who can prove there is a justifiable reason to leave the United States temporarily may be able to obtain Advance Parole to depart and return to the United States without any consequences.

In August 2020, USCIS adopted an administrative decision from its own Administrative Appeals Office (AAO). That case, Matter of Z-R-Z-C-, Adopted Decision 2020-02 (AAO Aug. 20, 2020), held that TPS holders who at first entered the United States without inspection, and who later obtained a travel permit to leave the United States and return with permission, did not “correct” the first unlawful entry when it came time to apply for permanent residency through the process known as Adjustment of Status.

In other words, Matter of Z-R-Z-C- held that a non-citizen with TPS authorized to travel outside of the United States would take up the same immigration status and same manner of entry upon reentry. This is important for Adjustment of Status cases, since most applications require an entry with inspection.

On July 1, 2022, USCIS formally announced that it was rescinding this adoption of policy. The policy’s rescission is another move by the Biden administration to undo Trump-era immigration policy in full. With this update, USCIS will now provide a new TPS travel authorization document upon a citizen’s reentry to the United States and those TPS beneficiaries inspected and admitted by DHS will be considered "inspected and admitted," including for the purposes of adjustment of status under the relevant statute.

The TPS program, established in 1990, allows migrants to temporarily live and work in the United States for a defined period of time while their home countries are considered unsafe. Its implementation has been the subject of debate surrounding U.S. immigration policy in the Trump era and beyond. TPS itself confers temporary status and work eligibility, but does not lead directly to a pathway to permanent status. However, TPS holders who can pursue Advance Parole may have other, independent means of being able to regularize their status permanently.

To learn more about how this update may affect your case, contact us at Ibrahim Law Office.

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