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PRIMER – TEMPORARY PROTECTED STATUS

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is a temporary immigration status given to nationals of certain countries experiencing problems such as ongoing armed conflict, an environmental disaster, an epidemic, or other extraordinary conditions that render it difficult or unsafe for the nationals to be deported there. It allows for a work permit and the ability to travel. TPS beneficiaries are protected from removal from the United States. The countries currently designated for TPS per the Secretary of Homeland…

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PRIMER – FALSE CLAIMS TO U.S. CITIZENSHIP

A false claim to citizenship is when a non-U.S. Citizen claims to be a U.S. citizen to obtain a benefit under federal or state law. This offense carries severe consequences and takes away almost all possibilities to gain legal status, as there is no waiver to forgive this offense. An individual who is removed on the grounds of a false claim to citizenship is permanently inadmissible and cannot return to the United States. Some possible examples…

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INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS MAY BE FORCED TO LEAVE THE UNITED STATES

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has announced that if F1 or M1 visa holders’ institutions changed to a fully online format in the fall, these visa holders would need to leave the country or risk removal. ICE has offered that they could switch to an institution with in-person classes. If they are not currently in the country, they will be barred from entry. An F1 visa is issued to students who are attending a university…

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DRIVE-THRU NATURALIZATIONS

Naturalization is the way in which a person not born in the United States voluntarily becomes a U.S. citizen. A person is eligible to apply for naturalization if he or she is at least 18 years old when filing the Form N-400 (Application for Naturalization) and has been a legal permanent resident for at least 5 years (or 3 years if married to a U.S. citizen). There are other eligibility requirements, such as good moral character.…

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PRIMER – UNLAWFUL PRESENCE

Unlawful presence under U.S. immigration law is defined as the period of time that a person is in the United States without being admitted or paroled, and are not in a “period of stay authorized by the Secretary [of Homeland Security].” A person accrues unlawful presence if they are in the United States without being admitted or paroled or if they have remained after the expiration of their authorized period of stay. The law provides exceptions…

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PRIMER – K-1 VISA

The K-1 visa, otherwise known as the fiancé(e) visa, allows U.S. Citizens to legally bring their foreign-born fiancé(e) to the United States to get married and eventually establish permanent legal residency. To obtain this visa, the marriage must take place within 90 days of the fiancé(e)’s arrival into the United States. Furthermore, the marriage must be of good faith, in order words, a bona fide marriage with the intent to spend the rest of their lives…

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PRIMER – DEPORTATION AND REMOVAL PROCEEDINGS

Under current U.S. immigration law, an important distinction in defining whether certain laws will apply to an alien in removal proceedings is if the person has ever been officially admitted to the United States. Admission is generally defined as “the lawful entry of [an] alien into the United States after inspection and authorization by an immigration officer.” In other words, if you arrived in the U.S. lawfully and were inspected by an officer, you have been…

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PRIMER – REMOVING THE CONDITIONS ON PERMANENT RESIDENCE

The immigration form I-751 is otherwise known as the Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence. If you have a conditional Green Card, you must file the I-751 form to request that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) remove the conditions on your Green Card. You receive a conditional Green Card if you have only been married to your U.S. citizen or legal resident spouse for less than 2 years when your petition for a Green Card…

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PRIMER – IMMEDIATE RELATIVES AND PREFERENCE RELATIVES

In U.S. immigration law, immigrants can gain legal resident status through relatives who are either green card holders or U.S. citizens. There are two classifications of relatives: immediate relatives and preference relatives. An immediate relative is the spouse of a U.S. citizen, the unmarried child under 21 years of age of a U.S. citizen, or the parent of a U.S. citizen (if the U.S. citizen is 21 or older). Therefore, if you are any of these…

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U.S. SUPREME COURT DECIDES TO CONTINUE DACA

The United States Supreme Court has decided that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, otherwise known as DACA, will continue. DACA was an executive order President Obama put forth in 2012 to give temporary legal status and provide protection from deportation to many undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as children. There are currently around 700,000 DACA recipients. The program provides work permits and allows drivers licenses to people who qualify. It does not provide…

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