Types of Waivers for Immigration Law

Have you ever heard of a U.S. immigration waiver? This document can be very useful for you if you are trying to ultimately live and work in the United States but ran into some issues along the way. In this blog article, we’ll cover who needs a waiver for immigration, the different types of waivers, and what are the waiver processing time you can expect. 

Who Needs Waivers for Immigration? 

There are multiple reasons why someone who is not a U.S. citizen may need to obtain a waiver before they can apply for a visa or enter the United States legally. Some of the most common reasons include:

  • If you were charged with or convicted of a crime
  • If you were deported or removed from the U.S.
  • If you overstayed your original U.S. visa in the past and then left the U.S.

You should also be aware that if you have ever been convicted of theft, robbery, or any other crime that included “taking” someone else’s property, you may be ineligible to enter the U.S. without a waiver. An immigration attorney can help explain the types of waivers for immigration and help you prepare the necessary paperwork to apply for a waiver if you need one to re-enter the United States. 

Types of Waivers 

As stated earlier, there are various waivers for immigration depending on which circumstances you may qualify for. Each waiver requires additional evidence to prove that you are eligible for that particular waiver. Below we’ve listed some of the most common types of waivers:

  • Waiver of Unlawful Presence – To qualify for this type of waiver, you need to prove that you are the spouse or parent of a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident and that the denial of admission would cause that U.S. citizen or permanent resident extreme hardship. These waivers can be tough to prove, so working with an immigration attorney is essential to achieve the best result possible.
  • Waiver After Prior Removal – This waiver is for any foreign national who has been removed from the U.S. and wants to apply before the statutory timeframe.
  • Waiver for Crimes More than 15 Years Old – This waiver is for anyone who has committed a crime in the past and wants to re-enter the U.S. You must first prove that you haven’t been convicted of an aggravated felony since your admission. You have been legally residing in the U.S. for seven years. You must also prove that the criminal activity happened over 15 years ago and that you wouldn’t be a threat to others.
  • Waiver for Possession of Marijuana – To qualify for this waiver, you must prove you are a spouse, son, daughter, or parent of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident and that the denial of admission would put an extreme hardship on that resident or citizen. You also must not have been convicted of an aggravated felony since your admission and have been legally living in the U.S. for seven years.
  • General Waiver for Nonimmigrants – If you fall into multiple categories of inadmissibility, you can apply for a waiver to visit the U.S. You must say why you need to come to the U.S. and why your visit will not be harmful to the U.S. 

Waiver Processing Times 

While waiver processing times can vary, you should generally expect your application to take roughly four to six weeks. Please note that this is only a rough estimate, and your waiver can take longer to process.

If you or your loved one are interested in waivers for immigration, it’s best to speak to an experienced immigration attorney. At Dominguez Law Firm, PLLC, we work with our clients to get them through the process and work hard to achieve the best result possible. Contact us today to discuss your specific situation.