Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Am I eligible for an I601-A/Provisional Waiver based on the expansion?

A. In 2016, Provisional Unlawful Presence Waivers were expanded to include individuals with approved and available immigrant visa petitions who are the spouses, sons and daughters, or certain children (17 or older) of Lawful Permanent Residents, not just U.S. Citizens. Not only does this apply to family-based petitions, it also applies to employment-based petitions and those selected to participate in the Diversity Visa Program.

Additionally, the expansion also includes those who have orders of removal with approved applications to reapply for admission, including those who have reentered after being removed from the United States if the removal order has not been reinstated by CBP or ICE.

This expansion creates a pathway to residency for those that were otherwise ineligible.

Q. What are removal proceedings?

A. These are proceedings conducted in Immigration Court to determine a person’s removability or inadmissibility to the United States. In these proceedings a person can apply for certain benefits under the Immigration and Nationality Act which may give the person legal status in the U.S.

Q. Do I need to hire an immigration attorney for removal proceedings?

A. Yes, removal proceedings involve complex areas of immigration law. Removal proceedings are very important in that they determine whether or not somebody will be deported from the United States. At a removal proceeding, an Immigration Judge will determine whether you are ordered deported from the United States. It is highly recommended that you retain an experienced immigration attorney.

Q. What is a master calendar hearing?

A. This is preliminary hearing where the charges of inadmissibility or removability are addressed by the Immigration Court. At this hearing, the Immigration Court will also determine a person’s eligibility for relief under the Immigration and Nationality Act. This hearing is generally held along with many other individuals who are also scheduled for master calendar hearings.

Q. What is an individual hearing?

A. This is a hearing where the Immigration Court hears testimony and reviews evidence to determine if a person should be granted relief. The Immigration Court will also hold an individual hearing to determine whether a charge of removability or inadmissibility should be sustained. This hearing is generally held outside the presence of other Respondents.

Q. What if I have an order of removal or deportation and I am now married to a United States citizen or a Cuba resident?

A. You may be able to motion the court to reopen (or eliminate the order of removal or deportation) your removal proceedings so that you may be able to apply for residency. It is often the case that a person will need the agreement of the Office of the Chief Counsel to motion the Immigration Court to reopen a case.

Q. What is a motion to reopen?

A. This is where the court is requested or moved to reopen removal proceedings where a decision is final. This often occurs when an order of removal has been issued and it is requested that the court rescind or eliminate the order of removal.

Q. What is a joint motion to reopen?

A. This is a motion to reopen that requires the agreement of the Office of the Chief Counsel because of time or numerical limitations placed on motions to reopen by the Immigration and Nationality Act.