CASE: I-601 Hardship Waiver of Inadmissibility
APPLICANT / BENEFICIARY: Cambodia
LOCATION: Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Our client’s wife is a U.S. citizen who resides in Columbus Ohio. She contacted our office in September of 2011 about her husband’s immigrant visa application which needed an I-601 waiver for his inadmissibility. They married in December 2008 and our client filed an immigrant visa petition for her husband which was then denied in 2011 due to his inadmissibility. Our client’s husband was found inadmissible because he misrepresented his information when he applied for a visitor’s visa to come to the United States in 2003. He used a different name when he applied for a visitor’s visa and this incident made him inadmissible under Section 212(a)(6)(C)(i) of the INA. (Any alien who, by fraud or willfully misrepresenting a material fact, seeks to procure a visa, other documentation, or admission into the United States or other benefit provided under this Act is inadmissible). Thus, in order to obtain an immigrant visa, our client’s husband needed to have an approved I-601 waiver.
Our client retained us on September 26, 2011 for the I-601 waiver. Our firm thoroughly analyzed whether the I-601 waiver application will likely be successful. Based on her story and surrounding circumstances (hardship to U.S. citizen wife [our client] if our client’s husband is deported or if his wife would accompany him to Cambodia), our office determined that her husband has a good chance of winning the I-601 application.
If someone is found to be inadmissible under Section 212(a)(6)(C)(i) of the INA, INA Section 212(i) provides for a discretionary waiver of the fraud or misrepresentation inadmissibility ground. To qualify for the waiver, the alien must establish that his or her US Citizen spouse would suffer extreme hardship if the alien were denied admission. INA Section 212(i)(l). In addition to the equities presented, the USCIS may consider the nature of the fraud or misrepresentation.
In Matter of Cervantes, 22 I & N Dec. 560 (BIA 1999), the BIA identified the factors to be considered in determining whether a qualifying relative would suffer extreme hardship if the alien were denied admission. Those factors include: the presence of LPR or USC family ties both within and outside the United States; the conditions in the country to which the qualifying relative would relocate and the extent of the qualifying relative’s ties to that country; the financial impact of departure from the United States; and significant conditions of health, particularly when tied to the unavailability of suitable medical care in the country to which the qualifying relative would relocate.
Our client’s husband’s I-601 application had a good chance since our client’s U.S. Citizen wife from Columbus Ohio suffers from Hepatitis B, Chronic Hepatitis, Bronchitis, and has been going to doctors and hospitals since July 2007. She also suffers from depression, anxiety, and insomnia due to the hardship of not having a father for her son or a husband to help with the expenses of raising their son. In the I-601 brief and supporting documents, our office included extensive medical reports from our client. We argued that if our client’s husband is barred to enter the United States, extreme hardship to her is clearly foreseeable and evident. Our client’s wife is required to have continuous medical check-ups with her doctors for her Hepatitis B, Chronic Hepatitis, and Bronchitis. Also, it would be extremely difficult for her to get the same level of medical attention and satisfactory access to medical services in Cambodia in case our client’s wife joins her husband there. Our office also included the U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory Section for Cambodia to highlight the extremely poor medical services in Cambodia.
In our brief, we also argued that our client has maintained strong family ties in the United States, that she will have difficulty in finding the same level of employment in Cambodia, and that their U.S. Citizen son and our client will face extreme financial and emotional difficulties if he is barred to enter to the United States or if our client is forced to relocate to Cambodia with her son.
On February 7, 2012, we submitted our I-601 waiver application to the U.S. Embassy in Phnom Penh, Cambodia which included the brief in support, our client’s medical records, and other documents that demonstrated hardship to her if her husband is barred from coming to the United States. This application was transferred to the USCIS Field Office in Bangkok, Thailand for adjudication. The I-601 waiver for our client’s husband was approved on March 21, 2012. Now, without any inadmissible grounds, our client’s husband becomes eligible and will get an immigration visa to come to the United States. Now he can be together with his wife and their son in Columbus Ohio.
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