USCIS ANNOUNCES WORK AUTHORIZATION INCIDENT TO PAROLE STATUS FOR CERTAIN AFGHAN AND UKRAINIAN PAROLEES
As of November 21, 2022, USCIS is providing employment authorization incident to status and a no-fee initial employment authorization document to parolees from Afghanistan and Ukraine, in an attempt to accord parolees the same protections as refugees. Eligible parolees include: Afghanis whose unexpired Form I-94 lists a class of admission of “OAR,” Ukrainian parolees whose unexpired Form I-94 contains a class of admission of “UHP” and Ukrainian parolees whose unexpired Form I-94 includes a “DT” class of admission that was issued between February 24, 2022, and September 30, 2023 and indicated Ukraine as the country of citizenship on the document. For parolees who fall into these categories, their unexpired Form I-94 may serve as evidence of their identity as well as employment eligibility.
CASE BACKLOG TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY ACT REINTRODUCED TO CONGRESS IN ATTEMPT TO ADDRESS SEVERE BACKLOG
The bill aims to combat the monstrous backlog at USCIS and is vital to ensure that immigrants have their petitions adjudicated in a timely manner. During COVID, the backlog grew immensely and USCIS has been struggling to catch up. The Case Backlog Transparency and Accountability Act aims to establish quarterly backlog reporting identifying the number of pending immigration benefit applications, the net backlog and the gross backlog as well as the average processing time for each type of immigration benefit. The legislation has been endorsed by the American Immigration Lawyers Association as well as the National Partnership for New Americans.
USCIS ANNOUNCES FEE EXEMPTION EXPANSION FOR AFGHAN NATIONALS
As of November 22, 2022, USCIS has ruled to extend and expand previously announced fee exemptions and expedited application processing for qualifying Afghan nationals through September 30, 2023. The fee exemption will apply to several forms such as, I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, I-824, Application for Action on an Approved Application or Petition, I-601, Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility, and I-551, USCIS Immigrant Fee. Expedited processing is also available for the above listed forms as well as I-589, Application for Asylum and Withholding of Removal.