Palmer Polaski Blog

U.S. citizens will be able to return to the United States on an expired U.S. passport through December 31, 2021, if they: are currently abroad seeking to return to the United States; are flying directly to the United States, a U.S. territory, or have only short-term transit (connecting flight) through a foreign country on their […]

In February, President Biden signed an Executive Order establishing an Interagency Task Force on the Reunification of Families, in response to the prior administration’s use of immigration laws to intentionally separate children from their parents and legal guardians, including through the use of a zero-tolerance policy. In its first 120 days, the Task Force (1) […]

On May 27, 2021, the DHS issued a highly anticipated memorandum for ICE trial attorneys providing interim guidance on enforcement and removal priorities and exercising prosecutorial discretion. The memorandum should allow ICE attorneys more independence, will help cases be resolved more amicably, will enhance efficiency in immigration court, and will hopefully reduce the backlog of […]

Because most U.S. embassies and consulates are still operating at a reduced capacity due to the continued impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, DOS has announced a priority system for the processing and scheduling of interviews for immigrant visa (IV) applications. A significant backlog of applications remains for IV (as well as for nonimmigrant visa) applicants […]

On June 14, 2021, USCIS announced a new policy expanding access to work authorization and protection from deportation for victims of crime who have filed good-faith applications with USCIS. Before this policy change, work authorization would not be granted until the U visa application was decided by USCIS. As USCIS is taking close to five […]

On June 16, 2021, the Attorney General mercifully vacated precedential decisions in Matter of A-B– and Matter of L-E-A- that were intended to restrict asylum. The prior decisions obstructed those seeking asylum benefits as a result of domestic abuse and gang violence due to familial ties. The old precedent also intended to severely limit eligibility […]

USCIS updated policy guidance in its Policy Manual regarding applicants’ registration to vote through a state’s department of motor vehicles or other state benefit application process and the effects on an applicant’s good moral character (GMC). This is a key development because applicants for naturalization must demonstrate GMC during the required period of time immediately […]

USCIS has temporarily suspended the biometrics submission requirement for certain applicants filing Form I-539, requesting an extension of stay or a change of status to H-4, L-2, or E nonimmigrant status. USCIS will allow adjudications for those specific categories to proceed based on biographic information and related background checks, without capturing fingerprints and a photograph. […]

Effective June 9, USCIS announced new policies on expedited processing, Requests for Evidence (RFEs), Notices of Intent to Deny (NOIDs), and employment authorization documents. These policies seek to alleviate the negative impact of application process delays and offer applicants additional opportunities to request that their applications be expedited. In addition, the new policies demand more […]

On June 7, 2021, the Supreme Court unanimous held in Sanchez v. Mayorkas that a grant of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) does not qualify as being “admitted and inspected” for purposes of adjustment of status. Prior to this decision, federal circuit courts were split on the issue. Accordingly, many TPS recipients living in parts of […]

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