Cite as "AILA InfoNet Doc. No. 02101546 (posted Oct. 15, 2002)"
Earned Legalization and Family Unification Act of
Legislation to provide access to permanent resident status for
qualified, undocumented immigrant workers and to unify the families of US
I. Earned Legalization
- Criteria for Adjustment of Status: The Attorney General shall adjust the
status of any undocumented immigrant to that of a person lawfully admitted for
permanent residence if the individual meets the following
- Continuous residence in the United States for at least 5 years prior to the
date of enactment;
- A history of work in the United States in the aggregate of 24 months;
- Passes a federal background check;
- Establishes no outstanding tax liability or has rectified any outstanding
- Demonstrates a minimal understanding of ordinary English and a knowledge and
understanding of the history of the United States, or is satisfactorily pursuing
a course of study to achieve such an understanding of English and such a
knowledge and understanding of the history and government of the United
- Registers with the Attorney General at the time of filing an application and
pays a fee to be determined by the Attorney General in consultation with
- Demonstrates that he/she has not been a federal public charge; and
- Applies prior to the sunset of the program 3 years following the date of
issuance of final regulations.
Family Unification: The spouse and
children of a person eligible for adjustment of status under this provision are
eligible for adjustment of status.
Work Authorization: Provides
applicant and eligible dependents work authorization during the pending
Remove Obstacles to Educational
Opportunities for Immigrant Children: Provides adjustment of status
eligibility for children who have no eligible parents and who have been students
in the United States for 5 years, remain in school and show good moral
False Statements Penalties:
Penalizes any false statements made in the application by an applicant with a
fine or denial of the application.
Judicial review: Provides judicial
or administrative review for denials of an application.
II. Family Unification/Visa Backlog Reduction
1) To ensure the availability of visas to qualifying family members and
reduce the current backlog of visa applicants:
- Remove the immediate relatives– spouses, unmarried minor children and
parents – of US citizens from the worldwide cap.