Practice Alert: Denials and Refusals to Adjudicate Military Parole in Place Applications

Background:

In early July 2019, various media outlets began to report that USCIS planned to terminate Military Parole in Place (PIP) for families of active duty and veteran military personnel. Although no date was given, it was anticipated that the program would be terminated by the end of July.

On July 10, 2019, in response to these reports, 22 senators sent a letter to the Acting Secretaries of DHS and DOD urging the administration to reverse any plans to terminate Military PIP, citing military readiness concerns and the sacrifices made by active and veteran servicemembers as key factors in this request. On July 30, 2019. AILA joined 27 other organizations in sending a letter to DOD, DHS, and USCIS also requesting that the administration continue to recognize and grant Military PIP.

PIP is governed by INA 212(d)(5)(A). If granted, it allows foreign nationals who entered the United States without inspection to obtain an I-94 and an Employment Authorization Document. Military PIP is designed specifically to allow the spouse, widow(er), parent, son, or daughter of both active duty servicemembers and veterans to obtain an I-94 and potentially create eligibility for adjustment of status.

While Military PIP was not terminated in July, USCIS did announced the end of two parole programs on August 2, 2019: the Haitian Family Reunification Parole program and the Filipino World War II Veterans Parole program. In this announcement, USCIS stated that they would review other categorical parole programs. Military PIP was not specifically mentioned.

Although Military PIP has not been officially terminated, AILA members are reporting a higher rate of both denials and long/delayed processing times at some USCIS Field Offices. Denials have been reported for reasons that, in the past, would not have precluded an approval, including charges for driving without a license, petty theft, and other issues that would not lead to a finding of inadmissibility. AILA is concerned by these reports as well as a possible termination of Military PIP and will continue to monitor the issue and advocate for the program's continuation.

AILA Request for Examples:

AILA requests examples from those who are facing delays or denials of Military PIP requests to fill out the online survey below. AILA believes that our elected officials and the public should be aware of any potential efforts to quietly terminate any parole benefit(s) for U.S. military members, veterans and their families. AILA's USCIS HQ Committee will use the survey results to educate and advocate with elected officials, USCIS (including the Ombudsman's Office), partner organizations, and/or the media to ensure the continuation of this important immigration benefit and national security tool. Please note that we are unable to provide case liaison assistance for these submissions.

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Cite as AILA Doc. No. 19083036.