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Policy change impacts undocumented family members of military

Most citizens of the United States appreciate the work members of the military do to keep them safe. Accordingly Miami area residents may be shocked to learn that until recently, undocumented family members of those in the armed forces were subject to deportation. In addition, they potentially had to leave the U.S. to obtain a visa. Last month the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced a change to that policy wherein certain family members of military personnel may be able to obtain a resident visa without leaving the country. 

There are of course certain requirements that must be met before the policy change can be taken advantage of. For example, to be eligible one must be an immediate family member, defined as a child, parent or spouse of the individual in the military. In addition, an individual must not have a criminal record or anything else that would be deemed an "adverse" factor. The change makes it so that qualifying individuals will not be deported or forced to leave the country to obtain a visa.

Referred to as "paroled in place," the practice has been in use off-an-on over the course of the last few years. During that time it has been applied on a case-by-case basis. Now, however, a policy regarding the matter has been documented in a nine-page memorandum.

Individuals who do not work in the field of immigration may not be aware of how quickly laws can change. Immigration solutions that did not exist one day, may be available the next. This recent change is an example of this and illustrates why in most cases it is beneficial to work with an immigration lawyer.

Source: Fox News Latino, "Immigration Directive 'Paroles' Undocumented Family Members Of U.S. Military And Veterans," Dec. 2, 2013

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