UNCLASSIFIED (U)

9 FAM 203.5 

(U) Casework for Follow-to-Join Asylees and Refugees

(CT:VISA-1153;   09-15-2020)
(Office of Origin:  CA/VO)

9 FAM 203.5-1  (U) Introduction

(CT:VISA-1050;   04-17-2020)

a. (U) V92 and V93 Introduction: 

(1)  (U) V92/93 beneficiaries are eligible for derivative status on the basis of their relationship to a principal asylee or principal refugee (see 9 FAM 203.5-4(A)).  They are not required to establish that they have been persecuted, or have a well-founded fear of persecution (see 9 FAM 203.5-4(A) paragraph c(2)). However, you must determine whether the beneficiary is barred, inadmissible, or subject to denial (see 9 FAM 203.5-4(B)).

(2)  (U) Your role in processing V92 and V93 cases is discussed in 9 FAM 203.5-2 below, and the need for confidentiality in handling such cases is covered in 9 FAM 203.5-3.  Eligibility for V92 and V93 status is covered in 9 FAM 203.5-4, and detailed instructions on processing procedures for V92/V93 cases are provided in 9 FAM 203.6.

(3)  (U) Use care when processing cases to be sure that you are using instructions appropriate for the type of automated system you’re using, for the appropriate consular section roles (see 9 FAM 203.5-2), and for V92 vs. V93 benefits.  V93 beneficiaries, like all refugees, have very specific processing and eligibility requirements, and are entitled to certain benefits that V92 beneficiaries do not receive.  These include U.S. Government-funded medical exams, resettlement agency sponsorship, travel loans, and reception and placement benefits upon arrival to the United States.        

b. (U) Lifecycle of V92/V93 Case:  See 9 FAM 203.6 for detailed instructions on processing steps for V92/V93 cases.  In overview, the lifecycle of a Form I-730, Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition, filed on behalf of a beneficiary overseas is as follows:

(1)  (U) V92 petitions are filed with and adjudicated at either the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Nebraska or Texas Service Center.  V93 petitions are filed with the USCIS Nebraska or Texas Service Center and are adjudicated by the USCIS International Adjudications Support Branch (IASB).  If the petition is approved, it is forwarded overseas via the National Visa Center (NVC) to the post having jurisdiction over the beneficiary’s place of residence;

(2)  (U) A USCIS officer or consular officer (where USCIS is not present) interviews the beneficiary to determine eligibility to travel to the United States;

(3)  (U) If the beneficiary is approved to travel, the officer issues travel documentation to enable the beneficiary to travel to the U.S. and request admission at a U.S. port of entry (POE).  For V93 cases, the officer also helps make travel arrangements.  A U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer makes the final decision whether to admit the beneficiary to the United States;

(4)  (U) If the beneficiary is found ineligible to travel, you must inform the beneficiary and return the case as a Consular Return via the NVC to the appropriate USCIS Service Center for possible denial.  If the evidence provided by the overseas office is insufficient to support a denial or is overcome by additional evidence provided by the petitioner, the USCIS Service Center reaffirms the case and sends it back to post for continued processing.

(5)  (U) V92/V93 cases do not terminate so should not be destroyed.  Any case where the travel document will not be issued must be returned as a consular return (see 9 FAM 203.6-9) rather than destroyed in the consular section, including cases where a significant amount of time has passed with no contact.

9 FAM 203.5-2  (U) Roles in v92 and v93 cases

(CT:VISA-1050;   04-17-2020)

a. (U) USCIS and Consular Authorities:

(1)  (U) As a matter of law, authority to adjudicate and process refugee and affirmative asylum claims, including Form I-730 follow-to-join derivatives of asylees and refugees, rests exclusively with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).  (See INA 207, INA 208 and 6 U.S.C. 271)

(2)  (U) USCIS is the DHS administering agency, and the USCIS Nebraska and Texas Service Centers have primary responsibility for I-730 petition adjudications of asylees interviewed by consular officers.  (Note: The Executive Office for Immigration Review of the Department of Justice also adjudicates asylum claims filed defensively or referred by USCIS but does not adjudicate Form I-730 petitions for derivative refugee or asylee status.)  USCIS International Adjudications Support Branch has primary responsibility for I-730 petition adjudications of refugees interviewed by consular officers. 

(3)  (U) Consular officers act as agents of the USCIS Service Centers for the purpose of facilitating overseas V92/V93 case processing and verifying the eligibility of the approved beneficiaries, but not for final adjudication of the I-730 petition.  If you uncover information during case processing that suggests USCIS should not have approved an I-730 petition, you should return the case via the NVC to the adjudicating USCIS Service Center or International Adjudications Support Branch for further action, following the guidance in 9 FAM 203.6-9 and 9 FAM 203.6-11 for reporting information that calls into question whether the beneficiary is eligible for derivative refugee or asylum status.

b. (U) Consular Role in Case Processing: 

(1)  (U) Your role in case processing differs depending on whether USCIS is present at post, whether the case is an follow-to-join asylee (“Visas 92” - V92) or a follow-to-join refugee (“Visas 93” - V93), and whether post has immigrant visa processing software (IVO) or is a non-IVO post.  V93 cases will only be processed in IVO at immigrant visa-processing posts.  V92 can be processed in either NIV or IVO and at any location.

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(3)  (U) With regard to USCIS and non-USCIS presence posts and the consular role in V92/V93 processing, posts should follow the guidelines below.  Note that a USCIS-presence post is one where USCIS is co-located, has a permanent office and a counter-presence that regularly sees the public.

(a)  (U) USCIS Presence Posts: 

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c.  (U) Workflow Description for V92/V93 Cases Handled by Both USCIS and Visa Units with IVO Systems (At Locations Where Foils Are Issued): 

(1)  (U) How to Use This Section: 

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(b)  (U) In addition, per paragraph b above, V93 eligibility standards and processing are different from those used in V92 cases – the example shown below notes steps which apply only to V93 or only to V92 case processing; if neither is specified, the instruction applies to both V92 and V93 cases.

(c)  (U) Note that the following workflow descriptions are intended to show how USCIS and consular sections interact in V92/V93 cases, and to give consular sections information about USCIS instructions to its officers.  However, IVO posts (with a USCIS presence) must follow applicable processing guidelines in 9 FAM 203.6 related to the processing steps for which they are responsible; such posts must not rely solely on the following workflow charts for processing instructions.

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9 FAM 203.5-3  (U) Confidentiality in Refugee, Asylee, V92 and V93 Casework

(CT:VISA-1050;   04-17-2020)

a. (U) Overview:  Department of State records related to visa and refugee processing are considered “confidential” under INA 222(f) and use of these records is restricted to "the formulation, amendment, administration, or enforcement of immigration, nationality and other laws of the United States."  With limited exceptions further described below, information regarding specific refugee cases may not be released to anyone other than the applicant himself or herself and authorized third parties, except as needed by organizations directly involved in the refugee processing system or for use by Members of Congress who have need of the information for "the formulation, amendment, administration, or enforcement of immigration, nationality, or other laws of the United States."  See 9 FAM 603.1 for additional information on protecting visa information.

(1)  (U) Confidentiality in this context refers to its disclosure and releasability, not its security classification.  (See also 9 FAM 603.1-3.)

(2)  (U) United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) policy requires strict confidentiality regarding refugees and asylum seekers.  Refugees referred to the U.S. refugee program by UNHCR have signed a confidentiality release to permit UNHCR to release personal information to resettlement governments and processing agencies.

b. (U) Guidance on Release of Information:

(1)  (U) Applicant Inquiries:  A refugee applicant (beneficiary) may make a direct inquiry to the Resettlement Support Center (RSC) or consulate responsible for the processing of his/her V92/93 case – orally or in writing – concerning the status of his or her case.  If an applicant has a serious impediment such as age, illness, or physical disability that prevents him or her from asking on his or her own behalf, minimal case status information may be provided to a third party if the inquirer satisfactorily establishes his or her bona fides.  Consular officers should exercise common sense and caution in responding to such inquiries and should provide only the minimum information necessary to respond to the inquiry.  Case status information may also be provided to certain authorized third parties as described below.

(2)  (U) PRM, UNHCR, IOM, DHS and Other Official Entity Inquiries:  Consular officers may respond directly to oral or written inquiries about the status of cases made by the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM), UNHCR, and IOM, the sponsoring resettlement agency in the United States, or any other official entity such as a U.S. Embassy or DHS office that requires case information to facilitate processing of the case.

(3)  (U) Congressional Inquiries: 

(a)  (U) Written (including emails) inquiries from Members of Congress or their staffs that do not specifically relate to adjudication decisions by DHS should be answered with only the information necessary to answer the inquiry.  Case-specific information in response to telephonic inquiries from Members or their staffs may not be provided.  No copies of documents or other items from a case file may be provided.  Responses to case status inquiries should include a reminder that, pursuant to INA Section 222(f), the information:

(i)     (U) is to be treated as confidential;

(ii)    (U) is being provided to them solely for the purposes related to "the formulation, amendment, administration, or enforcement of the immigration, nationality, and other laws of the United States;"

(iii)    (U) should not be shared with other Members of Congress or their staffs except as specifically needed for the aforementioned purposes; and

(iv)   (U) should not be released to the public.

(b)  (U) If the incoming Congressional letter requests that the Embassy respond directly to a constituent or other third party, the consular officer should provide the requested case summary information to the Member of Congress unless it relates to adjudication decisions made by DHS.  Include the following statement:  Pursuant to Section 222(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, "The records of the Department of State and of diplomatic and consular offices of the United States pertaining to the issuance or refusal of visas or permits to enter the United States shall be considered confidential and shall be used only for the formulation, amendment, administration, or enforcement of immigration, nationality, and other laws of the United States”. In accordance with law and policies governing the confidentiality of Department of State refugee processing records, we are unable to provide information on specific refugee cases directly to your constituent.  The refugee applicant or a third party authorized by the applicant to receive information may obtain information about the case by inquiring directly to the Resettlement Support Center handling the case.  We appreciate your understanding of the Department's concern to ensure confidentiality in the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP).

(4)  (U) Third Party Inquiries: 

(a)  (U) Written (including emails) inquiries from U.S. Government law enforcement entities that do not specifically relate to adjudication decisions by DHS, but are made for official purposes, will generally be answered with the requested information.  Information in response to telephonic inquiries may not be provided.  Responses must be coordinated with and sent from PRM/Refugee Admissions, with involvement of the Legal Adviser’s Office, where needed.

(b)  (U) Written (including email) inquiries for case status information from third parties such as attorneys or accredited representatives may be answered with the requested information if the request is accompanied by or preceded by a completed and signed Form G-28 or Form G-28I, which is issued by DHS.

(i)     (U) The Form G-28 or Form G-28I must include complete and verified information, including signature, from the refugee applicant, as well as complete information, including signature, from the relevant third party.  RSCs or consular officers should ensure that the applicant’s signature on the form is verified against his/her signature on file, if available.  Responses to case status inquiries may only be sent to the physical address or email address provided in the original Form G-28 or G-28I.  Case status information in response to telephonic requests from third parties may not be provided.

(ii)    (U) There is not a defined validity period for the G-28 or G-28I.  However, it may be appropriate to check whether the G-28 or G-28I remains valid - whether the authorized third party remains the representative of the individual.

(c)  (U) Written inquiries (including email) for case status information from other third parties, such as family members, may be answered with the requested information if the request is accompanied by or preceded by a letter from the applicant providing authorization that the information be shared with the third party.  There is no specific format for this letter, but it must contain at a minimum the applicant’s full name and USRAP case number, along with the full name of the third party to whom the information may be released, and it must be signed by the applicant.  RSCs or consular officers should ensure that the applicant’s signature on the letter is verified against his/her signature on file, if available.  The letter must also contain a physical address and/or email address for the authorized third party.  Case status information in response to telephonic requests from third parties may not be provided.

(d)  (U) The information that can be provided to an authorized third party is limited to case status information.  Inquiries for other information regarding specific refugee cases may not be provided to third parties, even if authorization has been provided.  For example, an authorized third party may not inquire as to the reason a refugee applicant has been deemed ineligible for P-2 access.  Further, an authorized third party is not permitted to accompany a refugee applicant to RSC intake and prescreening or engage in other forms of involvement in refugee processing.

(e)  (U) If information disclosure to third parties has not be authorized, responses to inquiries must be limited to general descriptive material about the USRAP or a description of program procedures that might be of assistance to the inquirer.

(5)  (U) Contact the Office of Admissions in the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM/A) for further information on refugee records or templates for response to inquiries.

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9 FAM 203.5-4  (U) Eligibility for Following-to-Join Refugee or Asylee (V92/V93) Status

(CT:VISA-763;   04-16-2019)

a. (U) Eligibility Guidelines:  To be eligible to travel to the U.S. as a family member of an individual granted refugee or asylee status:

(1)  (U) The beneficiary must establish their identity and a qualifying relationship with the refugee or asylee (see 9 FAM 203.5-4(A) and 9 FAM 203.5-4); and

(2)  (U) The beneficiary must be determined to not be subject to any bars, or reasons for denial of their case, unless such issues have been satisfactorily resolved (see 9 FAM 203.5-4(B)).

b. (U) No Adjudication of Refugee or Asylum Claim:  V92/93 beneficiaries are eligible for derivative status on the basis of their relationship to a principal asylee or principal refugee.  They are not required to establish that they have been persecuted or have a well-founded fear of persecution (see 9 FAM 203.5-4 paragraph b).  Similarly, the credibility of the petitioner’s original asylum or refugee claim is not within your jurisdiction to revisit (see 9 FAM 203.6-11 for guidance on cases in which information presented by the beneficiary indicates  significant issues with the petitioner’s refugee or aslyee claim.)

c.  (U) Case Processing:  This section deals only with eligibility for V92 and V93 status.  See general V92 and V93 case processing guidelines in 9 FAM 203.6

9 FAM 203.5-4(A)  (U) V92/V93 Qualifying Relationship with Refugee or Asylee

(CT:VISA-879;   06-27-2019)

a. (U) Introduction:  There are two factors in demonstrating a qualifying relationship with a refugee or asylee:

(1)  (U) An eligible petitioner – see paragraph b; and

(2)  (U) A “spouse” or “child” relationship with the petitioner – see paragraph c for an overview of these qualifying relationships, paragraph d for information on the “spouse” relationship, and paragraph e for information on the “child” relationship.  Other familial relationships (which cannot be the basis for V92/V93 status) are addressed in paragraph f.

b. (U) Eligible Petitioner: 

(1)  (U) Refugee or Asylee Status:  The Form I-730 Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition for V92/V93 beneficiaries may be filed by a refugee who was admitted to the United States as a principal refugee, or by an asylee who was granted asylum as a principal asylee either by USCIS or by the Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review. See also 9 FAM 203.6-2 paragraph a(1)(b) for information on petitions filed by LPRs and naturalized citizens who were refugees or asylees.  For more general information on filing, adjudication and processing of I-730 petitions, see 9 FAM 203.6-2.

(2)  (U) Effect of Death of Petitioner:

(a)  (U) A beneficiary is ineligible for Form I-730 benefits if the petitioner dies before the beneficiary’s arrival to the United States.  In such circumstances, the beneficiary should not be issued travel authorization.  Instead, the officer should obtain a death certificate or other evidence of the petitioner’s death and return it along with the Form I-730 via the NVC to USCIS for the case to be reopened and denied (see 9 FAM 203.6-9 on consular returns). 

(b)  (U) In some circumstances, the beneficiary may apply for humanitarian parole with USCIS in order to travel to the United States.  (See 9 FAM 202.3-3(B)(1) for more information on humanitarian parole.)

c.  (U) Beneficiary Eligibility:

(1)  (U) Spouse or Child:  A Form I-730 may be filed on behalf of either a spouse or a child as defined, respectively, in INA 101(a)(35) and INA 101(b)(1)(A-E) (see definitions in 9 FAM 102.8-1 and 102.8-2).  A separate Form I-730 must be filed for each qualifying family member.  Paragraphs d and e below provide additional information on spouse and child relationships; paragraph f addresses other familial relationships.

(2)  (U) Relationship Key to Eligibility:  V92/93 beneficiaries are eligible for derivative status on the basis of their relationship to a principal asylee or principal refugee.  They are not required to establish that they have been persecuted or have a well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion as described in the first sentence of the refugee definition at INA 101(a)(42). 

(a)  (U) Unlike a principal refugee or asylum applicant, V92/93 beneficiaries may be eligible for derivative status, even if they are firmly resettled in another country, since the firm resettlement bar does not apply to them. 

(b)  (U) These beneficiaries also need not be the same nationality as the I-730 petitioner and may reside in their country of nationality or any other country.

(3)  (U) Nature of V92/93 Qualifying Relationships: 

(a)  (U) In order to derive V92 or V93 status under 8 CFR 207.7(c) and 8 CFR 208.21(b), the qualifying relationship between the petitioner and the beneficiary:

(i)     (U) Must have existed at the time that the petitioner was granted asylum (for V92 cases) or admitted to the United States as a refugee (for V93 cases), and

(ii)    (U) Must continue to exist at the time of filing for Form I-730 following-to-join benefits, and at the time of the spouse or child’s subsequent admission to the United States.

(b)  (U) The exception to this is a child who had been conceived but was not born (was in utero) as of the date on which the petitioner acquired status (see paragraph e (2) below).

(c)  (U) Relationships created after the date of the petitioner’s asylum grant or refugee admission do not qualify for Form I-730 purposes, although the refugee or asylee may be eligible to file a Form I-130 for the same individual once that refugee or asylee adjusts to Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status.

(d)  (U) A qualifying relationship will cease to exist if, prior to the approval of the Form I-730 or a beneficiary’s admission into the United States, the petitioner and spouse divorce, the petitioner’s child marries (see paragraph e(5) below), or the petitioner dies (see paragraph b(2) above).  

d. (U) Eligibility of V92/V93 Spouse: 

(1)  (U) Qualifying Marriage:  To qualify as a V92/V93 beneficiary spouse, the individual must meet the definition of spouse as defined in INA 101(a)(35).  You should follow the guidance at 9 FAM 102.8-1 for determining whether the marriage is valid for immigration purposes, including the underlying principal that the law of the place of marriage celebration controls.  A child's parent only qualifies as a beneficiary if married to the petitioner at the time the petitioner acquired asylee or refugee status.  See also 9 FAM 203.6-5 paragraph (a)(2).

(2)  (U) Proxy Marriage:  The terms “spouse,” “wife,” and “husband” do not include a spouse, wife, or husband by reason of any marriage ceremony where the contracting parties thereto are not physically present in the presence of each other (i.e., proxy marriages), unless the marriage has been consummated.  (See 9 FAM 102.8-1(D).)

(3)  (U) Marriage Fraud:  The beneficiary is not eligible to derive status if he/she is a husband or wife determined by USCIS to have attempted or conspired to enter into a marriage solely for the purpose of evading immigration laws.

e. (U) Eligibility of V92/V93 Child:  To qualify as a V92/V93 beneficiary as a child, the individual must be unmarried and meet the definition of “child” in INA 101(b)(1)(A)-(E). (See also 9 FAM 102.8-2.)

(1)  (U) Child Status When I-730 Filed and Adjudicated, and at Admission

(a)  (U) The parent-child relationship must exist at the time the I-730 was filed, at the time of its adjudication, and at the time of the beneficiary’s subsequent admission to the United States (see 8 CFR 208.21(b) and 207.7(c)).

(b)  (U) Subject to certain situations governed by the Child Status Protection Act’s (CSPA - Public Law 107-208) “aging out” provisions, a child includes only an unmarried person under the age of 21.  Accordingly, the child must be both unmarried and under 21 years of age at the time he or she is issued the appropriate documentation for travel and at the time that he or she applies for admission to the United States, unless the CSPA applies.  See paragraph (4) below for more information on CSPA provisions).

(2)  (U) Child in Utero:  8 CFR 207.7(c) and 8 CFR 208.21(b) allow a child to qualify for V92 or V93 status even if the child was not born until after the petitioner was granted asylum or admitted as a refugee, provided such child was in utero (i.e., the child had been conceived but was not yet born) prior to the date on which the petitioner acquired such status.  As such, a Form I-730 may be approved for a child who had been conceived but was not born as of the date on which the petitioner acquired status, so long as the beneficiary falls within one of the definitions of “child” set forth in INA 101(b)(1).

(3)  (U) Bases for Child Status: 

(a)  (U) Although a petitioner will usually be the biological parent of the in utero child claimed as the derivative, it is possible for such a beneficiary to qualify as a derivative even if the petitioner is not the biological father.  This results from the breadth of the definition of “child” in INA 101(b).  For example, such a child could be considered a stepchild which requires that the child had not reached the age of eighteen years at the time the marriage creating the status of stepchild occurred whether or not born out of wedlock and therefore qualify as a child under INA 101(b)(1)(C).

(b)  (U) Other definitions of “child” such as step-child or adopted child may also create a qualifying relationship in cases where the petitioner is not a biological parent.  Each circumstance must be reviewed on a case-by-case basis that will often involve not only U.S., but foreign laws and potentially international conventions, particularly if there is a biological parent who objects to his or her child going to the United States as the petitioner’s child.  Post should seek an advisory opinion from USCIS via CA/VO/F if there is any question as to whether an I-730 beneficiary qualifies as the petitioner’s child or if there is an objection by the biological parent to the child’s immigration to the United States.

(c)  (U) The beneficiary is not eligible to derive status if:

(i)     (U) He/she is an adopted child whose adoption took place after the age of 16, or who has not been in the legal custody of and living with the adoptive parent(s) for at least two years (there is an exception to the 2 year residence requirement for certain children who have been battered or subjected to extreme cruelty).  See INA 101(b)(1)(E); or

(ii)    (U) He/she is a stepchild from a marriage that occurred after the child was 18 years old.  See INA 101(b)(1)(B).

(4)  (U) Effect of Child Status Protection Act (CSPA) on I-730 Beneficiaries: 

(a)  (U) The Child Status Protection Act (CSPA) (Public Law 107-208, 116 Statute 927, effective August 6, 2002) allows some children reaching the age of 21 to continue being classified as a “child” in order to derive eligibility for asylum or refugee status from a parent.  This provision continues to protect the beneficiary through approval of the Form I-730 until he or she enters the U.S. as a derivative asylee or refugee.  The CSPA applies if the child was under 21 when:

(i)     (U) (For V92) The principal applicant filed his/her I-589, Application for Asylum and Withholding of Removal; or

(ii)    (U) (For V93) The principal applicant was first interviewed by USCIS (the USCIS interview date as indicated in WRAPS is used to calculate CSPA eligibility for V93 beneficiaries, as there is no formal I-590, Registration for Classification as Refugee, filing date in refugee processing); and

(iii)    (U) The child was listed on the I-589 or I-590 (Registration for Classification as Refugee), as appropriate, and the child is unmarried; or

(iv)   (U) The child was not included in his/her parent’s refugee or asylum application, but the child was under 21 when his/her parent filed the I-730, and the child is unmarried.

(b)  (U) Children who turned 21 years of age prior to August 6, 2002 are not covered by the CSPA, unless either the Form I-730 or the petitioner's Form I-589 or I-590 was pending on that date.  If the Form I-730 was approved prior to August 6, 2002, but the beneficiaries had not yet been issued documentation to travel to the United States, the form is still considered to be pending.

(c)  (U) If a child marries after the I-730 was filed with USCIS, eligibility for CSPA protection ends, but a subsequent divorce before the beneficiary travels to the United States can make the individual eligible once again for V92 or V93 status.  The intent of Congress was for CSPA to be ameliorative and thus it is liberally construed.  For example:

(i)     (U) If a beneficiary was unmarried and under 21 at the time of the I-730 filing and adjudication, she or he is eligible for CSPA protection. 

(ii)    (U) If he or she turns 21 and marries before the consular interview, she or he loses CSPA protection.  However, if he or she divorces before the interview, she or he is again eligible for CSPA protection and I-730 benefits. 

(d)  (U) For complete guidance on applying the CSPA to V92/93 processing, see the following USCIS memoranda, both available at USCIS website:

(i)     (U) U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service Memorandum, Processing Derivative Refugees and Asylees under the Child Status Protection Act, HQIAO 120/5.2, dated July 23, 2003; and

(ii)    (U) U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service Memorandum, The Child Status Protection Act -- Children of Asylees and Refugees, HWOPRD 70/6.1, dated August 17, 2004.

(5)  (U) Marriage of Child Beneficiary Prior to Travel:

(a)  (U) Consistent with procedures for immigrant visa derivatives, unmarried children approved as beneficiaries of Form I-730 petitions lose eligibility if they marry after approval of their travel authorization but prior to arrival in the United States.  For this reason, I-730 child beneficiaries aged 14 and older are required to sign a Notice on Pre-Departure Marriage & Declaration at interview to affirm they are unmarried and understand they can no longer derive status from their petitioning parent if they marry before arriving in the United States (see 9 FAM 203.6-5 paragraph a(3)).

(b)  (U) However, if the married child subsequently divorces before traveling to the United States, he or she should be considered eligible, including any applicability of the CSPA, as if the marriage had not occurred.  Per INA 101(a)(39), the term “unmarried” when used in reference to any individual as of any time, means an individual who at such time is not married, whether or not previously married.  As such, a child must be unmarried when he or she “seeks” (in present tense) to accompany or follow to join.  A new I-730 does not need to be filed; the previously approved I-730 may still be used.

(c) (U) Examples:

(i)     (U) If a beneficiary child married after the I-730 was filed and divorced before final adjudication of the I-730 or travel to the United States, that beneficiary is eligible for I-730 benefits;

(ii)    (U) If the beneficiary child was married and divorced before the I-730 was even filed, that beneficiary is eligible for I-730 benefits;

(iii)    (U) If the beneficiary child was married at the time the principal was granted asylum or admitted as a refugee or at the time an I-730 was filed on that beneficiary’s behalf, even if the beneficiary subsequently divorced, that individual is not eligible for I-730 benefits.  See 8 CFR 208.21(b) and 8 CFR 208.7(c), showing that the parent/child relationship must have existed at the time of the petitioner’s asylum grant or refugee admission and “at the time of filing” the I-730).

f.  (U) Other Familial Relationships:  A parent, sister, brother, grandparent, grandchild, uncle, aunt, nephew, niece, cousin, or in-law does not have a qualifying relationship, and is not eligible for V92/V93 status.  In certain circumstances where an individual does not have the requisite relationship to the petitioner in order to qualify for follow-to-join benefits, humanitarian parole may be an option (see 9 FAM 202.3-3(B)(1) for more information on humanitarian parole).

9 FAM 203.5-4(B)  (U) Bars, Inadmissibilities, and Bases for Denial Affecting V92/V93 Beneficiaries

(CT:VISA-1050;   04-17-2020)

a. (U) V92/V93 Bars, Inadmissibilities, Denials - Introduction:

(1)  (U) It is the responsibility of the consular officer to elicit information pertaining to derogatory information to determine if the beneficiary is barred or inadmissible.

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(3)  (U) Paragraph b below addresses a reason to not approve travel that affects both V92 and V93 cases.  However, the basis for not approving cases for travel generally vary depending on whether the case involves a V92 or V93 beneficiary – paragraph c provides an overview of the applicability of various bars and inadmissibilities.  See more detailed information in paragraph d, for issues involving V92 beneficiaries, and paragraph e, for issues involving V93 beneficiaries.

b. (U) Previous Grant of Asylum or Refugee Status for V92/V93 Beneficiary:  Even if a V92/V93 beneficiary is a spouse or unmarried child of the petitioner and meets the criteria for relationship eligibility (see 9 FAM 203.5-4(A)), the beneficiary is not eligible to derive status if he/she was previously granted asylum or refugee status (see INA 207(c)(2)(A) and INA 208(b)(3)(A)).

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(2)  (U) See 9 FAM 203.6-7 for general information on processing V92/V93 cases which may involve bars or inadmissibilities. 

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(4)  (U) V92 Relief Provisions: There are no waivers available for V92 applicants.

(5)  (U) See 9 FAM 203.6-7 for instructions on processing cases which may involve V92 bars or discretionary denials. 

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(3)  (U) See 9 FAM 203.6-7 for instructions on processing cases which may involve V93 bars or inadmissibilities, and for information on waivers for INA 212(a) ineligibilities.

 

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