Integrity Legal

13th July 2009

There is some confusion regarding the American State Department’s estimates regarding visa denials from around the world. There are some who are under the mistaken impression that the State Department’s numbers are the definitive source for information regarding waivers of inadmissibility. In fact, any numbers published by the United States Department of State regarding I-601 waivers should be taken with a grain of salt because the American Department of State is not the agency tasked with handling the adjudication of I-601 waiver applications after the a United States Consular Officer at an Embassy or Consulate General has made a finding that a legal ground of inadmissibility exists in a particular Immigration case.

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) has the authority to grant waivers of inadmissibility under United States Immigration law. Therefore, USCIS’s internal statistics would be the proper government source to consult regarding the number waivers of inadmissibility applied for and ultimately granted. That being said, USCIS does not keep categorical statistics according to the Agenda of the USCIS National Stakeholder Meeting on January 27, 2009:

“Although we track the total number of Forms I-601 processed, USCIS International Operations does not have a system to track the specific grounds of inadmissibility that applicants seek to waive.”

The document that is causing the confusion regarding visa denials can be found at the following url. The first major cause of confusion in this document is the seemingly small number of findings of legal inadmissibility under section 212 (a)(2)(D)(i) for engaging in acts of prostitution or deriving profits from activities that are presumed to be prostitution. According to the table there were only 2 non-immigrant visa waivers granted in 2008 under section 212 (a)(2)(D)(i) of the United States Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). I find this number difficult to believe as this author has recently discussed the prostitution ground of legal inadmissibility with two highly experienced United States Immigration attorneys and between the two of them, they had applied for and obtained more than 2 non-immigrant visa waivers in 2008. Further, I believe it is highly likely that other prospective US Immigrants and non-immigrants were granted waivers of this ground of inadmissibility because I doubt that only two United States attorneys handled all of the waivers granted under this section of the INA in 2008; particularly if one takes into account not only other immigration attorneys, but I-601 waiver applications filed pro se as well.

For more on US Visas Please See: K-1 Visa or K-3 Visa

(This document is not intended as a source of legal advice, but for educational purposes. For legal advice contact an Attorney. No Lawyer-Client relationship should be deemed to exist between the writer and reader of this blog post.)


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