|Friday, 23 September 2011 09:27|
Social Security Administration update on invalid social security numbers
In its continuing efforts to provide social security number verification, the Social Security Administration (SSA) recently released a list of numbers which indicate that a social security number is not valid. The following is a list of the first three digits of social security numbers which are invalid because they have never been issued or assigned by the SSA: 000, 666, 900, 772, 800, 900. For instance, a Social Security number which begins with 666-xx-xxxx would not be valid.
New USCIS policy allows battered children to apply for immigration benefits up to age 24
A new USCIS policy extends eligibility for abused children to file for immigration benefits under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) through age 24 in certain circumstances. As background, the VAWA law allows eligible battered spouses (male and female), children and parents of U.S. citizens and permanent residents (green card holders) to apply for immigration benefits leading to a green card. In the past, the law limited the age an abused child could file to 21. However, under the new policy, a child may now file for benefits through age 24, by showing evidence that the abuse suffered by the child was at least one reason for the filing delay in seeking immigration benefits.
Border patrol agents increase checks on public transportation, Greyhound and Amtrak
Even with the new kinder & gentler Obama Administration policy towards prosecution of only high priority immigrants, the U.S. Border Patrol continues its enthusiastic efforts to identify and detain illegal immigrants. Most immigrants know that U.S. Border Patrol agents often sweep through airports to conduct immigration checks. What many may not be aware of are the increasingly frequent immigration sweeps being conducted by Border Patrol agents on public transportation sites, most notably Greyhound buses and Amtrak trains. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection says agents have the authority to conduct immigration checks in public places and sweeps on Greyhound buses and Amtrak are meant to disrupt human smuggling activities into the country's interior. However, immigration advocates have seen a sharp rise in crackdowns on undocumented immigrants caught travelling within the U.S. on Greyhound buses. Statistics show that between October 2010 and May 2011, Border Patrol agents in Florida arrested approximately 2,900 undocumented immigrants, which includes arrests made on public transportation, apprehensions through routine highway stops and drug cases. Until these unfortunate enforcement efforts are officially ended, immigrants are advised to be cautious when using public transportation, specifically Greyhound buses, understand the risks and take all precautions necessary to ensure your safe travel.
Question: I'm an American and sponsored my wife for her green card a few years ago and she got a two-year temporary residency. We had marriage problems, I admit a lot was my fault, and we are divorcing. My wife says that we need to apply for her 10-year permanent green card before the end of the two years. I want to help her in any way possible and hire you to take care of the case, so I need to know what we need to do from here. Will I be filing this case together with her or how does this work? I am worried that she may lose her immigration status in the U.S. because of our divorce.
Answer: Great question and important information for readers to know. When a U.S. Citizen sponsors a spouse for residency and the couple is married for less than two years at the Immigration Residency Interview, the foreign spouse only receives a two-year conditional Green Card. Three months before the green card expires, a joint application is required to be filed by the couple along with crucial documentation to prove that the couple continues to be married and living together in a real marriage. However, when a couple is no longer together, only the foreign spouse files the application, with a special request for a "Waiver" of the joint filing requirement. In these circumstances, the law requires that the foreign spouse be divorced before filing the application, and presents extensive proof that the marriage was entered into for love and not simply for immigration purposes. Our firm prepares petitions which satisfy these stringent requirements and provides guidance on the types of documentation that the USCIS requires in these circumstances. In your case, your wife's application can only be filed after the divorce is finalized. You can assist by bringing the documentation on the list provided and affidavits from yourself and even other family members attesting to the genuine nature of your marriage.
** Contributions to this Column are made by Attorney Caroly Pedersen, Esq. of the American Immigration Law Center – Call 954-382-5378
|Last Updated on Friday, 23 September 2011 11:12|