More information will be forthcoming. Keep in mind, this is early information, and not to be relied upon without consulting with a qualified immigration attorney. However, here is what comprehensive immigration reform might look like for the undocumented, based on the 17 page memo recently released from the Senate’s bill:
The Undocumented – Some will be granted a Registered Provisional Immigrant Status:
- December 31, 2011 is the cut off. People who entered after this date will be ineligible to take advantage of this Registered Provisional Immigrant Status
- Those who are not DREAM Act Eligible will be required to pay a $500 penalty plus any back taxes that are owed. We, at SwagatUSA, have long advised people that even undocumented must file accurate tax returns. It is evident that taxes will be taken into account.
- Those convicted of crimes such as felonies, aggravated felonies, 3 or more misdemeanors, or an offense under foreign law, as well as any who have unlawfully voted in an election will be ineligible.
- Spouses and children will be protected also as derivatives
- Individuals currently outside of the US who were deported, but would have qualified for this status if not for the prior deportation, will be eligible to apply and reenter.
- Those eligible will be able to work and travel outside of the US.
- Individuals in removal proceedings or with removal orders will be eligible as well.
- RPI status does not render one eligible for public means-tested benefits, or premium assistance tax credit.
- Initial approval will be for 6 years, and if good character is proven over this period, it may be renewed again, with another $500 penalty.
People in DREAM Act and Agricultural Program, can get their green cards in 5 years, and DREAM Act kids will be eligible for citizenship immediately upon receiving their green cards.