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Extreme Hardship: Proving Eligibility for an I-601 Waiver

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How Do You Prove Eligibility For an I-601 Waiver?

For individuals hoping to obtain an I-601 Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility due to extreme hardship, specific steps must be followed to prove eligibility. The USCIS uses these documents to determine if individuals fit the criteria needed for extreme hardship.

However, knowing how and what documents should be gathered can be confusing. For this reason, it is in your best interests to hire a knowledgeable Chicago immigration attorney who can make the process go smoothly.

What is Extreme Hardship?

The USCIS has defined “extreme hardship” as a hardship more significant than what the U.S. relative of the immigrant would experience under normal circumstances if their relative were not permitted to come or stay in the United States.

However, to obtain an I-601 waiver on the basis on hardship there must be, more factors relative to the case than family members simply being separated from one another.

As a result, each application is reviewed on a case-by-case basis to determine if extreme hardship is a factor. The government considers certain factors when determining if an individual should be granted an I-601 waiver.

Qualifying Relationships

Individuals applying for an I-601 waiver on the grounds of extreme hardship must be relatives of U.S. citizens or aliens with lawful permanent residence status and include the following qualifying relationships:

  • Spouse
  • Parent
  • Child

A VAWA petitioner or their child is also eligible to apply for extreme hardship. Individuals must submit evidence that verifies their family relationship, such as a birth or marriage certificate. Additionally, individuals claiming extreme hardship must also show how their denial of admission would affect their qualifying U.S. relative.

Extreme Hardship Documents

Some of the most pertinent documents that must be submitted when applying for extreme hardship considerations include:

  • Affidavits from qualifying relatives or others who can confirm that extreme hardships exist.
  • Financial records that support an extreme hardship claim.
  • Evidence of employment.
  • Evidence of monthly expenditures, including rent or mortgage payments.
  • Medical records or supporting documentation by medical professionals supporting hardship claims.
  • Country-condition reports
  • Any other evidence that may support extreme hardship claims.

For more information about extreme hardship or qualifying relationships, it is best to seek legal help from a knowledgeable immigration attorney who can answer your questions.

Factors Considered For Extreme Hardship

In addition to the documentation that must be submitted for an extreme hardship consideration, there are also specific factors that the USCIS also examines. Some of the most significant factors considered include:

  • Any health considerations, such as specialized or ongoing medical treatment. Other factors taken into account include the duration, availability, and quality of treatment in a foreign country and the need for assistance.
  • Financial issues that should be considered include the ability to obtain employment, a decline in their standard of living, or the expense of caring for family members.
  • Personal considerations include separating close family members, ties to the community, or other family members in the United States.
  • Educational needs including higher education considerations, the scope of available educational options, or disruption to the current program.
  • Unique factors include valid fear of persecution or cultural, religious, language, or ethnic obstacles.

It is critical to remember that each case is evaluated individually based on its unique circumstances.

An Experienced Immigration Attorney Who Can Help You Understand the I-601 Waiver Process

The I-601 waiver is notoriously challenging to obtain. Many factors are taken into consideration by the immigration officer who will be reviewing the case. Because of the complexity of obtaining an I-601 waiver, it is in your best interests to hire a highly qualified lawyer to help you properly prepare.

Providing adequate supporting documentation is one of the most critical aspects of proving extreme hardship in connection with an I-601 waiver. A knowledgeable immigration attorney will be familiar with the documents you need to produce and can ensure they meet the criteria of the USCIS.

If you are trying to obtain an I-601 waiver on the grounds of extreme hardship, you need a lawyer who has extensive experience with immigration law. Contact SwagatUSA, LLC at (312) 854-7065 to schedule a consultation to discuss your case.

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