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November 18, 2020
USCIS updates policy manual for Green Card Case Interviews

USCIS makes an update to the Policy Manual instructing its officers what are the Positive and Negative Factors to consider in Family-based, Asylee and Work-Based Green Card Interviews 

USCIS makes an update to the Policy Manual instructing its officers what are the Positive and Negative Factors to consider in Family-based, Asylee and Work-Based Green Card Interviews 

(USCIS Policy Manual – Volume 7, Chapter 10).

Issues and Factors to Consider in the Totality of the Circumstances

The following table provides a non-exhaustive list of factors or factual circumstances that officers generally should consider in exercising discretion with respect to an application for adjustment of status to that of LPR.

Non-Exhaustive List of Issues and Factors to Consider Related to the Exercise of Discretion in Adjustment Applications

Eligibility Requirements:

  1. Meeting the eligibility requirements for adjustment of status.
  2. Not meeting the eligibility requirements may still be considered as part of a discretionary analysis.

Family and Community Ties:

  1. Family ties to the United States and the closeness of the underlying relationships.
  2. Hardship to the applicant or close relatives if the adjustment application is denied.
  3. Length of lawful residence in the United States, status held and conduct during that residence, particularly if the applicant began his or her residency at a young age.
  4. Absence of close family, community, and residence ties.

Immigration Status and History:

  1. Compliance with immigration laws and the conditions of any immigration status held.
  2. Approved humanitarian-based immigrant or nonimmigrant petition, waiver of inadmissibility, or other form of relief and the underlying humanitarian, hardship, or other factors that resulted in the approval.
  3. Violations of immigration laws and the conditions of any immigration status held.
  4. Current or previous instances of fraud or false testimony in dealings with USCIS or any government agency.
  5. Unexecuted exclusion, deportation, or removal orders.

Business, Employment, and Skills:

  1. Property, investment, or business ties in the United States.
  2. Employment history, including type, length, and stability of the employment.[34]
  3. Education, specialized skills, and training obtained from an educational institution in the United States relevant to current or prospective employment and earning potential in the United States.
  4. History of unemployment or underemployment.
  5. Unauthorized employment in the United States.
  6. Employment or income from illegal activity or sources, including, but not limited to, income gained illegally from drug sales, illegal gambling, prostitution, or alien smuggling.

Community Standing and Moral Character:

  1. Respect for law and order, and good moral character (in the United States and abroad) demonstrated by a lack of a criminal record and evidence of good standing in the community.
  2. Honorable service in the U.S. armed forces or other evidence of value and service to the community.
  3. Compliance with tax laws.
  4. Current or past cooperation with law enforcement authorities.
  5. Demonstration of reformed or rehabilitated criminal conduct, where applicable.
  6. Community service beyond any imposed by the courts.
  7. Moral depravity or criminal tendencies (in the United States and abroad) reflected by a single serious crime or an active or long criminal record, including the nature, seriousness, and recent occurrence of criminal violations.
  8. Lack of reformation of character or rehabilitation.
  9. Public safety or national security concerns.
  10. Failure to meet tax obligations.
  11. Failure to pay child support.
  12. Failure to comply with any applicable civil court orders.

Other:

  1. Absence of significant undesirable or negative factors and other indicators of good moral character in the United States and abroad.
  2. Other indicators adversely reflecting the applicant’s character and undesirability as an LPR of this country.

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