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U.S President allows legal status for 500,000 illegal immigrants married to its citizens

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President Biden of the United States (U.S.) has unveiled a major immigration initiative designed to offer legal status and a streamlined pathway to U.S. residency and citizenship for approximately half a million illegal immigrants married to American citizens.

President Biden stated that these measures would take effect “later this summer.”

This new policy will allow eligible immigrant spouses and children of U.S. citizens, who have resided in the country for at least a decade, to apply for lawful permanent residence without the current requirement of leaving the U.S. first—a process that could previously separate families for years.

Previously, marrying a U.S. citizen qualifies an immigrant for a green card, but existing laws require those who entered the U.S. illegally to exit and re-enter legally for eligibility.

This new policy allows eligible immigrants to bypass this exit, avoiding a potential 10-year ban due to their previous illegal stay.

This program, known as “Parole in Place,” enables these immigrants to seek work permits and deportation protection, provided they have been in the U.S. for at least 10 years among other criteria.

The program mandates undocumented spouses to submit the necessary paperwork and clear a criminal background check but does not extend to future migrants.

President Biden declared this from the White House saying,

“Today I’m announcing a common-sense fix to streamline the process for obtaining legal status for immigrants married to American citizens who live here and have lived here for a long time”.

He added, “For those wives or husbands and their children who have lived in America for a decade or more but are undocumented, this action will allow them to file the paperwork for legal status in the United States.

The administration anticipates that around 500,000 unauthorized immigrants with U.S. citizen spouses will be eligible for the Parole in Place program. Those posing a national security or public safety risk will be ineligible.

This announcement coincided with the 12th anniversary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, initiated by President Obama, which provided deportation protections.

However, a Texas federal judge recently deemed DACA unlawful, halting new applications.

President Biden’s policy aims to facilitate a pathway to permanent residency or a green card, and eventually U.S. citizenship.

If legally upheld, this would become the largest federal initiative to protect undocumented migrants since DACA.

In his remarks, President Biden criticized his predecessor and 2024 opponent, emphasizing that the U.S. can simultaneously secure its borders and offer pathways to citizenship.

In his remarks, President Biden criticized his predecessor and 2024 opponent, emphasizing that the U.S. can simultaneously secure its borders and offer pathways to citizenship.

“The Statue of Liberty is not some relic of American history. It still stands for who we are. But I also refuse to believe that to continue to embrace immigration, we have to stop securing our border. 

“We can secure the border and provide legal pathways to citizenship. We have to acknowledge that the patience and goodwill of the American people is being tested by their fears at the border. They don’t understand a lot of it. These are the fears my predecessor is trying to play on.” time can trigger a 10-year ban, leading many mixed-status families to not pursue this process.

The Biden administration’s policy would allow eligible immigrants to obtain a green card without having to leave the U.S. After 5 years of living in the U.S. as a green card holder, immigrants can apply for American citizenship.

The president blasted his predecessor and 2024 opponent, insisting the U.S. can both secure the border and provide pathways to citizenship.

“The Statue of Liberty is not some relic of American history,” Mr. Biden said. “It stands, still stands, for who we are. But I also refuse to believe that for us to continue to be an America that embraces immigration, we have to give up securing our border. They’re false choices. We can both secure the border and provide legal pathways to citizenship. We have to acknowledge that the patience and goodwill of the American people is being tested by their fears at the border. They don’t understand a lot of it. These are the fears my predecessor is trying to play on.”

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