U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced a new process that allows certain Venezuelan nationals and immediate family members to come to the United States.
The new Process for Venezuelans is intended to provide a safe and orderly way for people from Venezuela who are outside the U.S. and lack U.S. entry documents to be considered, on a case-by-case basis, for advance authorization to travel and a temporary period of parole for up to 2 years for urgent humanitarian reasons and significant public benefit. To encourage applicants, the government has stated that there are no government filing fees associated with this process and U.S.-based supporters are allowed to sponsor more than one Venezuelan national.
To initiate the process the U.S.-based supporter must file a Declaration of Financial Support with USCIS for each Venezuelan national or immediate family member. The U.S. government will then vet the supporter’s application to ensure they are able to support the Venezuelan national they agree to support. The Venezuelan national and immediate family members will need to use USCIS Online Accounts and the CBP One Mobile Application to submit personal information to the government.
Approved applications will receive notification through their USCIS Online Accounts stating that the Venezuelan nationals are authorized for travel to the U.S. within 90 days. Following successful entry using the Process for Venezuelans, an individual can apply for an Employment Authorization Document.
For details on the eligibility criteria please visit the Process for Venezuelans page on the USCIS website. https://www.uscis.gov/venezuela.
As there are only 24,000 slots initially available under this program prospective sponsors should not delay. While the new Process for Venezuelans is free of government fees, we have observed that there are many legal nuances and logistical hurdles involved in navigating the multiple agency applications. We encourage U.S. financial supporters and prospective Venezuelan applicants seeking to initiate the process to contact Gee & Zhang, LLP.