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Immigration Relief Measures for Individuals Affected by Sandy

It is well known that natural disasters are likely to affect the lawful status of the individuals in the United States. Similarly, natural disasters may also prevent them from obtaining immigration benefits. Hence to help people who are impacted by Hurricane Sandy, USCIS has announced few relief measures and requires the people to make use of the immigration benefits that are made available.

According to the USCIS, individuals who are already granted parole may file applications for an extension or re-parole. Applications for work permits, filed by F-1 students will be expedited. Similarly, USCIS will quickly adjudicate the employment authorization applications, filed by few others. It will also assist the Green Card holders, who are stranded abroad and who are unable to return to the United States, without Green Cards and other immigration papers. USCIS will work together with the US Department of State, to help those who are left behind in places where there are no USCIS offices. USCIS will also allow foreign nationals to file applications to change or extend their non-immigrant status, while in the United States, even if their non-immigrant visas are expired.

Apart from that, USCIS will help people who have not appeared for interviews due to the hurricane. However, the applicant who was not able to appear for the scheduled interview, will have to submit evidence and prove that the hurricane prevented him from reporting for the interview. Similarly, USCIS will not deny the applications of individuals who are unable to submit supporting documents and who are unable to respond to Requests For Evidence, sent by the USCIS. USCIS has extended the deadline and such individuals who had received RFEs, will have to respond before 26th, November, 2012.

Likewise, people who are traveling under the Visa Waiver Program, will have to visit the local USCIS offices, if they are in need of help. Victims of the hurricane, who are at the US airports and who need assistance, may get in touch with the CBP offices.

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