I-601 Discretionary Factors

Discretionary Factors In Obtaining Approval of an I-601 Waiver

Because the relief afforded by an I-601 waiver is discretionary, an alien must show not only that (s)he meets the statutory requirements and hardship to the qualifying relative, but also that (s)he is worthy of a favorable exercise of discretion. Therefore, a number of factors can either help or hinder the exercise of favorable discretion by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Below is a non-exhaustive list exemplifying the types of positive and negative factors the adjudicators of I-601 waiver applications take into account.

  • Positive Factors
    • Alien voluntarily pursued waiver process
    • Alien had a bona fide and reasonable belief (s)he complied with the law
    • Alien has been married and/or had U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident children for a lengthy period of time
    • Alien has U.S. citizen children in common with the qualifying spouse
    • Alien has been involved in community service or volunteer programs
    • Alien has affidavits attesting to good moral character and exemplary service to others in the community
    • Alien had affidavits from priests, ministers, nuns, etc., who attest (s)he is a valued member of a religious organization
  • Negative Factors
    • Qualifying relative is a native of alien's home country and immigrated to the U.S. as an adult
    • Waiver unavailable to aliens committing similar violations under current law
    • Alien ignored an order of removal or violated voluntary departure
    • Alien previously married to a different U.S. citizen
    • Alien has a significant history of misrepresentations
    • Alien accused at any point of marriage fraud
    • Alien or qualifying spouse/fiancé(e) has multiple previous marriages
    • Alien or qualifying spouse/fiancé(e) divorced immediately preceding current marriage

Contact an Immigration Lawyer in Pittsburgh or Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, New York

To speak to an immigration attorney about your immigration goals, including obtaining a work visa in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland, New York or anywhere in the United States, we welcome you to contact an immigration lawyer online or call 412-291-4400 | 215-880-4977 | 347-839-1700. Free consultations are available. We represent clients throughout the United States, including Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Western Pennsylvania, Eastern Ohio, Allegheny County, and worldwide in Korea, Africa, India, and Pakistan.