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New Green Card Eligibility for Certain Liberians

As of December 26, 2019, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will accept green card (adjustment of status) applications from certain Liberian nationals. The spouses, unmarried children under 21, and unmarried sons and daughters 21 or older of eligible Liberian nationals are also eligible for derivative green cards.

To be eligible, a Liberian national must meet all of the following criteria:

  1. Have been continuously physically present in the United States from Nov. 20, 2014, to the date they properly file an application for adjustment of status;
  2. File the application with USCIS on or before Dec. 20, 2020; AND
  3. Are otherwise eligible to receive an immigrant visa and admissible to the United States.

Importantly, even Liberian nationals who have entered the U.S. illegally (i.e., without admission or parole) or are present in the U.S. illegally are eligible for this benefit. Liberian nationals also cannot be disqualified on public charge grounds (i.e., they have received or are likely to receive public benefits), nor do they need to meet labor certification requirements for employment-based applications.

On the other hand, Liberian nationals are not eligible for this green card if they have been convicted of any aggravated felony or two or more crimes involving moral turpitude; or if they have participated in certain types of persecution of other persons.

The legal basis for this eligibility arises under Section 7611 of the National Defense Authorization Act (PDF) for Fiscal Year 2020, Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness (LRIF), signed into law on Dec. 20, 2019.

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