Special visas are available for certain noncitizens due to their work or efforts to assist the United States with military missions or operations abroad. Those who help the United States from their home countries risk harm to themselves and their families, and the special immigrant visa program is a way to offer permanent protection for them. If you have legal questions, then it is important that you speak to an attorney.
What is the Afghan Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) Program?
U.S. Congress created and enacted the Afghan Special Immigrant Visa Program back in 2009. Under this program, tens of thousands of Afghan nationals are eligible for entry visas to the United States and may apply for Lawful Permanent Resident (green card) status upon admission to the United States. This status allows the individual to live and work in the United States, and once five years have passed, it will allow the individual to seek U.S. citizenship.
Who is Eligible Under the Special Immigrant Visa Program for Afghan Nationals?
Any Afghan national that the United States employed in Afghanistan as an interpreter or translator can apply for a special immigrant visa. This individual can also petition for their spouse and any unmarried children under the age of 21. Since 2014, approximately 16,000 Afghan nationals have been issued a Special Immigrant Visa, while some 18,000 are still waiting for processing.
There have been historic backlogs of cases for visas, and the Biden administration has recently announced a new ‘Priority 2' designation which would expand the eligibility of Afghan nationals who did not qualify for a special immigrant visa. On July 23, 2021, an additional 8,000 special immigrant visas were allocated under the Emergency Security Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021, bringing the total amount to 34,500 visas available.
Get Professional Assistance
If you have immigration questions, then it is important that you speak to an experienced attorney. At Mykyta Law, we are proud to offer free consultations. To schedule a consultation with one of our legal professionals, call us at (646) 884-3319 or contact us online.