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USCIS Reverts to Old Policy of Criteria for Interviewing Petitioners Requesting Derivative Refugee and Asylee Status For Family Members

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On December 10, 2021 USCIS rescinded a November 2020 memo that required interviews for all petitioners filing Form I-730 for their derivative family members. The old policy places a significant burden on the asylee and refugee population because in addition to the beneficiary interview, the petitioner also had to be interviewed.

Effective immediately, USCIS will return to its prior long-standing practice of making case-by-case determinations on whether to interview Form I-730 petitioners. However, USCIS reserves its authority to interview any petitioner where USCIS determines there is a need to do so.

An individual admitted to the United States as a principal refugee or granted asylum as a principal asylee may file a Form I-730 petition on behalf of a spouse or child. Eligible spouses or unmarried children may receive derivative refugee or asylee status as Form I-730 beneficiaries. They do not have to qualify independently as principal asylees or refugees, but they must meet the requirements for the relationship to the petitioner and must qualify under all other applicable eligibility criteria, including those related to criminal and security grounds.

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