U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) reinstated an Immigrant Visa Petition (Form I-130) that had been automatically revoked upon the petitioner’s death. The family petition was filed by the late Mr. Sanchez*, a U.S. citizen, who had filed the petition on his brother’s behalf. Mr. Sanchez’ brother resided in the Philippines with his wife and son, and they had been waiting for years for their opportunity to immigrate to the United States.
Tragically though, the petitioner passed away prior to his brother and his family being issued their immigrant visas. Mr. Sanchez’ death was devastating not just because of the passing of a beloved family member, but also because it meant that the visa petition previously filed by Mr. Sanchez was no longer valid. Rather, it was revoked automatically upon Mr. Sanchez’ death.
Mr. Sanchez’ family consulted with our office and desperately asked if there was anything we could do to help. We sat down with the family, who was still mourning the loss of Mr. Sanchez, and explained that we could submit a request for the petition to be reinstated based on humanitarian grounds. We explained that requests for Humanitarian Reinstatement were challenging, and that we would all have to work very hard for such a request to be approved by USCIS. Mr. Sanchez’ family was determined to reunite their remaining family in the United States, so we immediately start working on our request.
We discussed Mr. Sanchez’ lengthy residence in the U.S., as well as that of the rest of the family. We talked about how the family bonds were strong, and though Mr. Sanchez was no longer alive, there were still many other family members who had been looking forward to the family finally being able to reunite in the United States after being apart from decades. We also talked about why Mr. Sanchez’ brother deserved a favorable exercise of discretion, including his volunteer work, regular church attendance, and his lack of a criminal record.
We were thrilled when we received the news from USCIS that our request for Humanitarian Reinstatement had been granted! After waiting for more than 25 years, our clients’ dream of becoming a permanent resident in the U.S. was finally about to come true. He would be reunited with his family as he started a whole new life!
*Please note that the names have been changed to protect our clients’ privacy.