BY Attorney Kuldeep S. Kasari

On November 6, 1986 the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 became law which extends lawful status to great number of aliens who have resided and worked in the United States without permission from Immigration and Naturalization Services. Under the act, the legalization of aliens is structured in two steps, under the first step the Temporary Residence Status is granted for a limited time period and. Permanent Status is granted at step two. Aliens who satisfy the substantive and procedural requirements of both step one and step two will ultimately be issued a Green Card.

Under Temporary Residence, a person may leave the United States without permission from the Immigration and Naturalization Services for a period not to exceed 30 days during a Single trip. The Temporary Resident should not leave the United States for an aggregate period of 90 days. Those who became Temporary Residents on the basis of Agricultural Work in the United States do not have the above limits in their absences, but they should not leave the United States for a longer period of time.

Temporary Residents must avoid all activities which could get them into trouble of arrest and convictions of crimes. If the Temporary Residents are arrested and convicted of a misdemeanor or of a felony, this could have a serious effect on their immigration status. If they are arrested by the police they should not plead guilty, they should consult an attorney who understands both criminal and immigration law. Temporary Resident Status should not receive benefits from government such as welfare and food stamps. They may obtain emergency medical and unemployment compensation. You should keep Immigration and Naturalization Services informed of any change of address.

If you obtain your Temporary Resident Status because you lived in the United States in an illegal status prior to 1982 you are eligible to apply for Permanent Residence one and one half years from the date you became Temporary Resident. You have one year within which to file application for Permanent Residence, If you fail to file an application for Permanent Residence Status during this time, you will lose Temporary Residence Status during this time and will return to unlawful status, When you apply for Permanent Residence Status, you will have to prove that you are taking classes to learn English, United States History and understanding the government or you would have to take a test on these subjects, Applicants over the age of sixty five or under fourteen can be excused from this requirement, If you do not want to take the test on the above subjects, I advise you to enroll in classes right now to study the above subjects. Aliens who obtained Temporary Residence as Special Agricultural Workers are exempt from this requirement. You would also have to prove that you were living continuously in the United States from the date you became Temporary Resident to the date of your application for Permanent Residence. You are advised to keep every document to prove your continuous stay in the United States.

Note: Kuldip Singh Kasuri is an Attorney at Law, admitted to practice in New York, Pennsylvania and the Supreme Court of United States of America. He has wide range of experience in headline immigration matters.

Any questions regarding legal matters could be addressed to Kuldip S. Kasuri c/o World Sikh News.

The article discusses general issues. For individual cases please consult an attorney.

Article extracted from this publication >> October 14, 1988