Health-Related Grounds Of Inadmissibility
USCIS may provide waivers for some medical grounds of inadmissibility under INA 212(g) and other provisions governing the specific immigration benefit the applicant is seeking.
Background: A medical evaluation is typically mandatory for most immigrant visa applicants, select nonimmigrant visa applicants, refugees, and those applying for an adjustment of status. The primary purpose of this medical examination is to assess whether an applicant has any medical conditions that could make them ineligible for entry into the United States.
Scope: If a candidate is ineligible due to a medical condition, there may be a possibility of obtaining a waiver. The eligibility for a waiver is determined by the specific legal regulations related to the immigration benefit sought by the applicant.
Who qualifies: To be eligible for the waiver, the applicant must be one of the following:
- The spouse, parent, child, unmarried son or daughter, or minor unmarried lawfully adopted child of:
- A U.S. citizen,
- A person lawfully admitted for permanent residence, or
- A person who has been issued an immigrant visa.
- Eligible for classification as a self-petitioning spouse or child.
- The fiancé(e) of a U.S. citizen or the fiancé(e)’s child.
USCIS possesses the authority to make discretionary decisions regarding the potential waiver of inadmissibility due to a communicable disease with public health implications. USCIS is permitted to grant such a waiver, taking into consideration any applicable terms, conditions, or controls, as deemed appropriate by USCIS in consultation with the Secretary of HHS. This could encompass granting a waiver contingent upon the payment of a bond.
Upon confirming that an applicant is inadmissible due to a communicable disease of public health significance and requires a waiver, the officer must follow these steps to evaluate the waiver application:
- Assess whether the applicant meets the eligibility criteria for the waiver.
- Engage in consultation with CDC.
- Determine whether it is justified to grant the waiver at the officer’s discretion.
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