Uniting for Ukraine Aims to Aid Ukrainians Fleeing Russia’s Invasion23 May 2022
At the directive of President Biden, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has implemented a program, titled Uniting for Ukraine, designed to help Ukrainians fleeing from Russia’s invasion. The program is intended to provide a streamlined process for Ukrainians to apply for humanitarian parole. Humanitarian parole is a discretionary benefit that may be granted to allow a foreign national to enter for a temporary period due to urgent humanitarian reasons. Eligibility criteria and details are shared here, by the Murthy Law Firm, to help eligible candidates seek this benefit.
To seek humanitarian parole through the Uniting for Ukraine program, the individual must be a Ukrainian citizen who meets all of the following:
- Holds a valid Ukrainian passport
- Is currently outside of the United States
- Resided in Ukraine as of February 11, 2022 (immediately before the start of the Russian invasion)
- Has been displaced because of the invasion
If the beneficiary is not a Ukrainian citizen, then the individual must possess a valid passport and be an immediate family member of a Ukrainian citizen beneficiary of Uniting for Ukraine.
U.S.-Based Financial Supporter Required
Another requirement for this program is that the Ukrainian citizen must be financially sponsored by a U.S.-based supporter. A supporter must be an individual who holds lawful status in the United States and is able to pass security and background vetting to ensure the financial support of the beneficiary for the foreign national’s duration of stay in the United States. It is possible for one individual to support multiple beneficiaries; similarly, multiple supporters may combine financial resources to support a single beneficiary.
Filing the I-134 Declaration of Financial Support
To apply, the supporter should file an online declaration of financial support (form I-134) on behalf of the beneficiary. Once the USCIS approves the I-134, the beneficiary will receive an eMail from the USCIS with instructions on how to proceed, including obtaining biographic information of the beneficiary and other requirements. There is no fee to file the I-134 form through Uniting for Ukraine.
Uniting for Ukraine supports the Biden Administration’s goal of not only providing support for the people of Ukraine, but also Ukraine’s European neighbors, who continue to provide safety for displaced Ukrainians. As stated by U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro N. Mayorkas, “DHS will continue to provide relief to the Ukrainian people, while supporting our European allies who have shouldered so much as the result of Russia’s brutal invasion of Ukraine.” We thank the Administration for making this opportunity possible. We hope that many Ukrainians and their eligible family members will take advantage of this provision to seek humanitarian parole in the U.S. during this inconceivably stressful time.
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