Since April 2022, the United States has provided fleeing Ukrainian citizens and their immediate family members a pathway to residing in the United States for a two-year period of parole. You should note, however, that the Ukrainian citizen must have a supporter in the United States who can provide them with financial support for the duration of their stay in the U.S. and meet certain other qualifications. Please continue reading and reach out to our New York immigration lawyers to learn more about the Uniting for Ukraine initiative and what it may mean for you. Here are some of the questions you may have:
Who is eligible?
If you have a supporter and resided in Ukraine immediately before the Russian invasion, are a Ukrainian citizen and have a valid Ukrainian passport, or are an immediate family member of a Ukrainian citizen beneficiary of Uniting for Ukraine with a valid passport, you should be eligible for parole here in the United States. You should also note that if you are a Ukrainian citizen who is already present in the United States, you will be ineligible for parole, but you may be eligible for Temporary Protected Status here in the United States.
How do I apply?
First, your U.S.-based supporter will have to file an I-134A, Online Request to be a Support and Declaration of Financial Support, with USCIS. The supporter will then have to be vetted to ensure they have the financial means to support the individual in question. In some cases, USCIS may request additional supporting documentation before determining whether a person qualifies. As long as Form I-34A is sufficient, you should receive an email from USCIS with instructions regarding setting up a myUSCIS account, confirming your biographic information, and completing all requirements. Some of these requirements include:
- An attestation certifying family relationship requirements for minor children under the age of 18
- Confirmation that you’ve completed all vaccine requirements or are eligible for an exception to certain vaccine requirements
Once you arrive in the United States, you will need to confirm that you’ve received a medical screening for tuberculosis within 90 days.
After completing the aforementioned steps, you’ll receive an email telling you to check your myUSCIS account to see if you’ve received approval to travel to the United States. As long as you are approved for parole under Uniting for Ukraine, you will have to arrange and fund your travel to the United States within 90 days.
Once you arrive, you need not wait for approval to work in the United States; proof that you are here for parole under Uniting for Ukraine (an unexpired Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, with a class of admission (COA) of “UHP”) is sufficient.