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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

USCIS BEGINS ACCEPTING CONCURRENTLY FILED I-360/I-485 PETITIONS FOR RELIGIOUS WORKERS

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Good news for religious workers who now get the same benefit available to I-140 applicants.

USCIS Notice June 26, 2009

Court Notice to Pending I-360s Applicants

Ruiz-Diaz v. U.S., No. C07-1881RSL (W.D. Wash.)

Introduction

On June 11, 2009, the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington issued
an order in Ruiz-Diaz v. U.S., No. C07-1881RSL (W.D. Wash.). The court found that 8 CFR
245.2(a)(2)(i)(B), which does not allow religious workers to concurrently file an Application to
Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (Form I-485), was invalid and unenforceable.

The court ordered USCIS to accept a properly filed I-485 and I-765 from a beneficiary of a
religious worker I-360. The court order also allows individuals whose concurrent filings were
previously rejected to reapply for adjustment of status. The order accords a spouse and children
of I-360 beneficiaries the same benefits. Below is the court notice regarding the decision and
information about the filing of applications for individuals with pending I-360s.

Notice

According to our records, you have a pending Form I-360 religious worker petition with USCIS
and may be eligible for benefits under Ruiz-Diaz v. United States, No. C07-1881RSL (W.D.
Wash. June 11, 2009).

Persons with pending Form I-360 religious worker petitions are immediately eligible to file a
Form I-485 and/or Form I-765. Individuals whose applications are properly filed with
appropriate filing fees and supporting documentation with USCIS by September 9, 2009 will
have any period of unlawful presence or unauthorized employment tolled until USCIS issues a
final administrative decision. Failure to file prior to September 9, 2009, will result in the
accrual of unlawful presence or unauthorized employment time.

Persons who want to file an Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (Form
I-485) and/or an Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765)1 must mail the
applications, with the required fees, to:

California Service Center
P.O. Box 10485
Laguna Niguel, CA 92677-1048

1 Applicants may also file an Application for Travel Document, Form I-131, as long as they are eligible and properly
file the application.

-more -
 
Page 2

Any person who has a Form I-360 religious worker petition pending with USCIS as of June 11,
2009, will have any period of unlawful presence that began accruing as of the date of filing of
the I-360 tolled until September 9, 2009. In addition, any period of unauthorized
employment that occurred after filing of the I-360 will be tolled until September 9, 2009.
Persons who properly file the Form I-485 and Form I-765 applications on or after June 11, 2009
and have their applications received by USCIS prior to September 9, 2009 also will have the
accrual of unlawful presence and unlawful employment tolled until USCIS issues a final
administrative decision.

Spouses and children who are the beneficiaries of properly filed Forms I-360 by religious
workers may be accorded the same status and order of consideration as the principal, unless the
spouse and child are already entitled to another immigrant status and immediate issuance of a
visa under section 203(a), (b), or (c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C.
1153(a), (b), or (c).

For additional information please see the USCIS webpage at www.uscis.gov.

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