President Biden Announces Executive Action to Protect Families of U.S. Citizens And Young Noncitizens with College Degrees

On June 18, 2024, President Biden announced a new process that will help certain noncitizen spouses and children of citizens apply for lawful permanent residence without having to leave the United States to qualify. The noncitizen spouses and children that this process aims to help are already eligible to apply for lawful permanent residence under the current U.S. immigration laws, but face excessive processing times with the United States Immigration and Citizenship Service and their certain departure from the U.S. to their country of citizenship for a U.S. consular interview. The new process will be available to those who: have continuously resided in the U.S. since June 17, 2014; were physically present in the U.S. on June 17, 2024; have been legally married to a U.S. citizen as of June 17, 2024; do not currently hold any lawful immigrant or nonimmigrant status; have not been convicted of any disqualifying crime; do not pose a threat to national security or public safety; and merit a favorable exercise of discretion.

Eligible noncitizen spouses and children will have the opportunity to apply for “parole-in-place” status from the Department of Homeland Security. The Department of Homeland Security will review the applications on a case-by-case basis. Those who are approved for “parole-in-place,” or in other words are “paroled” into the U.S., will receive legal protection from deportation and work authorization for up to three years. More importantly, the individuals granted “parole-in-place” status will be eligible to apply for lawful permanent residence within the U.S. and without having to leave to their country of citizenship for a U.S. consular interview. This process will affect an estimated 500,000 noncitizen spouses and 50,000 noncitizen children of U.S. citizens.

President Biden also announced that recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), and other individuals who arrived in the U.S. as children who have earned a degree at an accredited U.S. institution of higher education while in the United States, and who have received an offer of employment from a U.S. employer in a field related to their degree, will be able to more quickly receive work visas. Once these individuals receive a work visa, they will be eligible to apply for lawful permanent residence.

The President’s announcement anticipates the application process will open by the end of the summer. That is, of course, if the President’s Executive Order does not face legal challenges.

The immigration proccess is multifaceted and requires a deep understanding of immigration laws and procedures. At Reid & Hellyer, our experienced immigration lawyers in our Murrieta, CA office are dedicated to providing knowledgeable and compassionate legal assistance to individuals and families seeking immigration solutions through the process. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards achieving your immigration goals with confidence. Our office may be reached at (951) 695-8700, or email Meraz Ibarra


Author: Ednna M. Ibarra, Esq. is an associate attorney in the Murrieta office of Reid & Hellyer, APC, a law firm servicing the Inland Empire since 1897. Ms. Ibarra practices immigration law, as well as estate planning, trust administration, probate and business law, and is fluent in Spanish.

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