Death of US Petitioner (visa sponsor) – procedure for making a request for humanitarian reinstatement of I-130 petitions that have been revoked based on the death of the petitioner

Previously we reported about the new procedures affecting surviving spouses of US petitioners that passed away. Now the Vermont Service Center issued some guidance on the procedure for making a request for humanitarian reinstatement of I-130 petitions that have been revoked based on the death of the petitioner.

The process for requesting humanitarian reinstatement consideration begins with the
notification to either the Service Center or the National Visa Center of the death of the
petitioner. If the death certificate is accompanied by a letter indicating that the beneficiary wishes to be considered for humanitarian reinstatement, the Service Center will respond with a letter confirming that the petition has been automatically revoked (8 CFR 205.1(a)(3)(C)). The letter then provides a list of requirements that must be met to have the petition considered for humanitarian reinstatement under 8 CFR 205.1(a)(3)(C)(2).

In order for the reinstatement to be considered, the following documents must be provided:

The request for reinstatement must be in writing by the beneficiary of the original petition or
substitute sponsor if the beneficiary is a minor child.

– Provide as much available documentation to identify and document the humanitarian reason for reinstatement. Such documentation may include, but is not limited to:
a. Evidence of a long-time residence and any equity in the U.S.

b. Evidence of relationship to other family members with evidence of their immigration status in the U.S.

c. Evidence of health-related factors that would establish the need for the reinstatement of the petition.

d. Evidence of current political or religious conditions in the beneficiary’s country of origin that would indicate that the beneficiary would suffer if not permitted to immigrate to the U.S.

Please note: Economic depression, as is found in many regions of the world, is not considered to be an example of a harsh result contrary to the goal of family reunification unless it is of such an extreme nature as to possibly cause physical harm to the beneficiary.

– The new sponsor is required to submit an original Form I-864, Affidavit of Support, to show that he or she has adequate means of financial support and that the beneficiary of the petition is not likely to become a public charge.

a. The substitute sponsor must complete the Form I-864, Affidavit of Support.

b. The Form I-864 must contain an original signature of the sponsor.

c. The new sponsor must be an immediate family member or a legal guardian of the
beneficiary, such as a spouse, parent, mother-in-law, father-in-law, sibling, child, son, daughter, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, sister-in-law, brother-in-law, grandparent, or grandchild child at least 18 years of age.

d. Submit evidence that will establish the new sponsor’s immigration status or U.S. citizenship.

Other documentation;
a. The petitioner’s death certificate.

b. The initial approval notice.

c. Any correspondence received from the Department of State or the National Visa Center.

d. Evidence of the relationship between the new sponsor and the beneficiary.

– If the death certificate submitted indicates that the lawful permanent resident (LPR) petitioner
died while outside of the United States, you must establish that it was not the intent of the petitioner to abandon his or her LPR status. See Matter of Abdoulin, 17 I & N Dec. 458 (BIA 1980) and Matter of Abdelhadi, 15 I & N Dec. 383 (BIA 1975).

Such evidence may include but is not limited to:
– Evidence of a plan for a return to the United States,
– Evidence of an un-relinquished domicile in the United States, or
– Evidence of continued ties to the United States.

If it is determined that a request for reinstatement does not meet the statutory and regulatory requirements, any subsequent request will require the filing of a formal motion for reconsideration accompanied by the appropriate motion fee.

Make sure to consult an experienced immigration attorney about your options in such cases.