A relatively little known provision of the federal immigration law, called Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), allows certain noncitizen children who have been abused, neglected, or abandoned by one or both parents to obtain lawful permanent resident (LPR) status.1 For an eligible child, obtaining LPR status through SIJS can be life changing in terms of the stability it provides. Children who obtain LPR status through SIJS are protected from deportation, can live and work in the United States permanently, can apply for U.S. citizenship after 5 years, can obtain a Social Security number and a Minnesota driver’s license, and are eligible for certain public benefits including financial aid for college and Medical Assistance.
Many children may not realize that they could be eligible for this important benefit; some age out of eligibility and miss this opportunity. The purpose of this Practice Tip is to provide information about the SIJS requirements and process, and to equip readers to identify potentially eligible children and assist them in accessing immigration legal help. Read More>>
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December Tip of the Month – Special Immigrant Juvenile Status
Submitted by: Rebecca Scholtz, Liman Fellow and Attorney, Mid-Minnesota Legal Aid