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S. 527 (113th): Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act of 2013

The text of the bill below is as of Mar 12, 2013 (Introduced).


II

113th CONGRESS

1st Session

S. 527

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

March 12, 2013

(for himself,Mr. Whitehouse,Mr. Cardin,Ms. Klobuchar,Mr. Franken,Ms. Warren, andMr. Cowan) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to theCommittee on the Judiciary

A BILL

To provide for the adjustment of status of certain nationals of Liberia to that of lawful permanent residents.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act of 2013 .

2.

Adjustment of status

(a)

Adjustment of status

(1)

In general

(A)

Eligibility

Except as provided undersubparagraph (B), theSecretary of Homeland Securityshall adjust the status of an alien described insubsection (b)to that of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence if the alien—

(i)

applies for adjustment not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act; and

(ii)

is otherwise eligible to receive an immigrant visa and admissible to the United States for permanent residence, except that, in determining such admissibility, the grounds for inadmissibility specified in paragraphs (4),(5),(6)(A), and(7)(A) of section 212(a) of theImmigration and Nationality Act ( 8 U.S.C. 1182(a) )shall not apply.

(B)

Ineligible aliens

An alien shall not be eligible for adjustment of status under this section if theSecretary of Homeland Securitydetermines that the alien—

(i)

has been convicted of any aggravated felony (as defined in section 101(a)(43) of theImmigration and Nationality Act ( 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(43) );

(ii)

has been convicted of 2 or more crimes involving moral turpitude; or

(iii)

has ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise participated in the persecution of any person on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion.

(2)

Relationship of application to certain orders

(A)

In general

An alien present in the United States who has been subject to an order of exclusion, deportation, or removal, or has been ordered to depart voluntarily from the United States under any provision of theImmigration and Nationality Actmay, notwithstanding such order, apply for adjustment of status underparagraph (1)if otherwise qualified under such paragraph.

(B)

Separate motion not required

An alien described insubparagraph (A)may not be required, as a condition of submitting or granting such application, to file a separate motion to reopen, reconsider, or vacate the order described insubparagraph (A).

(C)

Effect of decision by secretary

If theSecretary of Homeland Securityadjusts the status of an alien pursuant to an application underparagraph (1), theSecretaryshall cancel the order described insubparagraph (A). If theSecretary of Homeland Securitymakes a final decision to deny such adjustment of status, the order shall be effective and enforceable to the same extent as if the application had not been made.

(b)

Aliens eligible for adjustment of status

(1)

In general

The benefits provided undersubsection (a)shall apply to any alien—

(A)

who is—

(i)

a national of Liberia; and

(ii)

has been continuously present in the United States between January 1, 2013, and the date on which the alien submits an application undersubsection (a); or

(B)

who is the spouse, child, or unmarried son or daughter of an alien described insubparagraph (A).

(2)

Determination of continuous physical presence

For purposes of establishing the period of continuous physical presence referred to inparagraph (1)(A)(ii), an alien shall not be considered to have failed to maintain continuous physical presence by reasons of an absence, or absences, from the United States for any period or periods amounting in the aggregate to not more than 180 days.

(c)

Stay of removal

(1)

In general

TheSecretary of Homeland Securityshall establish procedures, by regulation, through which an alien, who is subject to a final order of deportation, removal, or exclusion, may seek a stay of such order based upon the filing of an application undersubsection (a).

(2)

During certain proceedings

Notwithstanding any provision in the Immigration and Nationality Act(8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.) , theSecretary of Homeland Securitymay not order an alien to be removed from the United States if the alien is in exclusion, deportation, or removal proceedings under any provision of such Act and has applied for adjustment of status undersubsection (a)unless theSecretary of Homeland Securityhas made a final determination to deny the application.

(3)

Work authorization

(A)

In general

TheSecretary of Homeland Securitymay—

(i)

authorize an alien who has applied for adjustment of status undersubsection (a)to engage in employment in the United States while a determination regarding such application is pending; and

(ii)

provide the alien with anemployment authorizedendorsement or other appropriate document signifying authorization of employment.

(B)

Pending applications

If an application for adjustment of status undersubsection (a)is pending for a period exceeding 180 days and has not been denied, theSecretaryof Homeland Security shall authorize such employment.

(d)

Record of permanent residence

Upon the approval of an alien’s application for adjustment of status undersubsection (a), theSecretary of Homeland Securityshall establish a record of the alien’s admission for permanent residence as of the date of the alien’s arrival in the United States.

(e)

Availability of administrative review

TheSecretary of Homeland Securityshall provide to applicants for adjustment of status undersubsection (a)the same right to, and procedures for, administrative review as are provided to—

(1)

applicants for adjustment of status under section 245of theImmigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1255) ; and

(2)

aliens subject to removal proceedings under section 240 of such Act(8 U.S.C. 1229a).

(f)

Limitation on judicial review

A determination by theSecretary of Homeland Securityregarding the adjustment of status of any alien under this section is final and shall not be subject to review by any court.

(g)

No offset in number of visas available

If an alien is granted the status of having been lawfully admitted for permanent residence pursuant to this section, theSecretary of Stateshall not be required to reduce the number of immigrant visas authorized to be issued under any provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act(8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.).

(h)

Application ofImmigration and Nationality Actprovisions

(1)

Definitions

Except as otherwise specifically provided in this Act, the definitions contained in the Immigration and Nationality Act(8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.)shall apply in this section.

(2)

Savings provision

Nothing in this Act may be construed to repeal, amend, alter, modify, effect, or restrict the powers, duties, function, or authority of theSecretary of Homeland Securityin the administration and enforcement of theImmigration and Nationality Actor any other law relating to immigration, nationality, or naturalization.

(3)

Effect of eligibility for adjustment of status

Eligibility to be granted the status of having been lawfully admitted for permanent residence under this section shall not preclude an alien from seeking any status under any other provision of law for which the alien may otherwise be eligible.