Misrepresentation or Fraud Waivers – Timeline
One of the most frequently asked questions about misrepresentation waivers is: “How long will it take?” The answer to this question will depend on how long it takes you to prepare your misrepresentation waiver application package and how long it takes USCIS to reach a final decision on your waiver.
Although it can be tempting to try to speed up the process by rushing to put together your misrepresentation waiver package, it is almost always a mistake to rush the process. Rushing the process risks not submitting the best waiver package possible, which in turn can make it more difficult to win your case. It is much better to take a little extra time at the beginning of the process to submit a good package than to have to spend considerable extra time and money resubmitting your misrepresentation waiver application or filing an appeal. The only exception is if you have a filing deadline that you need to meet.
How much time should you spend preparing your application? Most people will need several weeks and possibly several months to prepare all of the statements and to collect all of the supporting documents needed to complete their application.
After you finalize and submit your application, you’ll need to wait for USCIS to make a final decision on your misrepresentation waiver. I have received decisions in less than two months, so it is possible to receive a relatively quick decision. However, you should not expect to receive a decision this quickly. Most decisions will take at least three months, and a good estimate would be between three to six months to receive a decision from USCIS. Some cases could take even longer if there are unusual issues that need to be addressed.
How can I get a faster decision on my misrepresentation waiver?
The best way to get a decision in the fastest time possible is to submit a well-organized misrepresentation waiver package that focuses on the key hardship factors in your case. A well-organized waiver package will:
- Follow all of the USCIS misrepresentation waiver application instructions
- Include hardship letters and supporting statements written in easy to read English using proper English grammar and spelling
- Include a legal memo or letter that highlights the key hardship factors in your case and makes it clear to the reviewer that all of the misrepresentation waiver requirements are met
- Begin with your strongest arguments
- Avoid overwhelming the reviewer with too many documents but will include the correct supporting documents to clearly demonstrate each hardship factor
- Include a table of contents that makes it easy for the reviewer to understand the entire waiver case and to find supporting documents quickly and easily
If you believe that your situation is very time-sensitive and would like to request that your I-601 misrepresentation waiver application be expedited, it is possible to submit such a request. But, I strongly recommend that you discuss your situation with an immigration lawyer. Don’t forget that all applicants who are applying for misrepresentation waiver have compelling reasons to receive a decision as quickly as possible. If you have a compelling and time-sensitive reason for requesting that your case be processed faster than the normal processing times, you can request that your case be expedited.
If you aren’t sure about the best way to present your misrepresentation waiver case so that you can get the fastest possible decision, you should consider discussing your case with an immigration lawyer.