DHS Announces Process For Certain Ukrainians Paroled Into The U.S.

On February 24th of last year, the Russian Federation began a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. This would turn out to be the largest waged war on a European state since World War II. An unprecedented humanitarian crisis followed, and by April of 2022, more than 2 million refugees had fled the country of Ukraine. Many sought protection in the neighboring countries of Poland, Czech Republic, or Romania. Then, beginning in late March and early April, many refugees began arriving at the Tijuana airport in Mexico, to seek humanitarian parole at the U.S.-Mexico border. Within the first three weeks, over 3,000 refugees were processed through.  Those who were granted entry, were given a one-year grant of Humanitarian Parole.

Upon receiving word of the massive influx of Ukrainians at the US-Mexico border, our own attorney, Kristofer Baughman, traveled to the border in early April 2022 in order to help Ukrainians in need.

Over the weekend of April 1, 2022 the Mexican government granted volunteers and Ukrainian refugees access to a sports complex and gymnasium, to serve as a refugee camp.  This was the camp on the morning of April 4. 

Ukrainians first arrived in Mexico at the Tijuana airport, where volunteers set up a welcome area and a make-shift “processing” station.  There they would begin the registration process of entering by way of Humanitarian Parole. The volunteers created a system that coordinated with Customs and Border Patrol.  Once their registration was completed, each refugee was given a number, to indicate their “place” in line.  The wait time during the week of April 4 was 2-3 days.  After successful registration and obtaining a number, each refugee was transported to the sports complex.  

Beginning on April 21, 2022, the Department of Homeland Security announced a new streamlined process, called Uniting for Ukraine (U4U), to provide Ukrainian citizens with the ability to come to the United States. The new process launched on April 25, 2022. Since then, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) instructed Ukrainians not travel to the United States, directly through a port of entry, without the necessary documentation. Any Ukrainian present at the border, starting April 25, 2022, without a valid visa or without pre-authorization to travel to the U.S. will be denied entry. Unlike those who arrived at a port of entry at the end of March, and beginning of April, those who sought Humanitarian parole through the U4U program, are given a two-year grant of parole.

In April of 2022, it was difficult to foresee how long the war would last, and in February of 2023, the war entered into its second year.  With increased hostilities and violence it became clear that the war would not be ending any time soon.  Many Ukrainians who were granted a one-year grant of Humanitarian Parole ran into an issue: will their one year grant be extended? what is the process for extending parole? Fortunately, on March 13, 2023, DHS concluded that due to the ongoing hostilities, there still exists urgent humanitarian reasons to extend parole to certain individuals who arrived prior to the implementation of the U4U program. DHS will determine, on a case-by-case basis, who is eligible for an extension of the parole period and employment authorization (specifically, those who arrived in the United States between February 24, 2022 and April 25, 2022).  DHS is currently in the process of considering these individuals for a one-year extension in order to align with the two-year parole period provided under Uniting for Ukraine, and it is estimated it will take DHS approximately four weeks, and is reviewing cases based on the date of parole.

Please visit the Department of Homeland Security website for more information, here: https://www.dhs.gov/ukraine?fbclid=IwAR3t17z94bQUKmCeTj4y5KX-LSTiEwjMFVpfcppbc895AOaRfMvkxdLWXD8

Слава Україні!

This information is intended for educational purposes only and should not be taken as legal advice. By reading this, you agree that this information is not a substitute for legal counsel and does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Please consult a qualified attorney to discuss your own situation and to obtain assistance with specific matters.

Three Ways to Divorce in Montana

A dissolution process for every situation.

  1. The Kitchen Table Divorce: Sometimes, both parties are completely in tune with one another regarding the dissolution of their marriage. Although they may still care about one another and respect one another, they agree that their marriage is over and, for the most part, on what their post marriage worlds look like. In this situation, it is often possible for the parties to sit down around the metaphorical “kitchen table” and hammer out an agreement regarding the parenting of their children and their property and debts. Occasionally, the use of a trained mediator can make this process more efficient. Almost always, the parties benefit from having a licensed attorney draft up the formal dissolution documents for them.
  2. Traditional Divorce: In a traditional dissolution proceeding, the parties use formal litigation to dissolve their marriage, make a plan to parent their children, and to divide the marital estate. This often begins with one party filing a Petition for Dissolution in district court and formally serving the other party with the same. Once served, the responding party has 21 days to file a formal Response. If there are immediate issues regarding parenting or support, the Court may hold a hearing on interim orders (i.e. a Band-Aid solution to get the parties through the dissolution process). If necessary, the parties may conduct formal discovery on the other party to investigate claims, defenses, etc. In almost all cases, the Court will then order the parties to mediation. In the vast majority of cases, a divorce can be completely resolved at mediation. In the event that mediation is unsuccessful, the Court will set the matter for a final hearing before the Court where the Court will ultimately decide how the parties will parent their children and how they will divide marital assets and liabilities. For more details: Montana Legal Services Association: Guide to Divorce
  3. Collaborative Divorce: Collaborative divorce is a process wherein the parties formally agree to avoid traditional litigation, and, instead, to settle their divorce in a non-adversarial and private manner. In addition, the parties agree to each provide the other with full disclosure throughout the process and to participate in a honest manner wherein neither party tries to take advantage of the other in any way. Each party is represented by counsel, and their are a financial neutral and a mental health neutral that also participate in the process. At the end of the day, the end result is typically a highly unique parenting plan and property settlement agreement that meet the specific needs of the specific family participating in the collaborative process. In addition, it is our experience that the parties involved in the collaborative process are more likely to be able to preserve a positive co-parenting relationship and reduce the amount of perpetual animosity they have towards their ex-spouse. For more details: International Academy of Collaborative Professionals and Montana Collaborative Professionals