During World War II there were thousands of Filipinos who bravely enlisted to fight for our United States. More than seventy years after service to our country, there are still an estimated 2,000 to 6,000 Filipino-American World War II veterans living in the United States. Effective June 8, 2016, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will honor these individuals by implementing the Filipino World War II Veterans Parole Program (FWVP Program). This program will allow certain Filipino-American family members awaiting immigrant-visa issuance to come to the United States and be with their loved ones. For many, it allows them to be here and provide support and care for these aging veterans or their surviving spouses. These family members will be granted parole on a case-by-case basis as they wait for their immigrant visa number to become available.
Historically the number of family-sponsored immigrant visas available by country of origin in any given year is governed by statute. The limitation of numbers results in long waiting periods before family members are able to join petitioning U.S. citizens or permanent residents in the United States and become permanent residents. For some Filipino-American families, this wait has exceeded 20 years. USCIS will review each case individually to determine whether authorizing parole is appropriate and as the individual arrives at a U.S. port of entry, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will also review each case to determine whether to parole the individual. For more information you can read further about the Filipino World War II Veterans Parole Program. Applications will not be accepted until June 8, 2016. USCIS strongly encourages eligible individuals interested in requesting parole under the FWVP Program do so within 5 years from that date and we recommend the guidance of immigration counsel on seeking these benefits.