A waiver of grounds of inadmissibility allows U.S. entry to anyone who would otherwise not be allowed to enter. Being inadmissible prevents you from entering the U.S. at all, even if you have a sponsor. With form I-601, you can apply for a waiver to USCIS.

To work towards the best application, meet with an immigration attorney. You will need to make a good case that proves you deserve the waiver. An immigration attorney can help you work towards getting the results you want.


  • Form I-601 (Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility)
  • Form I-912 (if you cannot afford fees)


  • Form I-601 – $930


When you know that you are inadmissible, you can submit an I-601. You can file the I-601 along with supporting evidence to become a permanent resident.If you would like to stay in the United States while you apply for the waiver, you could file provisionally. In this case, you could file for a provisional waiver with USCIS. This is best for those who are unlawful in their presence in the U.S. but do not want to leave to get processed. If you leave the country, you will likely be away for several months while your case is processing, and you run the risk that you will not be let back in if your waiver is denied.

Along with the proper paperwork, you must qualify under one of the following:

Why would I be inadmissible?

The U.S. may find that you are inadmissible due to reasons found in Section 212 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (I.N.A.). Some of these reasons include:

  • Anyone who could have a contagious disease, a mental or physical disorder, or lacks the needed immunizations.
  • Anyone who has abused drugs will not be allowed.
  • Crimes that are in violation of moral turpitude. Moral turpitude translates as the moral standards of the U.S. These acts include, but are not limited to:
    • Drug trafficking
    • Slave trafficking
    • Prostitution
    • Violations of religious freedom
    • Money laundering

A “petty offense” exceptions exists for crimes of moral turpitude if there was one offense, the possible term of imprisonment did not exceed 1 year, and the actual prison sentence did not exceed 6 months. The exception also applies to someone convicted of personal possession of marijuana under 30 grams. There may be other exceptions, such as for VAWA, U visa and T visa applicants. Contact an immigration attorney for more details and an assessment of your particular case.

Some people may not be eligible for a waiver, such as:

  • Any applicants under the Visa Waiver Program or the Guam and Northern Mariana Islands Visa Waiver
  • Anyone who has been denied citizenship or has evaded the U.S. draft in the past and would like to return will not be allowed to enter
  • Polygamists
  • Guardians accompanying anyone who qualifies as inadmissible for one of the above criteria
  • Anyone who has abducted a child and is looking to the U.S. as a haven
  • Any voters who have participated in unlawful voting
  • Former U.S. citizens who renounced their citizenship to avoid paying taxes

Have questions?

The San Antonio immigration attorneys at Salmón-Haas can help. They have helped many immigrants with their waivers. Together, they can work with you to help get the best results possible. Contact Salmón-Haas for a free consultation.

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