S 1109

112th CONGRESS
1st Session

S. 1109

To authorize the adjustment of status for immediate family members of individuals who served honorably in the Armed Forces of the United States during the Afghanistan and Iraq conflicts, and for other purposes.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

May 26, 2011

Mr. MENENDEZ (for himself, Mr. REID, Mr. DURBIN, Mr. SCHUMER, Mr. LEAHY, Mr. AKAKA, Mr. BENNET, Mrs. GILLIBRAND, and Mr. INOUYE) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary


A BILL

To authorize the adjustment of status for immediate family members of individuals who served honorably in the Armed Forces of the United States during the Afghanistan and Iraq conflicts, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the `Military Families Act'.

SEC. 2. PERMANENT RESIDENT STATUS FOR FAMILY MEMBERS OF MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES.

    (a) In General- Section 245 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1255) is amended by adding at the end the following:

    `(n) Adjustment of Status for Immediate Family Members of Members of the Armed Forces-

      `(1) IN GENERAL- The Secretary of Homeland Security shall adjust the status of an alien described in paragraph (2) to that of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence if the alien--

        `(A) applies for such adjustment;

        `(B) is admissible to the United States as an immigrant, except as provided in paragraph (4); and

        `(C) is physically present in the United States.

      `(2) ALIENS ELIGIBLE FOR ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS- An alien described in this paragraph is an alien--

        `(A) who is a parent, spouse, child, son, daughter, or the legal guardian of a child of--

          `(i) a living Armed Forces member; or

          `(ii) a deceased Armed Forces member if--

            `(I) the Armed Forces member died as a result of injury or disease incurred in, or aggravated by, the Armed Forces member's service; and

            `(II) the alien applies for such adjustment--

`(aa) if the death of the Armed Forces member occurred prior to the date of the enactment of the Military Families Act, not later than 2 years after such date of enactment; or

`(bb) if the death of the Armed Forces member occurred after the date of the enactment of the Military Families Act, not later than 2 years after the death of the Armed Forces member; or

        `(B) who is the spouse, child, son, or daughter of an alien described in subparagraph (A).

      `(3) ARMED FORCES MEMBER DEFINED- In this subsection, the term `Armed Forces member' means an individual who--

        `(A) is, or was at the time of the individual's death described in paragraph (2)(B)(ii)(I), a national of the United States or lawfully admitted for permanent residence;

        `(B) on or after October 7, 2001, served as a member of--

          `(i) the Armed Forces on active duty;

          `(ii) the National Guard; or

          `(iii) the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve; and

        `(C) if separated from the service described in subparagraph (B), was separated under honorable conditions.

      `(4) INAPPLICABILITY OF CERTAIN GROUNDS OF INADMISSIBILITY-

        `(A) IN GENERAL- The provisions of paragraphs (4), (5), (6)(A), (7)(A), and (9)(B) of section 212(a) shall not apply to an adjustment of status made pursuant to this subsection.

        `(B) WAIVER- The Secretary of Homeland Security or the Attorney General, as appropriate, may waive any other provision of section 212(a) (other than paragraph (2)(C) and subparagraphs (A), (B), (C), (E), and (F) of paragraph (3)) with respect to an adjustment of status made pursuant to this subsection--

          `(i) for humanitarian purposes;

          `(ii) to assure family unity; or

          `(iii) if such waiver is otherwise in the public interest.

      `(5) FEE AUTHORITY- The Secretary of Homeland Security or the Secretary of State, as appropriate, may establish a fee pursuant to section 9701 of title 31, United States Code, for the processing of an application for an adjustment of status made pursuant to this subsection.

      `(6) JURISDICTION-

        `(A) SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY- Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the Secretary of Homeland Security shall have exclusive jurisdiction to determine eligibility for an adjustment of status made pursuant to this subsection.

        `(B) ATTORNEY GENERAL- Notwithstanding paragraph (1) or subparagraph (A), in cases in which an alien has been placed into deportation, exclusion, or removal proceedings, either prior to or after filing an application for an adjustment of status pursuant to this subsection, the Attorney General shall have exclusive jurisdiction and shall assume all the powers and duties of the Secretary of Homeland Security until proceedings are terminated, or if a final order of deportation, exclusion, or removal is entered.'.

    (b) Exemption From Direct Numerical Limitations- Section 201(b)(1) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1151(b)(1)) is amended by adding at the end the following:

      `(F) Aliens provided permanent residence status under section 245(n).'.

SEC. 3. FILIPINO VETERANS FAMILY REUNIFICATION.

    (a) Short Title- This section may be cited as the `Filipino Veterans Family Reunification Act'.

    (b) Exception From Direct Numerical Limitations- Section 201(b)(1) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1151(b)(1)), as amended by section 2(b), is further amended by adding at the end the following:

      `(G) Aliens who--

        `(i) are eligible for a visa under paragraph (1) or (3) of section 203(a); and

        `(ii) have a parent (regardless of whether the parent is living or dead) who was naturalized pursuant to--

          `(I) section 405 of the Immigration Act of 1990 (Public Law 101-649; 8 U.S.C. 1440 note); or

          `(II) title III of the Act of October 14, 1940 (54 Stat. 1137, chapter 876), as added by section 1001 of the Second War Powers Act, 1942 (56 Stat. 182, chapter 199).'.

END