• Phone Number: 312-362-9844
  • 53 West Jackson Blvd., Suite 1340, Chicago, Illinois 60604
Navigating complex inadmissibility waiver applications.

Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility

A foreign national seeking to enter the United States or living in the United States may be deemed inadmissible by the Consulate, the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) or the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). If the foreign national is deemed inadmissible, he or she cannot enter the United States or adjust their status without a waiver of the inadmissibility or a determination that the inadmissibility charge was made in error.

Foreign nationals may be inadmissible to the United States for any one of the grounds for excludability listed below.

Health Related Grounds

  • Communicable diseases of public health significance. This currently includes Class A Tuberculosis, Chancroid, Gonorrhea, Granuloma inguinale, Lymphogranuloma venereum, Syphilis, Leprosy or any other communicable disease as determined by the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services.
  • Refusal of required vaccinations
  • Physical or Mental Disorders and Associated Harmful Behaviors

Criminal and Related Violations

  • Crimes involving moral turpitude (other than a purely political offense)
  • A controlled substance violation according to the laws and regulations of any country (this includes a single offense of simple possession for a small amount of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) residue or for “drug paraphernalia” consisting of rolling papers or a pipe containing traces of THC marijuana)
  • Two or more summary convictions not including Driving Under the Influence -DUI’s, Dangerous Driving or General Assault, or 1 Indictable conviction.
  • Prostitution and commercialized vice
  • A serious criminal activity for which immunity from prosecution has been received

Security and Related Violations

  • spies, saboteurs or terrorists
  • persons whose entry would endanger U.S. foreign policy
  • voluntary members of Communist or other totalitarian parties
  • Nazis

Illegal Entrants and Immigration Violators

  • Persons who enter the U.S. without being admitted or paroled at a port of entry (EWI – Entry Without Inspection) or who overstay a valid visa begin to accrue unlawful presence after the illegal entry, or the period of authorized stay expires.
  • Persons who knowingly or willfully made misrepresentations or committed fraud in order to obtain an immigration benefit.
  • Persons previously deported or given expedited removal.
  • Persons unlawfully present in the United States for an aggregate period of one (1) year who have exited the United States and re-entered without inspection (EWI) are not eligible to waive their unlawful presence.

Public Charge Grounds

An alien who, in the opinion of a consular officer at the time of the application for a visa, or the Attorney General at the time of the application for admission or adjustment of status, is likely to become a public charge at any time.

Labor Certification and Qualifications for Physicians and Health Care Workers

An alien seeking entry for the purpose of seeking skilled or unskilled labor is excludable in the absence of an approved labor certification. This ground of exclusion applies to the second and third employment-based preference categories.

Unqualified Physicians: Certain foreign physicians are excludable as immigrants unless they have successfully completed the necessary qualifying examinations.

Uncertified Foreign Health Care Workers Other Than Physicians: An alien who seeks to enter the United States as a health-care worker, other than a physician, is excludable unless the alien presents a certificate from the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (“CGFNS”), or certificate from an equivalent independent credentialing organization approved by the Attorney General in consultation with the Secretary of Health and Human Services verifying that:

  1. the alien’s education, training, license and experience –
    • meet all applicable statutory and regulatory requirements for entry into the United States under the classification specified in the application;
    • are comparable with that required for an American health care worker of the same type; and
    • are authentic and, in the case of a license, unencumbered.
  2. the alien has the level of competence in oral and written English considered by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in conjunction with the Secretary of Education, to be appropriate for health care work of the kind in which the alien will be engaged; and
  3. if a majority of States licensing the profession in which the alien intends to work recognizes a test predicting the success on the profession’s licensing or certifying examination, the alien has passed such a test or examination.

Documentation Requirements

  1. Immigrants: Any immigrant who, at the time of application for admission:
    • is not in possession of a valid unexpired immigrant visa, reentry permit, border crossing identification card, or other valid entry document, and a valid unexpired passport, or other suitable travel document, or document of identity and nationality, or
    • whose visa has been issued without compliance, is excludable.
  2. Nonimmigrants: Any nonimmigrant who:
    • is not in possession of a passport valid for at least six months from the date of expiration of the initial period of the alien’s admission or contemplated initial period of stay authorizing the alien to return to the country from which the alien came or to proceed to some other country during such period; or
    • is not in possession of a valid nonimmigrant visa or border crossing identification card at the time of application for admission is excludable.


  • Practicing Polygamists – any immigrant who is coming to the United States to practice polygamy.
  • Guardians accompanying helpless aliens – where an alien who has been ordered excluded is certified to be helpless from sickness or mental or physical disability or infancy, any accompanying alien whose protection or guardianship is required by the excluded alien is also excludable.
  • International child abductors and relatives supporting abductors – any alien who detains, retains or withholds custody of a child outside the United States, after entry of an United States court order granting custody of the child to another, is excludable until the child is surrendered to the person granted custody by that order. However, this ground of exclusion does not apply, so long as the child is located in a foreign state that is a party to The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.
  • Aliens Who Have Unlawfully Voted – any alien who has unlawfully voted in violation of any Federal, State or local constitutional provision, statute, ordinance, or regulation is excludable.
  • Former Citizens who Renounced Citizenship to Avoid United States Taxation -any alien who is a former citizen of the United States who officially renounces United States citizenship for the purpose of avoiding United States taxation is excludable. This ground of exclusion is applicable to individuals who renounce United States citizenship on or after September 30, 1996.

Falsely Claiming U.S. Citizenship

NO WAIVER is available to an alien who has falsely claimed that they are a U.S. citizen to obtain a benefit under the Immigration and Nationality Act, Federal or State law. As a result, these individuals are permanently inadmissible and cannot file for a Waiver of Inadmissibility.

Ineligible for Citizenship

Draft Evaders: Any person who has departed from or remained outside the United States to avoid or evade training or service in the armed forces in time of war or period declared by the president to be a national emergency is excludable, except that this subparagraph shall not apply to an alien who at the time of such departure was a nonimmigrant and who is seeking to reenter the United States as a nonimmigrant.

Grounds of Inadmissibility by Section of Law INA 212

  • INA 212(a)(1)(A)(i) Communicable Disease
  • INA 212(a)(1)(A)(ii) Lacking Required Vaccinations
  • INA 212(a)(1)(A)(iii) Physical or Mental Disorder
  • INA 212(a)(1)(A)(iv) Drug Abuser/ Drug Addict
  • INA 212(a)(2)(A)(i)(I) Crime Involving Moral Turpitude (CIMT)
  • INA 212(a)(2)(A)(i)(II) Controlled Substance Violations (Drug Crimes)
  • INA 212(a)(2)(B) Multiple Criminal Convictions
  • INA 212(a)(2)(C)(i) & 212(a)(2)(C)(ii) Controlled Substance (Drug) Traffickers and Their Families
  • INA 212(a)(2)(D)(i), 212(a)(2)(D)(ii) & 212(a)(2)(D)(iii) Prostitution and Commercialized Vice
  • INA 212(a)(2)(E) Asserted Immunity from Prosecution
  • INA 212(a)(3)(A)(i), 212(a)(3)(A)(ii) & 212(a)(3)(A)(iii) Espionage, Unlawful Activity Related to Security & Attempts to Overthrow the US Government
  • INA 212(a)(3)(B) Terrorist Activities
  • INA 212(a)(3)(C) Foreign Policy
  • INA 212(a)(3)(D) Membership in Totalitarian Party
  • INA 212(a)(3)(E)(i) & 212(a)(3)(E)(ii) Nazi Party & Genocide
  • INA 212(a)(4) Public Charge
  • INA 212(5)(A) Labor Certification
  • INA 212(5)(B) Unqualified Physician
  • INA 212(5)(C) Uncertified Health Care Workers
  • INA 212(a)(6)(A) Aliens Present without Admission or Parole (EWI)
  • INA 212(a)(6)(B) Failure to Attend Removal Proceedings
  • INA 212(a)(6)(C)(i) Misrepresentation
  • INA 212(a)(6)(C)(ii) False Claim to US Citizenship
  • INA 212(a)(6)(D) Stowaways
  • INA 212(a)(6)(E) Smugglers
  • INA 212(a)(6)(F) Civil Penalty under INA 274C
  • INA 212(a)(6)(G) Student Visa Abusers
  • INA 212(a)(7)(A) Documentation Requirement for Immigrants
  • INA 212(a)(7)(A)(B) Documentation Requirement for Nonimmigrants
  • INA 212(a)(8)(A) Immigrant Ineligible for Citizenship INA 314 or INA 315
  • INA 212(a)(8)(B) Draft Evaders
  • INA 212(a)(9)(A)(i) & 212(a)(9)(A)(ii) Ordered Removed Upon Arrival
  • INA 212(a)(9)(B) Unlawful Presence
  • INA 212(a)(9)(C) Unlawful Presence after Prior Immigration Violation
  • INA 212(a)(10)(A) Immigrant Polygamists
  • INA 212(a)(10)(B) Guardian Accompanying Inadmissible Helpless Foreign National
  • INA 212(a)(10)(C) International Child Abduction
  • INA 212(a)(10)(D) Unlawful Voter
  • INA 212(a)(10)(E) Former Citizen Who Renounced Citizenship to Avoid Taxes
  • INA 212(e) Former Exchange Visitors
  • INA 212(f) Individual Who is Detrimental to US Interests

Many foreign nationals who are faced with an inadmissibility determination believe that they will never be able to obtain a waiver or enter the United States again. There is good news. The foreign national can apply and be eligible for waiver of the ground(s) of inadmissibility. Usually, there are two types of waivers that apply to each ground of inadmissibility: one for immigrants – those trying to obtain an immigrant visa or green card and one for nonimmigrants – those trying to obtain or enter with a temporary visa such as a B-2 tourist visa, F1 student visa, H-1B work visa or any other visa.

An Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility is an application for legal entry to the United States made by a foreign national who is otherwise inadmissible on one or more grounds. The application is submitted to the consular office, USCIS or immigration court considering the foreign national’s immigrant visa or adjustment of status application.

Do you fall under any of the several circumstances under which a foreign national and immigration violators may apply for a Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility? Contact the LAW OFFICE of EBERE N. EKECHUKWU & ASSOCIATES, P.C. today at 312-362-9844, and we will explain the law, rules, procedures, your eligibility to apply for waiver of inadmissibility and assist you in putting together the necessary paperwork and filing it either with the Consulate overseas, USCIS, or the Immigration Court.