Good news for immigrants in 2020: Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act

This is a time sensitive immigration option: if you are Liberian, or have family members who are Liberian, you should call us today. It’s a good time to get paperwork ready to be filed now.

In the fiscal year of 2020 there is a development called the Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act.

The Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act (LRIFA) is a special law that allows Liberian nationals who have lived in the United States since November 20, 2014 to apply for lawful permanent resident status (green card).

It allows Liberians’ spouses, children under 21, and even unmarried children over 21 who are in the US to apply for a green card.

We’ve had programs like LRIFA before, in recent decades, for people from Nicaragua, Haiti and Cuba.

The Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act is time sensitive and a huge game changer for nationals of Liberia.

What are the qualifications for the Liberian act?

  • Must have paperwork submitted by the deadline: December 20, 2020
  • Must prove you are a national of Liberia
  • Must have been physically present in the United States starting or before November 20, 2014
  • Must be otherwise eligible to get a green card

What would make me ineligible to qualify for the LRIFA?

Being convicted of crimes can make it more difficult to get a green card.

  • If you have been convicted of any aggravated felony
  • If you have been convicted of two or more crimes involving moral turpitude (see below), but not for solely political crimes.
  • If you ordered, or otherwise participated in the persecution of any person on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion

What is a crime of moral turpitude?

Moral turpitude is generally defined as “an act or behavior that gravely violates the sentiment or accepted standard of the community.”

Call an immigration lawyer if you think you qualify!  The deadline is short.

Immigration is working on cases during the pandemic.

Most people have more than one option to get a green card into the US. There are waivers for people who might be otherwise ineligible– for instance if they have a violation  of immigration law, and or a crime on their record.



Written by: Harlan York

Immigration Attorney Harlan York is Former Chair, Immigration Section, NJ State Bar Association and Former Co-Chair, NY State Bar Association CFLS Immigration Committee. Mr. York appeared on National Television on CBS This Morning with Charlie Rose and Primer Impacto on Univision, as well as Telemundo, NBC, and PBS. He was honored as First Ever Immigration Lawyer of The Year in NJ by Best Lawyers.

Do you have a question about Immigration in General?

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