On Wednesday, August 15, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services began officially accepting applications for its deferred action program focusing on the children of illegal immigrants.
The program allows people who illegally immigrated as children to defer deportation for two years and gain a work permit.
While there has been a great deal of news coverage about the program, and how it may eventually allow your children to gain legal residency in the U.S. so they can send money home, you might still have some questions.
Here's a short summary of some frequent questions from USCIS.
Who is eligible?
In order to qualify for the program, you must have been be under the age of 31 as of June 15, when the program was announced, and have come to the U.S. before the age of 16.
In addition, you need to have stayed in the U.S. continuously since June 15, 2007, and have been physically in the country on June 15. That continuous residency can include short absences, as long as they were innocent and not because of deportation or other legal issues.
You must also be in school, have graduated from high school or achieved a GED, or served honorably in the armed forces or U.S. Coast Guard. You must also have not been convicted of a felony or serious misdemeanors and not pose a threat to national security.
The program also only applies to individuals who qualify, so your immediate relatives are not eligible just because you are.
Is it free?
No, unfortunately the program is not free. The filing of the application comes with a $465 fee, which covers the paperwork processing and issuance of a work permit. There are also no fee waivers for the work permits, and limited fee exemptions in general.
How long will it take?
There's no good answer to this question. The government hasn't said how long it's likely to take for your application to be processed and read.
The program was only announced two months ago, so USCIS hasn't had that much time to plan. If the agency gets your application and agrees that it is complete, it will have you come in for an appointment. If you want, you can sign up to get an email or text notification that your form has been accepted.
Does this make me a U.S. citizen?
No, the deferred action does not make you a U.S. citizen, and it can't make you a legal immigrant.
The idea of the program is to delay deportation for two years and make it possible for you to get a legal work permit. That can allow you to apply for official training certificates, industry licenses and other programs to further your career.
After that two-year period is up, you will be able to apply again if the program is still active.
Will this information be shared with enforcement personnel?
No. USCIS says that by law, any information you send in for the program is generally protected from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials for removal purposes.
The only reason the data would be shared with those agencies would be for the investigation of a serious crime, national security or to prevent fraud. That information also extends to any of your family members and/or guardians.
How does someone prove they are in school or graduated?
Since part of the eligibility for the program revolves around school status, there are a number of ways to show that.
For those currently in school – You need to show evidence that you are enrolled in a public or private school, education or other career program.
For those who graduated high school or got a GED – Your high school diploma or GED is enough documentation to show you have completed school.
The key here is to have clear documentation. USCIS says it won't accept any "circumstantial evidence" about your schooling, so get the paperwork to back it up.
La joven llegó a las Olimpiadas de Londres 2012 con una molestia en la rodilla, sin embargo logró quedar entre las 25 mejores mundiales y quedar primera entre las latinoamericanas.
Si bien, a esta peruana de tomo y lomo no le faltaban las ganas para quedar entre las 15 mejores mundiales en la competencia de atletismo, una pequeña lesión le jugo una mala pasada. La muchacha comenzó a tener complicaciones en la rodilla quince días antes del torneo, que hasta la fecha, se escribe como el más importante de su vida.
El dolor en la rodilla la obligó a descansar, lo cual le impidió entrenar como debía hacerlo para superar la marca de 2 horas 30 minutos, que había alcanzado en la Maratón Internacional de Seúl. Durante esa competencia, la joven logró marcar un record nacional y se dispuso a entrenar para llegar a Londres con un tiempo de dos horas 26 minutos. De acuerdo a la propia joven, sus arduos entrenamientos ya habían dado sus frutos, puesto que ya había alcanzado la marca que la colocaría entre las 15 mejores mundiales.
Sin embargo, la falta de entrenamiento se hizo sentir para la joven de 25 años. Melchor cuenta que la molestia en la rodilla se intensificó este pasado 5 de Agosto e incluso llegó a considerar la opción de abandonar la carrera. A pesar del dolor en ese momento pensó en sus compatriotas, en el Perú y en el equipo y el esfuerzo que había realizado.
“En la pista sientes gritos mas no sientes peruanos a tu costado. En la maratón, sin embargo, sí los podía identificar por sus gritos de aliento que fueron una gran motivación para seguir adelante, por las banderas ondeando”, señaló Melchor
Con Xoom.com, tú también eres parte del equipo olímpico peruano.
Fue así, que la joven logró completar el recorrido de los 42 kilómetros en 2 horas 28 segundos y 54 centésimas. Así con tan sólo dos competencias internacionales a su haber, Melchor le dio la primera gran alegría a Perú y entrar al selecto grupo de las top 25 a nivel mundial.
Melchor conversó con el portal online Terra y señaló que, “establecí un nuevo récord sudamericano. El récord le pertenecía a la brasileña Adriana Da Silva. Lo de 1994 es de una atleta (Carmem Oliveira) que lo hizo en la maratón de Boston, que no se aceptan sus marcas por tener ruta desnivelada".
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With the strongest sovereign bond rating in all of South America, Chile is a shining example of how a country with a good economy can thrive. A significant percentage of its robust financial system is thanks to the goods and services it exports, and because Chile signed a free trade agreement with the United States several years ago, both countries have continued to establish themselves on the world stage.
But something else that’s helped Chile succeed economically is remittances, as many people who originate from there send money online to their loved ones at home after taking a job in a country overseas.
Government statistics from the Central Intelligence Agency indicate that about 13 percent of Chilean expatriates around the globe live in the U.S. The opportunities they get here enable them to make an international wire transfer to family members who may not have a job, or who have one but need a little extra to supplement their income.
As a Xoom customer, there are a variety of ways in which to have your online money transfer delivered to your recipient, but one of the quickest ways is through cash pickup. With 172 pickup locations in a country that’s roughly twice the size of Montana, Chileans have a variety of locations they can turn to, as they’re bound to live near at least one, whether it be AFEX, or Abcdin. Abcdin is open seven days a week, Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. On Sunday, hours are from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Meanwhile, AFEX is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday.
Money that’s sent with Xoom is normally available within 15 minutes, so there’s little to no wait time. And because these locations are open on the weekends, family members can obtain their money any day of the week, whenever it’s most convenient for them.
Also, with different forms of currency accepted by retailers and businesses, the money that’s sent can be picked up as either U.S. dollars or Chilean Pesos, depending on what the sender decides. The convenience of being able to pay cash can be a significant benefit for family members who need to purchase necessities, pay rent or settle other costs they may be facing.
With hours to go before the start of the 30th Olympiad, more than 10,000 athletes from 205 countries throughout the world are gearing up for what may be the most significant moment of their careers – the chance to bring home a gold medal.
Among the countries participating in the London Summer Olympic Games is the Peruvian Olympic Team. If you happen to be from Peru and this is the team you're pulling for, you're in luck – as Xoom is a proud sponsor of the athletes.
Throughout the month of July, whenever Xoom users send money to Peru, a dollar of it goes toward supporting Peruvian Olympic sports. Not only does it fund the team's monetary needs so it can compete in this year's and Olympic Games in the coming years, but it also helps support the athletes' families. Additionally, it goes toward funding sports scholarships, so athletes from Peru can go to college and perhaps pursue a career in their athletic field.
But hurry, this exciting opportunity to donate ends on July 31.
In the meantime, over the next two weeks, keep an eye out for the Peruvian Olympic Team, which is made up of 16 athletes from various athletic fields like track and field, badminton, judo, rowing, sailing, shooting, swimming and taekwondo. High-profile athletes include marathon runners Ines Melchor and Gladys Tejeda, swimmer Mauricio Fiol, rower Victor Aspillaga and taekwondo fighter Peter Lopez.
The Peruvian Olympic Team is looking to bring home its first gold medal since 1948, which happens to be the last time London hosted the Games. The last time it took home a silver medal – two of them, in fact – was in Barcelona in 1992 during the shooting competition.
As one of the world’s leading exporters of sugar and coffee, the Dominican Republic relies on its natural resources to keep its economy in good shape. But it also depends on people who send money to the island nation, such as immigrants who work in the U.S. and then make an online money transfer. One of the easiest and safest ways in which to do this is by a bank deposit, as the money gets to its intended destination quickly and securely.
Bank deposits to the Dominican Republic using Xoom have proven to be a popular because it can be safer for the recipients, as they can avoid having to pick up a large amount of cash in person, making them a target for thieves.
When sending a bank deposit to the Dominican Republic, keep in mind that the money will be deposited based on when the transfer was sent. During the week, deposits are usually completed between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., the exception being Sunday, as banks are often closed. The time of day in which the transaction is made determines how early in the day it will be completed. For instance, if it’s sent before 9 a.m., the deposit will be made by around 10 a.m. If it’s before 2 p.m., plan for a 3 p.m. arrival. Any time after that and the transaction should be completed by the next business day.
You can’t go wrong with a bank transaction, as it provides senders and recipients with a certain sense of assurance.
Thanks to a better understanding of what it takes to be healthy, many people are living longer much longer than people used to. They’re also more mobile, as individuals in their 70s and 80s are often able to get around like they did when they were in their 20s and 30s.
Despite this, there may come a period in which people have trouble moving around. This may be especially common for the elderly, as a considerable percentage of people who live in the Dominican Republic are over the age of 65.
They don’t have to worry about finances, though, as thanks to Xoom’s home delivery service, people who work overseas can send money to family and have it brought to their front door.
Xoom provides the home delivery service to the Dominican Republic to provide an extra layer of convenience. Instead of picking the cash up or having to go through their bank to obtain funds, all a recipient has to do is open their front door, as the cash will be delivered directly to them.
How quickly they receive it depends on when the online money transfer was made. If it was sent before 4 p.m. Local Dominican time, the money will arrive in three hours or less. If the money was sent after 4 p.m., the funds will be delivered the next morning, generally before 9 a.m.
Whether it’s for convenience or out of necessity, home delivery in the Dominican Republic is an ideal way to get money to its intended destination.
Mexico has been in the news a lot lately and not just because of the country’s recent presidential election. It’s also because Mexicans who now live in countries like the U.S. have been looking to send money online more often.
While there are a variety of ways in which to send money online, one of the most common forms is by sending a bank deposit to Mexico, as this better guarantees the money that’s needed will be quickly received. And, provided it’s done with Xoom, customers are sure to be pleased with the process.
Money transfers to a bank account are ideal for pretty much everyone because they provide a great deal of convenience and peace of mind. With a few keystrokes and button clicks, the money you send is transferred electronically, which helps prevent human error.
It’s also ideal because it’s fast. For example, one of the most popular banks many of Xoom’s Mexican customers have accounts with is Bancomer. Deposits here normally take about 15 minutes to complete from start to finish. Banamex or Banorte usually take about one hour, only because there’s a little bit more involved. EVen with other banks the transfers only take 24 hours.
No matter which you choose, though, you’re sure to be pleased by the results, as customers come back to Xoom again and again because of its reliability and quality customer service.
Make your next bank deposit with Xoom so you can experience all that it has to offer.
While many countries have been able to recover relatively well since the global recession, the financial crisis is deepening in certain parts of the world. Despite this, remittances have proven to be largely immune to these fiscal issues, international officials recently stated.
According to the World Bank, money transfer transactions grew by more than 12 percent last year to $372 billion, higher than the initial estimate which was released earlier this year. In addition, given the robust flow of remittances through the first half of 2012, transfers could hit $467 billion two years from now.
Despite the vitality of remittances, the report said that several factors still affect the market.
"Persistent unemployment in Europe … is affecting employment prospects of existing migrants and hardening political attitudes toward new immigration," the report stated. "There are risks that if the European crisis deepens, immigration controls in these countries could become even tighter. Volatile exchange rates and uncertainty about the direction of oil prices also present further risks."
These most recent comments were added to an annual report which was released earlier this year by the World Bank.
Should the European crisis become more of an issue, the impact on remittances may be lessened through governmental actions that can make immigration easier. The World Bank released a book on migration and remittances in June, advocating for the removal of burdensome restrictions on mobility. By doing so, this could make any further deepening of the world's financial crisis more tolerable, as more immigrants would be able to work in other countries like the U.S. so that they can send money home to their families.
With the U.S. unemployment rate stuck at 8.2 percent, some immigrants who are already in the country or who are considering moving here may be worried that they will have difficulty finding a job. But according to the Conference Board, many businesses are hiring.
Recently, the Conference Board reported that online advertised work vacancies rose by 232,000 in June to more than 4.9 million jobs.
June Shelp, vice president at the Conference Board, noted that online labor demand posted an increase in 44 of the 50 states last month, with some of the largest gains coming in the West, specifically Nevada, Arizona and Colorado. Many people who have emigrated from Mexico take up residence in these states. Florida has a large Hispanic population as well. There, online labor demand jumped by 15,000, as there was a sizable increase in online ads for various jobs such as for nurses, truck drivers and elementary school teachers.
Metropolitan localities also fared well in June, as 20 of the country's largest metro areas witnessed labor demand creep northward. In just about half of these localities, many people have been successful in finding work, as the Conference Board says there were approximately two unemployed workers for every online advertised vacancy.
As an Indian immigrant whose family still resides there, your ability to send money to India is likely a major aspect of your life, as it may be their primary form of income to use for daily expenses. That said, you were probably frustrated to hear the reports indicating that Indian officials were planning on taxing non-resident Indians for the remittances they sent home.
But according to multiple news reports, any suggestion that a tax will be imposed is inaccurate.
In recent days, rumors had been swirling that Indians who were working overseas would soon be issued a tax levy of nearly 12.40 percent when they transfer money abroad. The speculation took on a life of its own when it was reported that Indian officials were mulling whether or not they wanted to implement the tax soon or impose them at a later date.
These speculations came to a grinding halt, however, when India's prime minister, Manmohan Singh, was informed of them.
"Prime Minister [Singh] has dismissed reports that the government is planning to charge 12.36 per cent on all foreign remittances to India," said Oommen Chandy, Kerela chief minister, recently told reporters. "He has assured status quo on the service tax issue."
Reports indicate that officials within the Indian government had discussed the possibility of installing a tax on foreign remittances as a means of boosting India's economy. Experts, however, were quick to cite that the tax would likely do more harm than good and could wind up impacting millions of Indians working abroad.
Bikram Singh Majithia, affairs minister for non-resident Indians, told reporters that the move would send mixed signals to expatriates.
"On one hand, we are luring NRIs to invest in [the] country and become part of India's economic growth," said Majithia. "The service tax on remittances by them to their parent country would discourage them to help [the] country with their remittance."
According to World Bank data, India is the world's largest recipient of foreign remittances, as approximately $64 billion worth were sent last year alone.
Despite the considerable amount of revenue from Indians and other people who send money online, India's economy has yet to take off. The World Bank says that India's gross domestic product – which is the total value of goods and service produced in a given year – slowed.
World Bank experts say one of the reasons why India's economic is lagging largely relates to a lack of infrastructure, particularly road development. In addition, strict rules and regulations imposed by the government have discouraged private investment, preventing the country from obtaining some of the financial means to kickstart its economy.
Pawn shops are a great resource to buy and sell things or get a short-term loan, and based on a recent survey, many are using these types of stores to send money to their families who still live in their native country. As a new poll indicates, this is particularly common among Filipinos.
According to a recent poll conducted by Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, approximately three in every four – 72 percent – of Filipinos surveyed said they had gone to a pawn shop location, such as Cebuana Lhuillier within the last year not only to buy and sell things but also to pay bills and conduct remittance business.
Nestor Espenilla, deputy governor for the BSP, told reporters that pawn shops are known for a lot of things, but up to now, some may not have realized that they can occasionally be used as a resource to send and receive money.
"The way pawn shops have been used to access financial services is transformational," said Espenilla.
He added that while a variety of branches are available in the Philippines, pawn shops serve as an additional location many people rely on to obtain their international wire transfer.
If you've been in the U.S. for any amount of time, you've likely seen a pawn shop in your area. According to statistics gathered by History.com, there are approximately 12,000 pawn shops in the U.S. alone. Further, with an estimated 25 million Americans not having a bank account, people will often go to pawn shops if they want to obtain a short-term loan.
Xoom knows that pawn shops can be a very convenient location for many to receive money sent by their friends and family abroad, which is why it has partnered with more than 1,600 Cebuana Lhuillier locations to allow for cash pickup. Many other locations are also available for cash pickup or bank deposit.
Or, if door-to-door delivery is more convenient, that can be arranged as well. Rush delivery is available to people who live in the Metro Manila area at no extra cost. What's more, your recipient may get their money within six hours or less.