DHS Modernizes Cuban and Haitian Family Reunification Parole Processes

WASHINGTON – The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has announced significant updates to the Cuban and Haitian family reunification parole (FRP) processes, marking a modernized approach to enhance efficiency. Released in Federal Register notices, these changes, a result of stakeholder feedback, aim to simplify the process by allowing most steps to be completed securely online, eliminating the challenges associated with travel, time, and paperwork. The invitation-only process remains intact.

The Cuban family reunification parole (CFRP) and Haitian family reunification parole (HFRP) processes, designed to foster family unity, have undergone this modernization following comprehensive measures outlined in April by DHS and the Department of State, aligning with the Los Angeles Declaration on Migration and Protection.

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas stated, “Lawful pathways, combined with strong enforcement, are effective at reducing irregular migration to the United States and preventing migrants from putting their lives in the hands of smugglers. This modernization of the family reunification parole processes improves our ability to maintain the integrity of our vetting and screening standards, responds to important feedback from stakeholders in both the Cuban and Haitian communities, and ensures meaningful access – consistent with our values – for potential beneficiaries.”

Commencing on August 11, 2023, the updated processes will predominantly operate online, with exceptions for a panel physician exam overseas and an in-person parole determination made upon arrival by air at an interior U.S. Port of Entry. Eligible beneficiaries are no longer required to be physically present in Cuba or Haiti, providing more accessibility.

Leveraging technological advancements since CFRP’s initiation in 2007 and HFRP’s inception in 2014, DHS seeks to improve process efficiencies. Identity verification and eligibility will continue to be assessed on a case-by-case basis, with rigorous security vetting.

Initiating with an invitation from the Department of State’s National Visa Center, the petitioning U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident family member can kickstart the FRP process by filing Form I-134A, Online Request to be a Supporter and Declaration of Financial Support. This initiates the advance travel authorization and parole consideration for the principal beneficiary and any derivative beneficiary spouse and children.

The updates include sending a letter to CFRP petitioners with a pending Form I-131 for a principal beneficiary awaiting an interview in Havana. Furthermore, the HFRP process is expanded, allowing all Haitian approved principal beneficiaries to participate, regardless of the Form I-130 approval date.

DHS is committed to facilitating safe and orderly family reunification, discouraging dangerous journeys, and aligning with U.S. national interests and foreign policy priorities.

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