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What Is a Special Immigrant Juvenile Status? Definition, Uses and Importance.

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The 1990 act that allows certain undocumented children to become Lawful Permanent Residents was a result of the Special Immigrant Juvenile Status. This law only applies in state juvenile systems and, among other criteria such as abandonment or neglect by parents, grants beneficiaries access to an immigration path known as “Specialized Prosecutorial Compact” (SPC). The compact helps these specific individuals come out from living under unauthorized status while also ensuring they are well cared for during any legal proceedings

Certain undocumented immigrants under the age of 21 may be eligible for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), which is an immigration categorization for those who have been mistreated, neglected, or abandoned by one or both parents. Immigrant children in the state juvenile system who cannot be reunited with their biological parents because of abuse, abandonment, or neglect can apply for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status.

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