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Form I-508, Request for Waiver of Certain Rights, Privileges, Exemptions, and Immunities

Form I-508, Request for Waiver of Certain Rights, Privileges, Exemptions, and Immunities

Certain non-immigrant visa statuses exempt individuals from paying U.S. income taxes on earned wages paid by a foreign government or international organizations. This exemption provides immunity to criminal and civil charges. Individuals seeking permanent resident status (or looking to maintain permanent resident status) can waive this exemption by completing Form I-508, Request for Waiver of Certain Rights, Privileges, Exemptions, and Immunities.

This form is required in the I-485 application to adjust status to lawful permanent resident status. 

The I-508 form is used by individuals who are applying for US citizenship who currently have nonimmigrant visas in one of three categories: 

  • Category A Visa – Diplomat or foreign government official 
  • Category E Visa – Treaty Trader or Treaty Investor
  • Category G Visa – Employees of international organizations and NATO 

The form is filed with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Once the applicant has been granted U.S. citizenship, they no longer need to file Form I-508.

Overall, Form I-508 serves as a way for non-citizens to demonstrate their commitment to the United States and its laws and principles.  It is an important part of the naturalization process and helps to ensure that all new citizens are prepared to take on the rights and responsibilities of U.S. citizenship. 

Qualifications for a G  (G-1)-(G-5) Visa 

You may be eligible for a G visa if you are a diplomat, an official government representative, or a member of the armed forces. If you are employed by an international organization such as the United Nations, you may also be eligible for a G visa. In addition, immediate family members of G visa holders are also eligible for G visa status.

(G-1) – This is a diplomatic visa issued to a principal representative (senior official) of a foreign government recognized by the U.S. to enter the U.S. to work for an international organization (not for personal business purposes). This visa does not expire and there is no need to prove the applicant has intentions to return to their foreign residence. Any immediate family members of the G-1 visa holder are also eligible for a G-1 visa. 

(G-2) – This is a diplomatic visa issued to an accredited representative (but not the principal representative) of a foreign government recognized by the U.S. to work for an internal organization in the U.S. Any immediate family members of the G-2 visa holder are also eligible for a G-2 visa. 

(G-3) – This is a diplomatic visa issued to representatives of unrecognized foreign governments to enter the U.S.  to work for an international organization. Any immediate family members of the G-3 visa holder are also eligible for a G-3 visa. 

(G-4) -This is a  diplomatic visa issued to employees of international organizations of any rank to enter and work in the U.S. for duties specifically related to their work.  Any immediate family members of the G-4 visa holder are also eligible for a G-4 visa. 

(G-5) – This is a nonimmigrant visa issued to personal employees or domestic workers of G1-G4 visa holders. Any immediate family members of a G-5 visa holder are also eligible for a G-5 visa. 

Qualifications for a (NATO-1)-(NATO -6) Visa 

The (NATO-1) through (NATO-6) visa is reserved for military members and their dependents as well as civilian employees of a government agency or international organization that is accredited by NATO and their dependents.

Qualifications for an (A-1) and (A-2) Visa 

You qualify for an  A-1 visa if you are one of the following individuals: 

  • A head of state or government, regardless of the purpose of your travel.
  • A government official coming to serve at a foreign embassy or consulate of the United States as an ambassador or consul. 
  • A government minister or cabinet member visiting the U.S. for official duties.
  • A European Union or African Union delegation representative.
  • An immediate family member of an A-1 visa holder.

You qualify for an A-2 visa if you are one of the following individuals: 

  • A full-time employee assigned by your government to work at a foreign embassy or consulate in the United States.
  • A government official representing your government to perform official government-related duties for no more than 90 days.
  • Foreign military members stationed at a U.S. military base or assigned to a foreign embassy or consulate in the United States.
  • Staff of European Union or African Union delegation representatives.
  • An immediate family member of an A-2 visa holder.

Qualifications for an (E-1) – (E-3) Visa

You may be eligible for a category E visa if you are a treaty trader or investor from a country with which the United States has a treaty of commerce seeking to travel to the United States for business purposes.

You Qualify for an E-1 (Treaty Trader) Visa if You Meet the Following Requirements: 

You must own at least 50 percent of the enterprise and the enterprise must be substantial, meaning there is a sizable and continuing volume of trade. Additionally, 50 percent of the trade must be between the United States and the enterprise. You must be an essential employee of the enterprise, employed in a supervisory or executive capacity, or have a highly specialized skill set that is essential to the operation of the enterprise.

You Qualify for an E-2 (Treaty Investor) Visa if You Meet the Following Requirements: 

Like E-1 qualifications, you must own 50 percent of the business.. The investment must be substantial, with investment funds or assets committed and irrevocable. The investment must be a real operating enterprise. Finally, you must be coming to the United States to develop and direct the enterprise, and if you are not the principal investor, you must be considered an essential employee.

Do You Have to File an I-508 Form if You Have an E-3 Visa? 

E-3 visas are reserved for nationals of Australia. If you are an E-3 Visa holder you are not required to file form I-508 as you have no special rights or privileges to waive.

Form I-508 Instructions

Form I-508 is six pages in total with five parts that you are required to fill out to qualify for the waiver.

Part 1: Contains all of your personal information as well as noting what organization you work for and the address of that organization. 

Part 2: Your signature waiving any and all diplomatic rights, privileges, and immunity. 

Part 3 & 4: Signatures from an interpreter (if needed) and a checkbox indicating the applicant understood the implications of submitting the request. 

Part 5: Signatures and contact information of any preparer of the request other than the applicant. 

Currently, there is no filing fee for a Form-508. 

Law Firm 1 Form I-508 Services

As a visa holder in the United States, it’s important to understand and submit all required forms. Government forms, visa requirements, and qualifications can be complex, but it is crucial to properly understand them in order to maintain your visa status.

If you have any questions about your potential visa status or Form I-508, contact the immigration attorneys Scott D. Pollock & Associates P.C. With over 70 years of combined experience, we have been helping individuals with nonimmigrant and immigrant visas alike navigate the tax season. 

Contact us via our online contact form today. We look forward to hearing from you.

 

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