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DHS/USCIS RIN: 1615-AB96 Publication ID: Fall 2013 
Title: Application of the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 to Unaccompanied Alien Children Seeking Asylum  
Abstract: This rule implements the provisions of the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 (TVPRA), Public Law 110-457, 122 Stat. 5074 (Dec. 23, 2008) relating to unaccompanied alien children seeking asylum. Specifically, the rule proposes to amend Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Justice (DOJ) regulations relating to asylum applications filed by unaccompanied alien children. The rule will amend both DHS and DOJ regulations to reflect that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has initial jurisdiction over any asylum application filed by an unaccompanied alien child. The rule will also add new special procedures for all children in interviews before USCIS officers and for unaccompanied alien children in proceedings before immigration judges in the Executive Office for Immigration Review. 
Agency: Department of Homeland Security(DHS)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: No  Unfunded Mandates: Undetermined 
CFR Citation: Not Yet Determined (To search for a specific CFR, visit the Code of Federal Regulations.
Legal Authority: PL 110-457 
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need: The TVPRA mandated promulgation of regulations taking into account the specialized needs of unaccompanied alien children and addressing both procedural and substantive aspects of handling unaccompanied alien children's cases. This rule will replace existing agency guidance on the specialized needs of unaccompanied alien children. The rule will also incorporate policies in agency guidance implementing the TVPRA. Such guidance has been in effect since March 2009 and, based on experience gained in following the guidance, will be revised in the rule.

Summary of the Legal Basis: The purpose of this rule is to comply with the TVPRA mandate to promulgate regulations taking into account the specialized needs of unaccompanied alien children and addressing both procedural and substantive aspects of handling unaccompanied alien children's cases.

Alternatives: N/A

Anticipated Costs and Benefits: This rule will codify existing agency guidance on the specialized needs of unaccompanied alien children in accordance with implementing the TVPRA. In addition, the regulation will codify improvements that DHS has implemented over the passage of time since TVPRA to incorporate lessons learned and operational efficiencies for USCIS and EOIR. DHS anticipates that this rule would result in benefits both to the Federal Government by streamlining the processing of cases for asylum by unaccompanied children, and to the public by ensuring that DHS regulations are transparent in the eligibility and application requirements for this vulnerable population. DHS anticipates that any costs associated with establishing eligibility for asylum under the TVPRA would be outweighed by the benefits of this rulemaking.

Risks: N/A

Timetable:
Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  09/00/2014   
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Undetermined  Government Levels Affected: Federal 
Federalism: No 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Related Agencies: Joint: DOJ; 
Agency Contact:
Ted Kim
Deputy Chief, Asylum Division, Office of Refugee, Asylum, and International Operations
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW., Suite 6030,
Washington, DC 20259
Phone:202 272-1614
Fax:202 272-1994
Email: ted.h.kim@uscis.dhs.gov

 
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