View Full Version : Autism and Green Card

11-14-14, 04:23 PM
Has anyone had experience of successfully applying for a green card despite being autistic?

I belong to an expats in the USA forum, and asked there if anyone had successfully applied for a Green Card despite the applicant being autistic. They suggested I ask here since there are more folks with direct experience of autism here, but perhaps less experience of the immigration process into the USA. (Note: a Green Card is the short name for the right to permanently live in the USA that is granted after a very complex application process).

Part of the qualifications for obtaining a green card is that a medical examiner (a doctor) has to affirm that any mental disorder does not mean the applicant is likely to harm himself or others (these are questions on a medical questionnaire, and there is a physical interview and examination).

My grandson (the person we want the green card for) is severely autistic and requires round the clock supervision. As anyone here already knows, such a child (he's 9 years old) can very easily harm himself and others. He has virtually no fear of harming himself, so he does end up with bruises from running in to things; he'll happily try and climb out a second story window onto the roof, etc. And, in the playground, he will accidentally/uncaringly knock another child over while running around. Those familiar with autism will recognise this behaviour and know this is not willful meanness, but an inability to empathize or understand "normal" social behaviour.

So it's a 100% certainty the doctor will have to say "Yes, this person could represent a harm to himself or others."

But will that matter if the cause is Autism? After all, we're talking about a 9-year old who might improve.

Autism isn't the same as, say, having a mental disorder that involves behaving like a criminal psychopath, where the danger to yourself or others is of a completely different nature. I imagine it's persons with mental disorders that make them a "dangerous person" and therefore "undesirable" for admission to the USA that the government is worried about. (Whether you agree that's how the borders should be controlled or not, that's what it is.)

However, I'd like to believe that a child with an autism disorder is viewed differently, and not as an "undesirable alien".

Anyone with real life experience of this problem? Where the authorities had no problem granting a green card to a (very) autistic child.