Immigration Issues/visiting usa

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Question
I am a US citizen, married for 14 years to a UK citizen. We have a son with dual nationality and have resided legally in the UK since 1993.

We would like to visit family in the US but my wife is concerned she will be deported if she travels with on the VWP, as she has overstayed a visa in the past.

She first entered on an indefinate visa in 1987 and stayed for a number of years. She also overstayed in 1992 for less than a year when travelling on the VWP. She deeply regrets her actions now but was unaware of the gravity of this offence at the time.

She has visited the States on the VWP also in 1994 and 1996 for vacations and experienced no problems and did not overstay on these occasions. We are permanently settled in the UK but I wish to take her to the US to see my family etc.

I do not want her to apply for a visitors visa in case it is declined as I feel she will be ok, because her overstay was so long ago. She has never been stopped or questioned about immigration fraud.

As her last visit was more than a decade ago will this ensure her ten year ban is now spent.

We have no intention of remaining in the US but my wife is so traumatised by the thought of deportation that she wants to cancel our trip.

Many thanks for your help.  

Answer
It may not come up but if they question her at the airport and find out about any overstaying they can refuse VWP entry and make her go back and apply for a visa. She is not aubject tio the 3 or 10 year bar for illegal presence becasue her overstays occurred before 1997.

Regards,

Robert

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