Office for Refugees and Immigrants (ORI) Eligible Populations

Several factors determine eligibility to ORI services, including but not limited to, immigration status, Massachusetts residence, date of entry, and income. Contact each program for eligibility standards.


A person who cannot return to his or her country because of well-founded fear of persecution on account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group, or political opinion. A refugee receives this status before entering the U.S.


A person who meets the definition of refugee, and who is already within the U.S. when he/she applies for and receives asylum. His/her immediate family may be granted derivative asylee status overseas. 

Cuban/Haitian Entrant: 

A national of Cuba or Haiti who has been granted parole status, or has applied for asylum, or is in removal proceedings until a final, non-appealable, legally enforceable order of removal is issued.  (45 CFR 401 and ORR Regulations:

Amerasians from Vietnam: 

Individuals fathered by a U.S. citizen and born in Vietnam after January 1, 1962, and before January 1, 1976.

Certified Victim of a Severe Form of Trafficking: 

A person who, through force, fraud or coercion, has performed a commercial sex act; or who has been recruited or transported for or provided forced labor, and who has been certified by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Refugee Resettlement..

Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) Holders from Iraq and Afghanistan:

Individuals Who were employed by or on behalf of the U.S. Government.

Groups eligible for ORI-administered state-funded services:

Legal Permanent Residents (Green Card holders) are eligible for citizenship assistance.

Certain TANF/TAFDC clients are eligible for employment services.

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