An adjustment of status in the United States is one of the ways in which an immigrant can obtain a green card. Through this process, an eligible person can obtain a number of benefits, such as permission to stay in the country, even if your nonimmigrant visa expires.
Therefore, through an adjustment of status we a person can get a step closer to applying for legal permanent residence in the United States. This immigration process can be an option for foreigners who reside within the country and comply with a series of documents and requirements that we will explain in this new Blog.
Three important requirements for adjusting your status
Many people do not know if they are eligible for an adjustment of their status. This is understandable given the numerous changes that the administration of the United States government continually makes. Not all immigrants in the country are eligible to make an adjustment to their status.
To begin with, an applicant for adjustment of status must meet the requirements for permanent residency. If a person does not meet these requirements they may be denied and subsequently deported. For this reason, it is very important to seek help from an immigration lawyer who knows how to handle adjustment of status and permanent residence cases.
Here are the requirements you must meet to make an adjustment of status in the United States:
- Physical presence in the United States. If the situation is that you do not reside in the country at the time of the adjustment of status, you cannot carry out any procedure related to this goal. First of all, it is necessary to apply for an immigrant visa at the consulate or embassy of your country of origin.
- Legal admission in the United States. As we previously mentioned, in order for you to make the adjustment of status, you must have a physical presence in the United States. However, when entering the country you must pass through an entry post, where an officer allows you to enter and will legally admit you into the country.
- Do not become a public charge. In the past month, the Trump administration approved the new Public Charge standard, which specifies and adds the specific elements for which a person is considered a public charge in the United States and cannot apply for adjustment of status.
According to the USCIS, a person is considered a public charge if he or she is likely to depend on the government to survive in the country. Therefore, foreigners who wish to adjust their status must present the necessary evidence to prove that they can support themselves and are not likely to need help supporting themselves. For instance having a job, a place to live, owning a home can help.
Adjustment of status through your family or work
As you may know, adjustment of status is a process that allows an immigrant to apply for lawful permanent residence status without having to leave the United States. One of the simplest ways that the Zambrano & Ruiz immigration law firm advises clients to pursue is to make the adjustment of status through a family member or a job petition.
One of the easiest ways to adjust status and become a permanent resident is to have a husband, wife, father, mother, or children who are US citizens or permanent residents of the United States request your adjustment.
In order to initiate this type of adjustment, your family member must fill out the I-130 form as soon as possible. Once they do this successfully, preferably with the help of an experienced immigration attorney, you can get a visa that allows you to be in the country legally,
“Use this form if you are a citizen or legal permanent resident of the United States who needs to demonstrate the relationship you have with certain foreign family members who wish to immigrate to the United States.
Filing Form I-130 is just the first step in helping a family member immigrate to the United States. Filing or approving this petition generally does not give your family member any status in the United States.
Once we approve the petition, your family member can apply to become a lawful permanent resident. ”
– USCIS –
Steps to request Adjustment of Status
Submit the petition
The first thing you need to consider before you begin filling out adjustment of status forms, is the category for which you are going to request the adjustment of status in the country. It may be related to family, employment, some special immigrant permits, or even humanitarian programs. Each of them has a specific form, in addition to the I-485 form.
Check the availability of your visa
It is very important that you know that in order to process Form I-485, the visa must be available in its category. To do this, remember two things:
- Perfectly knowing the visa requirements and not applying for one that is not, will help you avoid entering the deportation process.
- Consult an immigration lawyer who can advise you on your application to avoid wasting time, money or risking unintended results such as deportation.
File Form I-485.
It is important to know that there are very few visa categories that do not require this form. It is a necessary form to apply for Permanent Residence.
What is Form I-485 for? This form is the application you need to adjust immigration status if you are a foreign citizen who is residing in the country with a temporary visa or who wishes to change your visa.
Present biometric tests
Once all the documents have been submitted and are reviewed, you will receive a notification to go perform biometric tests and get your fingerprints taken.
Biometric tests are used to carry out the corresponding security investigations for each applicant and the subsequent creation of a green card, provided that you obtain one.
Attend your interview
Once you reach this step, you are almost finished with all the necessary steps for your adjustment of status. USCIS will notify you of the date, time and place of your interview, where under oath you must answer all questions related to your request. Remember to bring all of the documents you applied with so that the USCIS officers can evaluate your case and make a decision.
Wait for the final decision
As soon as the interview is over and all the necessary security and documentation investigations have been carried out, the decision will be forwarded to the address you provided. If you change your place of residence, you must notify your attorney and USCIS, immediately, since you will be notified by mail of important updates.
Adjustment of Status With Zambrano & Ruiz
Did you know that making an error in your request forms, in the delivery of documents or in the I-485 form can cause delays in the decision of your request? Did you know that these errors can cause an expensive denial? Did you know that if you do not meet all the requirements, the worst case scenario is that you can be put in a process of deportation?
The adjustment of status application allows you to obtain great benefits in the United States, such as being eligible for a green card and being able to stay in the country lawfully.
At Zambrano & Ruiz immigration law firm, we are experts and have a lot of experience in assisting clients through their adjustment of status and permanent residence cases. Do not miss the opportunity to get help from lawyers who know the processes like the back of their hand. Call us now for a free consultation and don’t miss the opportunity to get closer to achieving your goals in the United States.