What Is Adjustment Of Status And When Can I Apply For It?
If you are already living in the United States through an immigrant visa, such as a K-1 visa for fiancé(e)s or an IR1 visa for a spouse, you may be wondering about your ability to apply for lawful permanent resident status so that you can remain in the country. Applying for lawful permanent resident status is also known as applying for a Green Card, or going through the process of “adjustment of status.” In order to be eligible to apply for a Green Card, an immigrant must meet certain eligibility requirements. It is important to know that eligibility requirements vary based on whether you are applying for a Green Card as a person on a family or marriage visa, on an employment visa, as a special immigrant, or as a person currently residing in the United States as a result of obtaining a status as a refugee, asylee, human trafficking or crime or abuse victim.
Our Houston marriage and family visa lawyers can provide you with more information about Green Card eligibility through family, and what the process of adjustment of status will involve.
Eligibility for a Green Card through Family
In order to be eligible to apply for a Green Card under the category of a family member, you must fall into one of the following categories:
- Immediate relative of a U.S. citizen, including a spouse, an unmarried child under the age of 21, or a parent with a child who is a U.S. citizen over the age of 21;
- Another relative of a current U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, including an unmarried child of a U.S. citizen over the age of 21, married child of a U.S. citizen, sibling of a U.S. citizen, spouse of a lawful permanent resident, or unmarried child under of a lawful permanent resident;
- Fiancé or fiancée of a U.S. citizen currently in the U.S. through a K-1 visa, or a person admitted to the U.S. through a K-2 visa as a child of the fiancé or fiancée;
- Widower of a U.S. citizen; or
- VAWA self-petitioner, meaning that you are the abused parent of a U.S. citizen, or the abused spouse or abused unmarried child of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident.
How Adjustment of Status Works
Once you have determined that you are eligible to apply for a Green Card, there are a number of steps for adjustment of status. In general, for a Green Card through family, the steps will usually include:
- Sponsor must file immigrant petition (usually form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative) and Green Card petition;
- You must file Form I-485;
- Attend your appointment at the Application Support Center (ASC);
- Where necessary, attend your USCIS interview;
- Respond to any requests for additional evidence if necessary;
- Check the status of your case; and
- Receive a decision on your Green Card application.
Contact a Houston Green Card Lawyer Today
If you have questions about applying for a Green Card as a family member or spouse who is currently residing in the United States, you should seek advice from an experienced Houston marriage and family visa attorney who can speak with you today about seeking adjustment of status. Do not hesitate to get in touch with a lawyer at BBA Immigration for assistance.