An application for permanent residence, known as “Adjustment of Status” is a technical term used only in U.S. filings. It simply means an application filed by an alien who is physically in the U.S.
to adjust his or her current non-immigrant status to immigrant status (permanent resident status) after his or her I-130/I-140 immigration petition has been approved. The purpose of the immigrant petition is to get an official determination that you qualify as an immigrant under a particular category and preference. Green Card While Inside the United States:
Effective July 31, 2002, the USCIS allows concurrent filing
of an I-485 adjustment of status application together with an immigration petition if an immigrant visa number is available
to the alien at the time of filing. The package is filed at the same time and mailed together with all required filing fees and supporting documentation to the same filing location. Who Can File Concurrently?
Consular Processing and Concurrent Filing.
- Immediate relatives of U.S. citizens living in the United States;
- Most employment-based applicants and their eligible family members when a visa number is immediately available;
- Special Immigrant Juveniles;
- Self-petitioning battered spouse or child if:
- The abusive spouse or parent is a U.S. citizen, or
- If an immigrant visa number is immediately available;
- Certain Armed Forces Members applying for a special immigrant visa.
Concurrent filing cannot
occur in consular processed cases, as the immigrant petition is filed with USCIS and the application for an immigrant visa is filed with the Department of State. Therefore concurrent filing is only allowed
in the context of an immigrant who is adjusting to permanent resident status (a Green Card) while in the
United States. Visa Availability and Concurrent Filing.
Concurrent filing is always allowed for all immediate relatives of a United States citizen, since there are no numeric limitations in this category. However, in some categories, even if there is a visa number available at the time of filing, concurrent filing is not allowed as the intending immigrant must have an approved basis of eligibility (i.e. an approved petition) before being allowed to file for adjustment of status.
Green Card While Outside the United States.
If you are currently outside the United States and are an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen, you can become a permanent resident through consular processing. Consular processing
is when USCIS works with the Department of State to issue a visa on an approved Form I-130/140 petition when a visa is available. You may then travel on the visa and will officially become a permanent resident when admitted at the U.S. port of entry. The Department of State will notify you when you are eligible to apply for an immigrant visa. If you do not apply for an immigrant visa within one year following notification from the Department of State, your petition may be terminated.
Some additional answers can be found at the USCIS Blog: http://blog.uscis.gov/search/label/Green%20Card
. At Guzhva Law Firm, PLLC
we are providing thoughtful solutions and measurable value to each individual situation. Because U.S. immigration law and regulations significantly affect how foreign nationals may qualify for immigrant visas, it is important that you obtain up to date information about the provisions that apply to you. Our Seattle immigration attorney can help you prepare the forms and supporting documents with much less of your time involved and with much more accuracy. Furthermore, our attorney will be able to inform you of any potential problems in your particular case.