If you’re seeking to adjust your immigration status in the United States, understanding the adjustment of status process is crucial. This process allows you to change your status from a temporary immigrant to a permanent resident.
But what does adjustment of status entail? What are the requirements, the steps and the timeline? Here is what you should know.
What is an adjustment of status?
Adjustment of status is the process by which legal non-immigrants already present in the United States can apply for lawful permanent residency without having to return to their home country. It is typically available to individuals eligible for permanent residence through a family relationship, employment, refugee or asylum status or other special provisions.
Who is eligible for adjustment of status?
Eligibility for adjustment of status depends on several factors, including the immigration category and the applicant’s current immigration status. For instance, spouses, children, parents and siblings of U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents may be eligible for adjustment of status if a qualifying family member sponsors them. Other criteria include:
- Maintaining lawful status
- Having an approved immigrant petition
- Being physically present in the United States
- Demonstrating admissibility, among others
It’s important to note that eligibility requirements can be complex, and each category has specific criteria. The adjustment of status process involves a series of steps, including submitting the necessary forms, supporting documentation and fees to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS): It also includes a background check and an interview with an immigration officer.
The processing time varies depending on factors such as USCIS workload and case complexity. It may take several months to over a year to receive a decision from immigration.
Navigating the adjustment of status process can be complex, and even a small mistake or oversight can lead to delays or potential denial of your application. As such, it is advisable to have the necessary guidance throughout the process to increase your chances of a successful outcome.