US Immigration FAQs

Family & Marriage Visas

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A sponsor must sign a legally binding affidavit of support for the Beneficiary, guaranteeing that the Sponsor will be financially responsible to the U.S. Government should the Beneficiary every receive financial government assistance. This obligation continues until the Beneficiary has become a U.S. citizen or has worked in the United States for 40 qualifying quarters (about 10 years).

Yes, you may file the financial affidavit with a “joint” sponsor. The joint sponsor can be a family member or a close friend who is willing to be bound by the same obligations as you will be to the U.S. government should your wife require financial government assistance.

A Conditional 2-year Green Card is issued to spouses if on the day of the interview the marriage was less than two years. The spouses will need petition to remove the condition within 90 days before the conditional green card expires in order to obtain a 10-year green card.

If your child is over 21 years old, he may petition for your green card. There are other issues that may arise, depending on how you entered the U.S., which should be discussed with a licensed U.S. immigration attorney.

Yes, you may petition for your stepchild’s green card as long as your marriage to the mother took place before the child’s 18th birthday.

Remember that U.S. immigration officers do not know you or your spouse. They are not your family members or your friends and can only rely on paper and your testimony during the interview to determine the validity of your marriage. Documentation showing cohabitation is critical, along with evidence of financial comingling is one of our main requirements when filing a marriage based case for our clients.

U.S. Citizenship Naturalization

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A: The times will vary by location. USCIS’s processing times are constantly changing due to several factors, including internal changes, pandemics, weather, changes in the law, etc. Generally, it will take approximately 9 months after your application is filed to receive an interview date.

Yes, you will receive a biometrics appointment notice which will indicate the time and place where your fingerprints will be taken. This location will likely be the same place where your interview will be scheduled and where your ceremony will take plac

A name change can happen if you present proof that you have already legally changed your name as required by the laws of the state you reside in. Such proof can include a marriage certificate, divorce decree or a court order establishing your name change. If none of this applies to you, you can request your Oath of Allegiance for your Naturalization Ceremony be held in a court or request that a judge preside over the ceremony and request that the court change your name. If your request is granted, your new name will appear on your Certificate of Naturalization. Selecting this option will undoubtedly cause delays with the processing of your application

If you were born in the U.S. or any of its territories, you are generally a U.S. citizen by birth. 2. If you were born aboard and both of your parents are U.S. citizens and can demonstrate that at least one of your parents lived in the U.S. at some point, in most cases you will be considered a U.S. Citizen. 3. If you were born abroad and at least one of your parents is a U.S. Citizen, you might be a U.S. Citizen if you can demonstrate that your citizen parent lived at least 5 years in the U.S. prior to your birth and at least 2 of those 5 years in the U.S. were after your parent’s 14th birthday. Record of your birth abroad registered with a U.S. consulate or embassy will also serve as proof of your citizenship.

If you believe your application was denied in error, you can request a hearing with an immigration officer. Your denial letter will explain the process of filing this request. Information on form N-336 will be detailed in this letter. If your denial was because your failed the English or civics portion of the exam, you can reapply as soon as you feel prepared to do so.

If your card is already expired or will expire soon, you can still apply for citizenship as an expired card will not bar your for applying. However, you will encounter problems if you travel internationally, apply for a job, or apply for certain benefits.

DACA Visas

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On January 20, 2021, President Biden issued na executive order officially revoking the far-reaching enforcement priorities set out by the prior administration. Additionally, the government has stated that information provided to USCIS in DACA requests will not be proactively provided to ICE and/or CBP for the purpose of immigration enforcement, unless the requestor meets the criteria for the issuance of a Notice to Appear set forth in USCIS’s 2011 guidance.

If your DACA is expired, we recommend that, if eligible, you apply to renew as soon as possible.

If your DACA in valid, you may apply to replace a lost, stolen, or destroyed EAD/work permit by filing a new Form I-765 and paying the $495 filing fee. If your DACA has expired, you should renew your DACA with that apply for a new work permit.

Yes. A December 2020 court order fully restored the DACA program, which means that the government must accept advance parole applications. You may qualify for advance parole if you currently have DACA and you can prove that your travel abroad is based on employment, educational, or humanitarian purposes.

However, traveling on advance parole may come with some risks. CBP retains the authority to refuse entry, even if you have an approved advance parole document. If you would like to apply for advance parole you should speak to our DACA attorney so you can fully understand the potential risks associated with travel.

If your DACA is expiring, we strongly encourage you to renew as soon as possible. While you are not legally required to notify your employer that your work permit is expiring, your employer is obligated to make sure they are employing individuals that are authorized to work. If the employer asks you for a new work permit, you have until your current work permit expires to produce a new one. If you can’t do so by the date of expiration, your employer can legally terminate you.

We must continue to demand that state and local officials protect all immigrant communities from immigration enforcement. We must also advocate for inclusive federal legislation that provides a pathway to citizenship. Any policies that further harm, criminalize, or deport immigrant community members must be rejected. Additionally, because we are living through a pandemic and an economic crisis, we have to insist that COVID-19 relief packages extend protections and resources to immigrants who put their lives at risk to ensure this country continues to operate.

U.S. Employment Visa

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Once your Form I-485 is approved and you receive your card, you will be a lawful permanent resident; your card will be valid for 10 years, like all other green cards and will require you to renew it 90 days prior to its expiration.

Yes, you can. With an EB-3 a high school degree is sufficient. If you have an advanced degree you might want to consider applying for an EB-2.

Yes, not even a high school degree is a requirement. Your employer/sponsor will determine the qualifications needed for the job being offered. Generally, employers request at least some experience, a high school degree or a combination there of.

Yes, the regulations do not inhibit you from filing for different green cards simultaneously. This give you more chances of approval, should one get denied, the other may get approved. If both are approved, you can decide which one you prefer to proceed with.

Yes! The H-1B visa is not a requirement for and EB-3. There are many other nonimmigrant visas that allow for you to apply for an EB-3 such as the O, L, E and even F-1 Students. You may also apply for an EB-3 without any nonimmigrant visa if you are outside of the U.S.

Yes. However, this will require a determination that your household employer has enough assets to demonstrate they will be able to afford your salary, long term. Assuming they desire to employ you well into the future, this could be an excellent fit for you and them.

U.S. Student Visas

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This form is required to begin the F-1 student visa case with USCIS. Form I-20 notifies USCIS that you are eligible for F-1 Student Status. It certifies that you:
(1) are or expect to be a “bona fide” student;
(2) meet the school’s admissions requirements;
(3) will pursue a full course of study; and
(4) proved to the school that you have enough money to study and live in the U.S. without working illegally.
If your DACA is expired, we recommend that, if eligible, you apply to renew as soon as possible.

The major difference between OPT and CPT is the period of time when you are eligible for these programs and the type of work allowed in each program. OPT can be completed before or after graduation, while CPT must be completed before graduation. CPT employment is part of your major curriculum that allows students to work in a paid or unpaid internship, practicum, or cooperative (co-op) education program. CPT must be required by your major and if it not, you must receive course credit. Only certain employers participate in CPT. Moreover, OPT is not employer specific and allows work, not an internship, and you do not need to earn course credit.

You can apply for your F-1 student visa 120 days before the start date of your course as indicated on form I-20.

The USCIS wants confidence that you will return to your home country at the end of your studies and that you are a bona fide student, genuinely interested in pursuing your studies in the U.S. This can at times include evidence of your economic interest in your home country, career goals and objectives, social roots and evidence of a sable life already built. Our legal team will work closely with you to help establish the types of documents that will look favorably in your application submission.

Form I-20 will indicate the amount of money you must have available to cover the first year of expenses. This amount will include your tuition and fees along with living expenses for you and your dependents, if applicable. If you do not have enough funds immediately available, you can have a financial sponsor included in your application. You cannot combine your funds with your sponsor, your sponsor must show they have the entire amount you will need readily available in their account.

Yes! Depending on your status you can change your status to that of an F-1 and begin your studies without having to re-enter the U.S., saving you time and money.