Adjustment of Status

Apply For Permanent Resident Status in the United States

If you are already in the United States, you may be able to ask for your permanent residence (green card) without returning to your home country. This is known as “adjustment.” You will have to file several immigration forms that I will help you with.

In addition, you will need to provide the government with very specific evidence proving eligibility. I will make sure your application for adjustment of status is quickly and correctly done so you can get your permanent residence as soon as possible. Specific personal, and professional, and humanitarian ties to the United States make an immigrant eligible for adjustment.

Attorney McLean's most popular practice area

Many types of family relationships with United States citizens or permanent residents, such as parent/child, spouse/spouse, and brother/sister make you eligible to immigrate to the United States. Sometimes with these relationships permanent residence is immediately available to you, other times there are delays of up to 20 years! My goal is to create the shortest possible time for you or your loved one to get their immigration status in the United States.

Most popular practice area and accounts for most immigration to the United States.

If you entered the United States legally with a visa, even if your visa expired or you are no longer in lawful status, and you have a United States citizen parent, and you are under 21 years old, you can immediately apply for adjustment. Sometimes, you will automatically become a United States citizen automatically when you enter the United States because your parent is a citizen, and your lawyer will help you figure out if that happened. But, if you do not automatically become a citizen when you enter the United States, you will want to apply for adjustment. This is especially relevant in the case of a stepparent/stepchild relationship. Stepchildren of United States citizens can file for adjustment as soon as they enter the United States, or as soon as the relationship is created, as long as it was created before the stepchild turned 18 years old. Also, It is important to file for adjustment before you turn 21 years old because the government does not consider you a child anymore after you turn 21.

Most popular practice area and accounts for most immigration to the United States.

If you entered the United States legally with a visa, and you have a permanent resident parent, and you are under 21 years old, you can apply for adjustment. Unlike children of United States citizens, you must be in lawful status when you apply for adjustment. Significant waiting times do exist for children and stepchildren of permanent residents before they become eligible to adjust, so it is important to contact a lawyer to help you stay in lawful status while you wait. Also, before you turn 21 years old, it is important that your permanent resident parent files a petition that will make you eligible to apply for adjustment after the waiting period.

Most popular practice area and accounts for most immigration to the United States.

If you entered the United States legally on a visa, even if your visa expired or you are no longer in lawful status, and you have a United States citizen child who is 21 years old or older, you can apply for adjustment. Many times, people are in the United States unlawfully for almost the entire 21 years with their citizen child or children who eventually turn 21. This is ok. You can apply for adjustment as soon as your child turns 21 years old. You can also apply for work authorization and for a travel permit, and you will receive those benefits even before you get your green card in most cases. One of the best parts about applying for adjustment as the parent of a United States citizen is that you do not have to go to an interview with a government official before receiving your green card.

Most popular practice area and accounts for most immigration to the United States.

If you entered the United States legally on a visa, and you have a permanent resident parent, and you are over 21 years old, you can apply for adjustment. You must be in lawful status when you apply for adjustment, and extremely long waiting times exist for sons and daughters (over 21) of permanent residents, so it is important to contact a lawyer to help you stay in lawful status while you wait. One of the biggest advantages to this category is that it has derivatives. This means that in most cases your children can apply for adjustment with you. However, if you are married, you do not qualify for adjustment in this category. Make sure you speak with a lawyer about all these issues before applying for adjustment.

Most popular practice area and accounts for most immigration to the United States.

If you entered the United States legally on a visa, and you have a United States citizen brother or sister, you can apply for adjustment. You must be in lawful status when you apply for adjustment, and extremely long waiting times exist for brothers and sisters of United States citizens. For immigrants coming from some countries through this relationship, the waiting time has gotten as long as 24 years. Still, some people are still able to apply for adjustment through a brother or sister, so make sure you discuss any relationship to a United States citizen with a lawyer.

You can apply as soon as you get married.

If you entered the United States with a visa, even if your visa expired or you are no longer in lawful status, and you are married to a United States citizen, you can apply for adjustment. You can apply as soon as you get married. You can also apply for work authorization and for a travel permit, and you will receive those benefits even before you get your green card in most cases. You will have to go to an interview with a government officer, but I am available to go with you.

DOCUMENTS NECESSARY FOR INTERVIEW FOR MARRIAGE-BASED ADJUSTMENT (find summary on self-help page):

  • Citizen’s long form birth certificate, showing parents’ names, date of birth, and place of birth.
  • Citizen’s passport, if available.
  • Immigrant’s long form birth certificate, with translation if necessary.
  • Immigrant’s passport with visa, if available.
  • Immigrant’s I-94 document. The I-94 documents are available online if the immigrant arrived in the United States after April 1, 2013.
  • Divorce decrees from either person from any country, with translation if necessary.
  • Any certified criminal dispositions of immigrant, with translation if necessary.

SUGGESTED EVIDENCE OF A VALID MARRIAGE (find summary on self-help page):

  • Birth certificates of any children born to the marriage.
  • Property leases with both names.
  • Joint bank accounts and tax returns
  • Life insurance with immigrant as primary beneficiary.
  • Phone bills with both names.
  • Pictures that document relationship and marriage.
  • Online message exchanges between immigrant and citizen.

Unlike spouses of United States citizens, you must be in lawful status to apply.

If you entered the United States legally with a visa, and you are married to a permanent resident of the United States, you may be able to apply for adjustment. Unlike spouses of United States citizens, you must be in lawful status to apply. But, you will get the same benefits (work authorization and a travel permit), before you go to your interview with a government officer. Significant waiting times often exist for spouses of permanent residents before they become eligible to adjust, so make sure you contact a lawyer to help you stay in lawful status while you wait.

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