US - Immigration


Key Takeaways

Marriage must be after 90 days of entry, otherwise
After marriage, the U.S. citizen spouse can file Form I-130 (Petition for Alien Relative), and the foreign national can file Form I-485. These forms can be filed simultaneously.
I-130 processing time varies widely from a few months to over a year
CR-1 Visa: Issued to spouses of U.S. citizens who have been married for less than two years. It grants conditional permanent resident status. After two years, the couple must file to remove the conditions on residence.

Adjustment of Status (AOS) application (Form I-485)
If your non-immigrant visa (such as a tourist visa) expires while you are in the United States and you have a pending Adjustment of Status (AOS) application (Form I-485), you are generally allowed to stay in the United States. This is because the filing of I-485 allows you to remain in the United States while it is being processed, even if your original non-immigrant visa expires in the interim.
While your I-485 is pending, you can apply for Employment Authorization Document (EAD) and Advance Parole (AP) using Form I-765 and Form I-131, respectively, allowing you to work and travel internationally (and return to the U.S.) while waiting for a decision on your application.
Leaving the U.S. without Advance Parole before the approval of your I-485 can result in the abandonment of your adjustment application.
Typically, it's recommended to file Form I-131 concurrently with the Form I-485, Adjustment of Status Application. This way, both can be processed simultaneously, saving time.
The processing times for Advance Parole can vary but usually range between 2 to 5 months, or sometimes longer, depending on the USCIS office handling the case.
It is crucial not to leave the U.S. before receiving the AP document; otherwise, the I-485 could be considered abandoned.

When applying for Adjustment of Status (AOS) using Form I-485, several documents are typically required to support your application. Below is a general list of documents needed; however, the specific documents might vary based on the individual's circumstances, like the basis of the AOS application (e.g., family-sponsored, employment-based).

1. Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status:

Completed and signed.

2. Government-Issued Photo Identification:

A copy of a government-issued identification document, such as a passport.

3. Birth Certificate:

A copy of your birth certificate.
If the document is not in English, a certified translation must be provided.

4. Passport Photos:

Two identical passport-style photos.

5. Inspection and Admission or Parole Documentation:

A copy of Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, or other proof of lawful admission or parole into the United States.

6. Evidence of Eligibility:

Evidence of the basis for your AOS. For family-sponsored AOS, it may include:
A copy of the approval notice or receipt for the family-sponsored petition (Form I-130).
For employment-based, a copy of the approval notice or receipt for the employment-based petition (Form I-140).

7. Application Fee:

The appropriate fee or a completed Form I-912, Request for Fee Waiver, if you qualify for a fee waiver.

8. Affidavit of Support:

A completed Form I-864, Affidavit of Support, if applicable, usually for family-sponsored applications.

9. Medical Examination:

A sealed envelope containing the results of your medical examination, conducted by a USCIS-approved civil surgeon, using Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record.

10. Employment Authorization and Advance Parole (Optional):

Completed Forms I-765 (Application for Employment Authorization) and I-131 (Application for Travel Document) if you wish to work and/or travel outside the United States while your I-485 is pending.

11. Evidence of Bona Fide Marriage (If Based on Marriage):

Evidence establishing the authenticity of the marriage, like marriage certificate, joint financial documents, photos together, etc.

12. Criminal History:

Any records of criminal history, like arrest records, court records, etc., if applicable.

13. Waiver Applications (If Needed):

Any applicable waivers with supporting documentation if needed, like a waiver for inadmissibility.
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