USCIS receives and adjudicates approximately 6 million petitions and applications annually from individuals and employers. These petitions and applications typically allow foreign nationals to stay in United States as lawful permanent residents (LPR) or immigrants, to stay temporarily to work as nonimmigrants for some other purpose, or to obtain U.S. citizenship.

Family-Based Immigration Petition

  • Permanent Residence (“Green card”) for you and any unmarried foreign-born child/ adopted child under 21, through Marriage to U.S. Citizen.
  • Permanent Residence (“Green card”) Petition for Parents of U.S. Citizen children over 21.
  • Adjustment of Status Petition filed in U.S. with permanent residency petition.
  • Immigrant Visa as battered spouse, child or parent (Violence Against Women Act) (VAWA).
  • Finance Visa Petition
  • All other Family Preference Immigration Visa
  • Removal of Conditional Residence
  • Renewals and extensions

Citizenship and Naturalization

Citizenship Through Self Petition

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Be a permanent resident (“green card” holder) for at least five years, and live in the same state at the time you are applying for citizenship for 3 months.
  • Be physically present in the US for at least 30 months out of the five (5) years at the time of application.
  • Read, write and speak English and have knowledge of United history and government.
  • Be a person of good moral character, and not have any disqualifying criminal convictions.

Citizenship through Marriage to U.S. Citizen

  • Be a permanent resident “green card” holder for at least 3 years. (For a military spouse, it’s 1 year).
  • Reside with the same spouse during those 3 years.
  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Reside in the same state in which the immigration office is located for at least 3 months prior.
  • Be a current US resident for at least 3 years prior and physically present for at least 18 months of those 3 years.
  • Read, write and speak English and have knowledge of United history and government. Be a person of good moral character, and not have any disqualifying criminal convictions.

Citizenship Through Parents

  • A child born in the United States and its territories is a US citizen at birth, and no applications need to be filed.
  • A child born in a foreign country to parents who are U.S. citizens may also be a U.S. Citizen.
  • A child could also be a U.S. Citizen if the parents are naturalized as U.S. citizens before age 18.

Deportation Proceedings and Bond Hearings

Typical Defenses Available in Deportation Proceedings

  • Waivers of exclusion/deportation- Criminal Convictions
  • Cancellation of Removal for permanent residents.
  • Cancellation of Removal for non-permanent residents.
  • Suspension of deportation.
  • Asylum, Withholding of Removal
  • Adjustment to Permanent Resident Status.
  • Prosecutorial Discretion.
  • Motions for Administrative Closure based on eligibility for Unlawful Presence waiver (I-601A).
  • U Visas for individuals who were helpful to police/prosecutor with a criminal investigation.
  • Victim of Domestic Violence (VAWA) cancellation of removal.
  • If you are in deportation proceedings because of a criminal conviction, you may be eligible to file a motion to vacate criminal conviction.
  • Citizenship (some foreign-born individuals may unknowingly be U.S. citizens).
  • Voluntary Departure

Appeals To USCIS, Board of Immigration Appeals, and Federal Courts

Almost all denials of applications and petitions could be appealed to USCIS’ Administrative Appeals Office, or the Board of Immigration Appeals, and as a last resort, to the United States Courts of Appeals.

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