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Immigration Resources

Understanding the Adjustment of Status Process for Parents of U.S. Citizens

Posted by Kripa Upadhyay | Apr 15, 2021

If your child is registered as a citizen and you are looking to obtain your own green card or visa while living with them in the United States, immigration laws state that you must file for an Adjustment of Status (AOS). By filing for AOS, you may stay in the country while your green card application is processed. It is important to note that once you file for AOS, you are also eligible to receive an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) also known as a “Work Permit” and a Travel Document which you are able to use while you wait for a decision on the AOS.

However, there are several important aspects of obtaining a green card and the Adjustment of Status that all applicants, especially parents of U.S. citizens, should be aware of before moving forward with the process and related paperwork, which we discuss below.

Requirements for Adjustment of Status

The process for AOS is not available for all parents who are seeking a legal ability to live and work in the United States for an extended period of time. In order to be eligible to adjust status, an individual must

  • Have been inspected and admitted: This means that the applicant for AOS must be able to prove that she/he entered the US lawfully at a designated border or airport and was inspected by an Immigration officer and admitted into the United States
  • NOT have any crimes that would make the person inadmissible to the United States
  • The applicant must be physically present within the United States at the time of application

Certain circumstances may trigger the attention of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), such as obtaining a temporary visa that does not allow for dual intent. This can be viewed as an indication that you came to the country with a plan for immigration and misrepresented your intentions for remaining in the United States, leading to the rejection of your application.

While this can seem overwhelming to process for anyone who is unfamiliar with immigration law, trusting an experienced attorney with your case and adjustment of status can provide peace of mind and knowledge that your immigration case will be handled with care.

Obtaining a Green Card through Adjustment of Status

In order to file for AOS through a child who is a US Citizen, the applicant must:

  • Form I-130 (Must be filed by the US Citizen child)
  • Form I-485: Petition to Adjust Status along with applications for Work Permit and Travel Document
  • I-864: US Citizen child or another member of the family who is your financial sponsor
  • Evidence to show the biological relationship between parent and child
  • Please note this is NOT a complete list. Each case is different so supporting evidence will need to be provided based on the facts of your case.
  • Once the application is filed and received at USCIS you will receive:
  • Separate receipt notices for each forms submitted to USCIS
  • You will receive an appointment date and time of your biometrics appointment.
  • You may be called in for an in-person interview at the USCIS office closes to your residence.

You can check your status online after the necessary forms have been submitted. Once your case has been reviewed by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, they will contact you to formally announce their decision on whether your application was granted or if more follow-up information is required.

Adjustment of Status Timeline

Individuals hoping to apply for and obtain a green card through AOS should be aware that they may have to wait anywhere from ten months to three years to find out the results of their application. There is no set timeline for the AOS process since many unique case circumstances can complicate the application and admission process.

Those who are parents of U.S. citizens and are hoping to avoid delays in their application for AOS should ensure that their paperwork is filled out correctly and that it adheres to the guidelines for U.S. immigration. A qualified lawyer can help avoid any potential delays by reviewing your application before it's submitted to ensure all the necessary information is included.

Contact an Experienced Seattle Immigration Attorney

If you are the parent of a child who is living in the United States as a citizen and you are looking to apply for your green card through Adjustment of Status, you need to retain the services of a lawyer that you can trust to walk you through the entire process and ensure that none of the necessary requirements are missed.

At Orbit Law, our dedicated attorneys provide you with one-on-one attention for your immigration case and can help you file important forms related to your green card. Get started working with one of our knowledgeable legal professionals today by calling Orbit Law at (206) 623-3352 or reaching out to us online to schedule your case consultation.

About the Author

Kripa Upadhyay

Kripa Upadhyay Founder/Attorney [email protected] EDUCATION Seattle University School of Law, Seattle, WA, Juris Doctor (JD)  May 2007 ADMISSIONS Washington State Bar Association: Admitted May 2008 U.S District Court for the Eastern District of Washington: Admitted 2009 U.S...