Green Cards

How Long Does It Take for USCIS and the NVC To Process applications?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated January 17, 2023

If you would like to track your immigration application as it moves along the immigration process or if you are wondering how to check if your application's processing is outside the expected processing timeframes, we've got you covered! This article will explore how to check your application case status - both with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the National Visa Center (NVC) - and what to do if your application processing falls outside the normal processing time.

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Everything You Need To Know About USCIS Form I-526

Written by Paige Hooper
Written January 11, 2023

Filing Form I-526 is the first step foreign investors must take to get an EB-5 investor visa. The EB-5 visa is a unique type of employment-based visa. To qualify for an EB-5, you must first invest the required capital in a qualifying EB-5 project. You also have to submit proof of your eligibility for an EB-5 visa as part of the Form I-526 filing process. This article explains what the EB-5 program is, who is eligible to file Form I-526, and how the application process works.

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January 2023 Visa Bulletin (Archive)

Written by Immigration Help News Team
Updated January 8, 2023

The application processing time for priority worker green cards for foreign nationals from mainland China and India has increased by five months and nine days. Application cut-off dates in all other family-based and employment-based green card categories did not change between the December and January Visa Bulletin. You can find current cut-off dates and backlog information in the charts below.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Approved” Mean for My EB-5 Application?

Written by Peter Fargo
Written December 29, 2022

If your USCIS case status says “Case Was Approved,” congratulations! This means USCIS has reviewed your application, determined your eligibility, and decided to grant your EB-5 green card. You’ll often see several statuses prior to approval as your case progresses, and it can take a long time for USCIS to process and approve your application. It takes an average of six months for USCIS to process and approve EB-5 cases. This article explains the case approval process with USCIS and what happens after your case is approved.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Transferred” Mean for My Parent Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written December 29, 2022

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status “Case Was Transferred And A New Office Has Jurisdiction” means that USCIS moved your case to a different service center or field office. The new office will continue processing your case from there. USCIS may choose to transfer your parent green card case for several reasons, including staffing shortages or processing delays. Cases may also get transferred if you move to a new jurisdiction. If USCIS transfers your case, it will notify you via your online account and mail you a transfer notice. You don’t need to do anything, but take note that any future additional documentation for your case and any questions you have about your case will need to be directed to the new office.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Approved” Mean for My Employment Green Card?

Written by Peter Fargo
Written December 26, 2022

If your USCIS case status says “Case Was Approved,” congratulations! This means USCIS has reviewed your application, determined your eligibility, and decided to grant your employment-based green card. You’ll often see several statuses prior to approval as your case progresses, and it can take a long time for USCIS to process and approve your application. It takes an average of about 15 months for USCIS to process and approve employment-based Form I-140 applications. However, current USCIS processing times vary from 10 to 22 months depending on which type of employment green card you’ve applied for. This article explains the case approval process with USCIS and what happens after your case is approved.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Transferred” Mean for My Employment-Based Green Card Application?

Written by Peter Fargo
Written December 26, 2022

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status “Case Was Transferred And A New Office Has Jurisdiction” means that USCIS moved your case to a different service center or field office. The new office will continue processing your case from there. USCIS may choose to transfer your employment green card case for several reasons, including staffing shortages or processing delays. Cases may also be transferred if you, the applicant, move and are now in a new jurisdiction. If USCIS transfers your case, it will notify you via your online account and mail you a transfer notice. You don’t need to do anything, but take note that any future additional documentation for your case and any questions you have about your case will need to be directed to the new office.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Transferred” Mean for My EB-5 Green Card Application?

Written by Peter Fargo
Written December 26, 2022

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status “Case Was Transferred And A New Office Has Jurisdiction” means that USCIS moved your case to a different service center or field office. The new office will continue processing your case from there. USCIS may choose to transfer your EB-5 green card case for several reasons, including staffing shortages or processing delays. Cases may also be transferred if you, the applicant, move and are now in a new jurisdiction. If USCIS transfers your case, it will notify you via your online account and mail you a transfer notice. You don’t need to do anything, but take note that any future additional documentation for your case and any questions you have about your case will need to be directed to the new office.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Transferred” Mean for My Sibling Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written December 22, 2022

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status “Case Was Transferred And A New Office Has Jurisdiction” means that USCIS moved your case to a different service center or field office. The new office will continue processing your case from there. USCIS may choose to transfer your sibling green card case for several reasons, including staffing shortages or processing delays. Cases may also get transferred if you move and are now in a new jurisdiction. If USCIS transfers your case, it’ll notify you via your online account and mail you a transfer notice. You don’t need to do anything, but take note that any future additional documentation for your case and any questions you have about your case will need to be directed to the new office.

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How To Get a U.S. Marriage Green Card: A Step-by-Step Guide

Written by Immigration Help Team
Updated December 22, 2022

A marriage green card is a type of immigrant visa that allows you to live and work in the United States. It is available to the spouses of U.S. citizens or green card holders. Applying for a marriage green card takes 9–38 months and costs $1,400–$1,960. You can apply for a marriage green card from inside the U.S. or from abroad. This guide explains what a marriage green card is and how to get one.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Request for Additional Evidence Was Sent” Mean for My EB-5 Applicatio

Written by ImmigrationHelp Team
Written December 14, 2022

If you log in to your USCIS account online and see the case status “Request for Additional Evidence Was Sent,” it means that USCIS needs more information from you to process your case and ensure you’re eligible for an EB-5 green card. USCIS will mail a Form I-797E: Notice of Action that outlines exactly what additional evidence is needed and why. The notice will also include a deadline for submitting the requested information. It’s important to submit the requested information before the deadline to ensure USCIS continues processing your application without too much delay.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Transferred” Mean for My Child Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written December 13, 2022

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status “Case Was Transferred And A New Office Has Jurisdiction” means that USCIS moved your case to a different service center or field office. The new office will continue processing your case from there. USCIS may choose to transfer your child green card case for several reasons, including staffing shortages or processing delays. Cases may also get transferred if you move to a new jurisdiction. If USCIS transfers your case, it’ll notify you via your online account and mail you a transfer notice. You don’t need to do anything, but take note that any future additional documentation for your case and any questions you have about your case will need to be directed to the new office.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Transferred” Mean for My Marriage Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written December 13, 2022

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status “Case Was Transferred And A New Office Has Jurisdiction” means that USCIS moved your case to a different service center or field office. The new office will continue processing your case from there. USCIS may choose to transfer your marriage green card case for several reasons, including staffing shortages or processing delays. Cases may also get transferred if you move and are now in a new jurisdiction. If USCIS transfers your case, it’ll notify you via your online account and mail you a transfer notice. You don’t need to do anything, but take note that any future additional documentation for your case and any questions you have about your case will need to be directed to the new office.

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How To Find Help With Your Immigration Application When You Need Some Extra Help

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated December 13, 2022

ImmigrationHelp.org is a nonprofit that helps low-income Dreamers prepare their Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Advance Parole application paperwork for free. With DACA, you can access immigration benefits like work authorization and protection from deportation. ImmigrationHelp.org is not a law firm, so we cannot provide legal representation for our users. As a nonprofit, our goal is to empower you to file your DACA and Advance Parole paperwork on your own. In this article, we explain other resources you can turn to when you need a bit more help than we can provide.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Case Was Approved” Mean for My Child Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written December 10, 2022

If your USCIS case status says “Case Was Approved,” congratulations! This means USCIS has reviewed your application, determined your eligibility, and decided to grant your child green card. You’ll often see several statuses prior to approval as your case progresses, and it can take a long time for USCIS to process and approve your application. It takes an average of 10 to 38 months for USCIS to process and approve child green card applications. This article explains the case approval process with USCIS and what happens after your case is approved.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Case Was Approved” Mean for My Sibling Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written December 10, 2022

If your USCIS case status says “Case Was Approved,” congratulations! This means USCIS has reviewed your application, determined your eligibility, and decided to grant your sibling’s green card. You’ll often see several statuses prior to approval as your case progresses, and it can take a long time for USCIS to process and approve your application. It takes an average of 10 years for USCIS to process and approve sibling green card applications. However, if your sibling is from Mexico, India, or the Philippines, it can take up to 25 years. This article explains the case approval process with USCIS and what happens after your case is approved.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Was Received” Mean for My Employment Green Card?

Written by Immigration Help Team
Written December 4, 2022

When you see the case status “Case Was Received” from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), it means USCIS is acknowledging that it received your immigration application packet. This is just the start of USCIS processing your application. It hasn’t yet reviewed your application materials or determined your eligibility. Once you see this status, you’ll want to keep an eye on future status changes and respond to anything that requires your attention, such as a request for evidence. This article explains the “Case Received” USCIS status and what to do when your application is in this status.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Case Was Approved” Mean for My Marriage Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written December 4, 2022

If your USCIS case status says “Case Was Approved,” congratulations! This means USCIS has reviewed your application, determined your eligibility, and decided to grant your marriage green card application. You’ll often see several statuses prior to approval as your case progresses, and it can take a long time for USCIS to process and approve your application. It can take anywhere from 10–38 months for USCIS to process and approve marriage green card applications. This article explains the case approval process with USCIS and what happens after your case is approved.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Was Received” Mean for My EB-5 Application?

Written by ImmigrationHelp Team
Written December 4, 2022

When you see the case status “Case Was Received” from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), it means USCIS is acknowledging that it received your immigration application packet. This is just the start of USCIS processing your application. It hasn’t yet reviewed your application materials or determined your eligibility. Once you see this status, you’ll want to keep an eye on future status changes and respond to anything that requires your attention, such as a request for evidence. This article explains the “Case Received” USCIS status and what to do when your application is in this status.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Request for Additional Evidence” Mean for My Marriage Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written November 22, 2022

If you log in to your USCIS account online and see the case status “Request for Additional Evidence Was Sent,” it means that USCIS needs more information from you to process your case and ensure you’re eligible for a marriage green card. USCIS will mail a Form I-797E: Notice of Action that outlines exactly what additional evidence is needed and why. The notice will also include a deadline for submitting the requested information. It’s important to submit the requested information before the deadline to ensure USCIS continues processing your application without too much delay.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Case Was Denied” Mean for My Marriage Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written November 22, 2022

If you see “Case Was Denied” as your USCIS case status online, it means that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has received and reviewed your marriage green card application and decided not to grant your spouse a green card. If USCIS denies your marriage green card application case, it’ll send you a denial notice explaining why. It can be disheartening to go through months of processing for a green card only to have your case denied. If this happens, you may want to get legal advice about the next steps. If you decide to appeal your case, you’ll want to have a good immigration attorney at your side.

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Can a DACA Recipient Get a Green Card Through Marriage?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 22, 2022

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program doesn’t yet provide a pathway to lawful permanent residence. But if you’re a DACA recipient and you fall in love with and marry a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you may be able to get a marriage green card.  As a green card holder, you’ll have protection from deportation and long-term employment authorization, meaning you’ll never have to renew your work permit. Getting an immigrant visa is also the first step towards naturalization - the process of gaining U.S. citizenship. But to change your immigration status from DACA recipient to green card holder, you must satisfy certain eligibility requirements.  Your green card eligibility will depend largely on how you entered the United States and if you’re married to a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident. This article explains the different ways that DACA recipients can qualify for marriage green cards and how long the process takes.

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What are the benefits of getting a green card?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 22, 2022

More than a million people in the United States live in lawful permanent resident status. People become permanent residents in different ways,- through marriage, close family members, employment, and others. There are several benefits of holding a green card. This article explains green card benefits, the responsibilities of having a green card, and some limitations green card holders face.

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What Is a Green Card Joint Sponsor?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 22, 2022

As part of your application for a green card, you'll need to prove to the U.S. government that you have access to enough resources to support yourself financially. If your application is for a marriage green card, your spouse must submit an Affidavit of Support, to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). USCIS has set financial thresholds that you must meet to become a lawful permanent resident. To help you meet the financial requirements, you can have a joint sponsor for your green card application. This article explains who a joint sponsor is, how to know if you'll need one, the requirements of joint sponsorship, and the process of becoming a green card joint sponsor.

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Can You Apply for Advance Parole With a Criminal Record?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 22, 2022

Getting status and other U.S. immigration benefits may be out of reach for people with criminal records. If you have ever committed a felony, for example, you can't get immigration benefits. Advance Parole is a travel permit available to special immigrants and those adjusting status to green cards. For example, if you have Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status, you can travel abroad and return with Advance Parole. This article explains how you can qualify for Advance Parole and whether or not a criminal record can keep you from getting Advance Parole.

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Step-by-Step Guide To Filing a Family Green Card Application From Abroad (by Consular Processing)

Written by Immigration Help Team
Written November 21, 2022

If you are a lawful permanent resident or U.S. citizen and you want to petition for a family member to get a green card, you’ll apply through consular processing. This process means you’ll interact with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the National Visa Center (NVC). This process typically takes 7–15 months and costs $1,400. This is a 14-step guide to getting a family green card through consular processing.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Was Received” Mean for My Parent Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written November 21, 2022

When you see the case status “Case Was Received” from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), it means USCIS is acknowledging that it received your parent green card application packet. This is just the start of USCIS processing your application. It hasn’t yet reviewed your application materials or determined your parent’s eligibility. Once you see this status, you’ll want to keep an eye on future status changes and respond to anything that requires your attention, such as a request for evidence. This article explains the “Case Received” USCIS status and what to do when your application is in this status.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Was Received” Mean for My Child Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written November 21, 2022

When you see the case status “Case Was Received” from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), it means USCIS is acknowledging that it received your immigration application packet. This is just the start of USCIS processing your application. It hasn’t yet reviewed your application materials or determined your eligibility. Once you see this status, you’ll want to keep an eye on future status changes and respond to anything that requires your attention, such as a request for evidence. This article explains the “Case Received” USCIS status and what to do when your application is in this status.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Was Received” Mean for My Marriage Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written November 21, 2022

When you see the case status “Case Was Received” from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), it means USCIS is acknowledging that it received your immigration application packet. This is just the start of USCIS processing your application. It hasn’t yet reviewed your application materials or determined your eligibility. Once you see this status, you’ll want to keep an eye on future status changes and respond to anything that requires your attention, such as a request for evidence. This article explains the “Case Received” USCIS status and what to do when your application is in this status.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Was Denied” Mean for My Employment-Based Green Card Application?

Written by Immigration Help Team
Written November 15, 2022

If you see “Case Was Denied” as your USCIS case status online, it means that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has received and reviewed your employment-based green card case and decided not to grant you a green card. If USCIS denies your employment-based green card, it will send you a denial notice explaining why. It can be disheartening to go through months of processing for an employment-based green card only to have your case denied. If this happens, you may want to get legal advice about the next steps. If you decide to appeal your case, you’ll want to have a good immigration attorney at your side.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Request for Additional Evidence” Mean for My Parent Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written November 15, 2022

If you log in to your USCIS account online and see the case status “Request for Additional Evidence Was Sent,” it means that USCIS needs more information from you to process your case and ensure you’re eligible for a green card. USCIS will mail a Form I-797E: Notice of Action that outlines exactly what additional evidence is needed and why. The notice will also include a deadline for submitting the requested information. It’s important to submit the requested information before the deadline to ensure USCIS continues processing your application without too much delay.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Was Denied” Mean for My EB-5 Application?

Written by Immigration Help Team
Written November 15, 2022

If you see “Case Was Denied” as your USCIS case status online, it means that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has received and reviewed your EB-5 application and decided not to grant you a green card. If USCIS denies your EB-5 case, it will send you a denial notice explaining why. It can be disheartening to go through months of processing for an EB-5 green card only to have your case denied. If this happens, you may want to get legal advice about the next steps. If you decide to appeal your case, you’ll want to have a good immigration attorney at your side.

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Form I-407 and Voluntary Green Card Abandonment

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 15, 2022

Many people lose their lawful permanent resident status every year. Some choose to give up their green card by voluntarily abandoning it. Others lose their green card involuntarily. This article explains what it means to abandon your green card voluntarily or involuntarily and describes the process to follow when you want to give up your green card and the consequences of giving it up.

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What Is an Immigrant Visa Number and How Can I Get One?

Written by Immigration Help Team
Written November 15, 2022

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) or the National Visa Center (NVC) issues immigrant visa numbers to green card applicants after the petitioner successfully submits Form I-130 or Form I-140 and once there is a visa available. There are caps on the number of people who can get an immigrant visa each year. So even if you have met all of the eligibility requirements to get a permanent visa, become a lawful permanent resident, and get your green card, you may still have to wait a long time before you get your immigrant visa number and can proceed with the immigrant visa process to get your green card. This article explains immigrant visa numbers and how they differ from your Alien Registration Number (A-Number) and your USCIS case number.

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Step-by-Step Guide To Filing a Family Green Card Application Concurrently

Written by Immigration Help Team
Written November 14, 2022

Filing for a family green card concurrently means you file Form I-130 and Form I-485 at the same time. These two forms will be accompanied by other required (and optional) forms plus required filing fees to form your green card application or petition. Most concurrent family green card applications take 7-15 months and cost $1,760.

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How To File a Family Green Card Application Non-Concurrently: A Step-by-Step Guide

Written by Immigration Help Team
Written November 14, 2022

When you file for a family green card non-concurrently, an eligible family member petitions for you with Form I-130 and you file Form I-485 at a different time. Because you are submitting the forms at different times, this process will take longer than filing concurrently — or submitting your Form I-130 and I-485 at the same time. This article outlines the 13 steps of filing for a family green card non-concurrently.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Request for Additional Evidence” Mean for My Sibling Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written November 8, 2022

If you log in to your USCIS account online and see the case status “Request for Additional Evidence Was Sent,” it means that USCIS needs more information from you to process your sibling green card case and ensure you’re eligible. USCIS will mail a Form I-797E: Notice of Action that outlines exactly what additional evidence is needed and why. The notice will also include a deadline for submitting the requested information. It’s important to submit the requested information before the deadline to ensure USCIS continues processing your application without too much delay.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Request for Additional Evidence” Mean for My Child Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written November 8, 2022

If you log in to your USCIS account online and see the case status “Request for Additional Evidence Was Sent,” it means that USCIS needs more information from you to process your child’s green card case and ensure your child is eligible for a green card. USCIS will mail a Form I-797E: Notice of Action that outlines exactly what additional evidence is needed and why. The notice will also include a deadline for submitting the requested information. It’s important to submit the requested information before the deadline to ensure USCIS continues processing your application without too much delay.

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Green Card vs. Visa: How Are They Different?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

A common misconception is that a green card and a visa are the same thing. While the two are similar, there are differences between green cards and visas. To avoid confusion, you should first understand what a visa is and what a green card is. This article explains both, then highlights the differences between green cards and visas.

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How To Use the State Department’s Reciprocity Schedule

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

Sometimes the civil documents you have to submit to support your green card application are not issued by the authorities in your home country. To help address this, the U.S. Department of State publishes a “reciprocity schedule” that you can use to determine which substitute documents the U.S. government will accept for your application. This article explains how to use the reciprocity schedule.

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What is the IR-2 immigrant visa for children of U.S. citizens?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

There are visas available for foreign-born children of U.S. citizens to immigrate to the United States. The IR-2 visa is an immigrant visa available only to unmarried children of U.S. citizens. This guide explains the IR-2 visa in detail. It defines who can apply for the visa, the IR-2 visa application process, the costs involved, as well as how long it takes to process IR-2 visa applications.

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What To Do if You Are Denied Entry Into the United States With Advance Parole

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

For green card applicants based in the United States and people with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) status, Advance Parole is a welcome provision. With this travel document, you can leave the United States while in DACA status or while U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) processes your green card application. Advance Parole provides a chance to visit ailing family, study abroad, attend forums and conferences abroad, and catch up with friends. But sometimes the U.S. government does not allow people with valid Advance Parole documents to reenter the United States. This article explains some reasons why the U.S. government would refuse to let you back into the country even with Advance Parole and some things you can do if you find yourself in this situation as an adjustment of status applicant or a DACA recipient.

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What Is Immigration Form I-360: Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

Form I-360 is a very versatile immigration form. Several classes of immigrants may file this form with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as part of their green card application process. This article introduces Form I-360, explains its purpose and who can file it, how to file it, and special considerations for VAWA petitioners to keep in mind.

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What Does USCIS Case Status “Case Rejected” Mean for My Employment-Based Green Card?

Written by Immigration Help Team
Written October 31, 2022

The USCIS case status “Case Rejected” means that you didn’t file your immigration paperwork correctly, so USCIS did not review your case. If USCIS rejects your case, it will return your original filing fee. To have your case reviewed, you’ll need to fix the issue that caused the rejection. Common issues that lead to rejection include filing the incorrect form version, paying an incorrect fee amount, and not signing a form. If you see the “Case Rejected” status on your USCIS account, you’ll need to refile your application and pay your filing fee to move forward with your immigration application. If you aren’t sure how to correct the mistake after reading this article, you may want to contact an attorney for help with your case.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Rejected” Mean for My Parent Green Card Application?

Written by Attorney Curtis Lee
Written October 26, 2022

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case status “Case Rejected” means that you didn’t file your immigration paperwork correctly so USCIS didn’t review your case. If USCIS rejects your case, it will also return your original filing fee. To have your case reviewed, you’ll need to fix the issue that caused the rejection. Common issues that lead to rejection include filing the incorrect form version, paying an incorrect fee amount, and not signing a form. If you see the “Case Rejected” status on your USCIS account, you’ll need to refile your case and pay your filing fee to move forward with your immigration application. If you aren’t sure how to correct the mistake after reading this article, you may want to contact an attorney for help with your case.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Rejected” Mean for My Marriage Green Card Application?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written October 24, 2022

The USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services) case status “Case Rejected” means that you didn’t file your immigration paperwork correctly, so USCIS did not review your case. If USCIS rejects your case, it will return your original filing fee. To have your case reviewed, you’ll need to fix the issue that was causing the rejection. Common issues that lead to rejection include filing the incorrect form version, paying an incorrect fee amount, and not signing a form. If you see the “Case Rejected” status on your USCIS account, you’ll need to refile your application and pay your filing fee to move forward with your marriage green card case. If you aren’t sure how to correct the mistake after reading this article, you may want to contact an attorney for help with your case.

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How To Get a Marriage Green Card as a Military Spouse

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 24, 2022

It’s common for active-duty military personnel to fall in love while stationed abroad. If the couple meets the requirements, the foreign spouse can get a marriage green card in three simple steps. They will apply for a green card either from the United States or abroad, attend a green card interview, and wait for a response from the U.S. government. This article explains the requirements for the military spouse green card and the application process to follow depending on where you live.

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How To Plan a Courthouse Wedding in the United States

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 19, 2022

Traditional wedding ceremonies can be expensive and stressful to plan. A welcome alternative for some couples is the courthouse wedding. A courthouse wedding is sometimes also called a civil wedding, a civil union, or a civil ceremony. Courthouse weddings in the United States are recognized as valid marriages for marriage green card applications. This article explains how to plan a courthouse wedding in six simple steps.

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Weekly News Roundup: October 14, 2022 (Archive)

Written by Immigration Help News Team
Written October 13, 2022

The fourth quarter brings with it an array of immigration news. A few things in this week's bulletin: changes in wait times for Mexican nationals applying for family-sponsored green cards, a legal challenge to visa retrogression laws, a timeline on what to expect from DACA as litigation continues, and why Anna “Delvey” Sorokin’s house arrest matters to immigration advocates.

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What Is a Green Card Re-Entry Permit?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 10, 2022

Before you take a long trip abroad as a green card holder, you need to do some things to ensure you can return to the United States without trouble. To keep your immigration status, you'll need to make it clear to the U.S. government that you are not abandoning your status as a permanent U.S. resident. One way to do this is to apply for a re-entry permit before your long trip outside of the United States. This article is a one-stop guide to everything you should know about re-entry permits for green card holders. You'll learn what a re-entry permit is, who needs it, how to get it, and other travel considerations.

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Immigration Weekly News Roundup: September 30, 2022

Written by Immigration Help News Team
Updated October 9, 2022

The ever-changing immigration landscape can be difficult to navigate. As we enter the final months of 2022, there’s some good news. The Department of Homeland Security has issued a final rule that will make it easier for people with limited income to get legal permanent residency (green card). The department has also extended Temporary Protected Status for people from Myanmar. Finally, the U.S. will resume visa processing for Cubans who want to visit or migrate legally. Let’s take a closer look at recent announcements.

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How To Change Status From H-1B to Marriage Green Card

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 9, 2022

The H-1B visa is a dual intent visa. Dual intent means that although The H-1B visa is a dual intent visa. Dual intent means that although it's a temporary work visa, U.S. immigration officials won't penalize you for [changing your status](https://www.immigrationhelp.org/learning-center/the-complete-guide-to-adjustment-of-status-process/) to a green card while you're in the United States in H-1B status. This is good news for you as the spouse of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident - you can apply for a green card through marriage and be on the pathway to U.S. citizenship. With the green card, you can work in the United States permanently, even after your sixth year of H-1B status. This article explains the process of applying for a marriage green card depending on your spouse's U.S. immigration status.it's a temporary work visa, U.S. immigration officials won't penalize you for [changing your status](https://www.immigrationhelp.org/learning-center/the-complete-guide-to-adjustment-of-status-process/) to a green card while you're in the United States in H-1B status. This is good news for you as the spouse of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident - you can apply for a green card through marriage and be on the pathway to U.S. citizenship. With the green card, you can work in the United States permanently, even after your sixth year of H-1B status. This article explains the process of applying for a marriage green card depending on your spouse's U.S. immigration status.

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How To Apply for a USCIS Fee Waiver or Reduction

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 9, 2022

U.S. immigration application filing fees can be quite expensive, but if you can't afford them you have options. You may qualify for a fee waiver if your household income is at or below 150% of the federal poverty level (FPL) for your state and you are filing a qualifying form. If your household income is between 150% and 200% of the FPL for your state and you are filing a qualifying form, you may be eligible for a fee reduction. This article explains the difference between a fee reduction and a fee waiver, who qualifies, and how to apply for each.

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What Is an Alien Registration Number (A-Number), and Where Can I Find It?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 2, 2022

An A-Number (Alien Registration Number) is a 7-9 digit number that USCIS uses to identify immigrants who apply to live in the United States permanently, as well as certain student immigrants. If you are such an immigrant and are applying for additional immigration benefits, you will probably need your A-Number to submit the required forms and to track your application. This article explains how A-Numbers work, and where you can find yours when you need it.

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What Is USCIS Form I-90?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated September 21, 2022

Form I-90 is the official Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card. The form has multiple uses. You file it with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to renew your expired or soon-expiring green card. You can also use it to get a replacement for your lost, stolen, or damaged green card. This article has all the information you need to know about Form I-90, such as who needs to file, how and where to file, and what happens after filing.

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What To Expect at Your Green Card Interview: The Process, the Questions, and What To Bring With You

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated September 21, 2022

Your green card interview will take place at a USCIS field office or U.S. consulate or embassy closest to you, depending on whether you applied from inside or outside the U.S. The interviewing officer will ask you questions about what you put on your application and whether anything has changed between the time you filed and your interview date. This article explains what you need to know about the interview process and how to prepare for it.

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What Happens to Your Immigration Status When You Get Divorced?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated September 1, 2022

Getting divorced may affect your immigration status, depending on what type of marriage green card you have. Divorce won’t affect the status of people who have permanent green cards, but it can delay their application for naturalization. If you have a conditional green card and you get divorced, it may be more difficult to get a permanent green card. This article discusses how divorce can affect immigration status and how people with conditional green cards can still apply to become permanent U.S. residents, even after their marriage ends.

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Can I File Form I-485 While in Removal Proceedings?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated August 15, 2022

If you are eligible, you can file Form I-485, Adjustment of Status Application, even if you are in removal proceedings and the U.S. government is trying to deport you. This process might seem unusual, but in some situations, you may be eligible to adjust your immigration status with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Read on to learn when, why, and how you might file Form I-485 during a removal proceeding.

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How Do I Replace a Lost Green Card?

Written by ImmigrationHelp Team
Updated August 7, 2022

Replacing a lost green card is straightforward, but it takes time. You’ll need to fill out Form I-90, pay a filing fee, and attend a biometrics appointment before you can replace your lost green card. Replacing a green card can take more than a year, so you should get the process started quickly.

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What Is Special Immigrant Visa Status?

Written by Amelia Neimi
Updated August 7, 2022

Certain Afghans or Iraqis who helped the United States government are eligible to apply for special immigrant visa status. Although this process is long and complicated, if granted, it could lead to lawful permanent resident status in the United States. This article will explain how special immigrant status works, why it exists, and how to apply for it if you’re eligible.

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What Is the PERM Labor Certification Process for Foreign Workers?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated June 22, 2022

PERM labor certification is one of the most important processes involved in getting an employment-based green card. Your employer will be responsible for getting this done, but it is very helpful that you know what the process involves and why it must be completed before you can get a green card. This article explains everything you need to know about the PERM labor certification process.

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What Is the Form I-94 Travel Record?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 30, 2022

Nearly every foreign traveler to the United States has an I-94 travel record (also known as “Form I-94” or “I-94 Form”). U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials issue Form I-94 to foreign travelers entering the United States. CBP officials use Form I-94 to track arrivals and departures of non-citizens visiting the United States. This article explains Form i-94 in-depth, including how it is used, how to access yours, and answers to some frequently asked questions.‍

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What Supporting Documents Do You Need to Get a U.S. Green Card for Your Child?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 30, 2022

If you are a U.S. citizen or a permanent resident, you can sponsor your child for a Green Card. You and your child  will need to submit certain documents to the U.S. Government when you apply. The application process and documents you will need are different when the child you are seeking a Green Card for is living *__inside__* of the United States (“[Adjustment of Status](https://webflow.com/filing-guides/family-green-card-concurrent)”) and when they are living *__outside__* of the United States (“[Consular Processing](https://webflow.com/filing-guides/family-green-card-consular)”). This guide will serve as a document checklist for both processes.

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Advance Parole: How To Travel Abroad While Waiting for Your Green Card

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 30, 2022

The green card application can take a while. How long you wait depends on your green card type and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) case processing backlogs. If you’re applying for a green card while in the United States, you typically cannot leave until the application process is over. If you leave, USCIS will discontinue your green card application. Getting an Advance Parole travel document allows you to leave the United States while waiting for your green card and return with permission from the U.S. government. In this article, you will learn what Advance Parole is, who qualifies for it and who doesn’t, and how to apply for Advance Parole step-by-step.

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What Is Direct Consular Filing (DCF)?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 30, 2022

When your green card application goes through consular processing, U.S. immigration officials at an embassy or consulate in your home country handle your application. Consular processing is the default application method for green card applicants filing from outside the United States. Direct Consular Filing (DCF) is a fast-track process for filing Form I-130, the foundation of every family-based green card application. This article is a deep dive into direct consular filing, discussing eligibility, the application process, and processing timeframes.

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What Is Form I-751, Petition To Remove Conditions on Residence?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 30, 2022

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services(USCIS) will give you a conditional green card if your marriage was less than two years old when you applied for permanent residence. Conditional green cards are not valid for as long as regular green cards. You will have to eventually ask U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to remove the conditions on your card so that you can have access to your permanent resident benefits on a long-term basis. This article explains Form I-751: Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, when to file it, how to file it, and what to expect after filing it with the U.S. government.

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What Is the Public Charge Rule?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 30, 2022

The Public Charge Rule is not a new U.S. immigration concept. From as early as 1882, U.S. Congress used the concept to deny visas to people who would become a “public charge” as immigrants. A public charge is anyone who would become dependent on the U.S. government after gaining immigrant status. In 2019, the Trump administration proposed a new Public Charge Rule, which began in 2020, and made it much tougher for immigrants to get permanent resident status. This article explains the history of the Public Charge Rule and what it means for you today.

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Is It Risky To Travel With Advance Parole?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 26, 2022

For Deferred Action and Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients and adjustment of status applicants, the U.S. government makes provision for a travel document called Advance Parole. Advance Parole allows immigrants based in the United States to travel abroad while in status or while waiting for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) to process their paperwork. If you have DACA or are applying for adjustment of status, your approved Advance Parole document will serve the same purpose as a U.S. visa, allowing re-entry to the United States upon returning. In this article, we explain Advance Parole, how to get it, and highlight some of the risks involved in traveling back to the United States on Advance Parole.

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Removal of Conditions on Marriage Green Cards

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 26, 2022

Years ago, the U.S. government instituted tighter measures to help prevent marriage fraud. Issuing conditional green cards (CR-1 visas) to newly-married couples was one of those measures. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) places conditions on your green card so they can re-assess whether your marriage is based on a bona fide relationship with your spouse. This article explains the removal of conditions process for marriage green cards and answers some frequently asked questions about the process.

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What Supporting Documents Do You Need for a U.S. Marriage Green Card?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated May 26, 2022

U.S. citizens and permanent residents can sponsor their spouse for a marriage green card. They and their spouse will need to submit certain documents to the U.S. government when they apply. The application process and documents you will need are different when the spouse seeking a green card is living inside of the United States (adjustment of status) and when they are living outside of the United States (consular processing). This guide will serve as a document checklist for both processes.

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What Is USCIS Form I-130: Petition for Alien Relative?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

Every year, many U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents sponsor green card applications for their close family members who are foreign nationals. The first step in most family-based green card application processes is filing the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Form I-130, officially called the Petition for Alien Relative. USCIS uses this form to verify a real and qualifying relationship between the green card sponsor and the green card applicant. In this article, we discuss the purpose of Form I-130, who can and can’t file Form I-130, the Form I-130 filing fees, and how long it takes USCIS to process the form.

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How to Get U.S. Citizenship if you have a Marriage Green Card

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

Many immigrants in the United States become citizens through the naturalization process. When you have your marriage green card, you can begin to think about naturalizing as a U.S. citizen. All lawful permanent residents can apply to become U.S. citizens. As an American citizen, you'll be eligible to vote in all state and national elections, apply for federal jobs, and live abroad however long you want. You will also never be deported from the United States as a U.S. citizen. This article explains the requirements for naturalizing as a citizen if you hold a marriage green card. It also explains the naturalization process itself.

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How To Get Advance Parole for Business Travel

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

For many people applying for immigration benefits, Advance Parole is necessary to travel abroad while they wait for the U.S. government to process their application. Other immigrants, like recipients of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), must also have an approved travel permit before leaving the United States if they'd like to return. Advance Parole makes it possible for immigrants with business ties abroad to leave the United States temporarily for work. In this article, we'll explain what business reasons you can get Advance Parole for as well as the step-by-step application process for getting the travel permit.

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Same-Sex Couples and Marriage Green Card Applications: Common Questions and Concerns About the Process

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

Same-sex couples must be treated equally under U.S. immigration law thanks to the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in the United States v. Windsor case, which struck down the Defense of Marriage Act. Even further, in 2015, the Supreme Court ruled in Obergefell v. Hodges that every state be required to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Following both Supreme Court rulings, gay marriage is legal in every U.S. state. Accordingly, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) will view same-sex marriages the same as opposite-sex marriages in deciding on family green card applications. USCIS will not factor in the spouses' genders or biological sexes in making visa application decisions. Same-sex spouses of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents are welcome to apply for marriage green cards, just like heterosexual couples. However, gay and lesbian couples do face some unique challenges in applying for a marriage green card. This article discusses these challenges and explains how to address them.

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How to get a marriage green card if you have a TN visa

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

As part of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), nationals of Canada or Mexico can work in the United States through the special TN visa classification. Many of these NAFTA professionals build connections and form relationships with Americans that could end up in marriage. The TN visa is not a "dual-intent" visa. This means changing status to a green card after marrying a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident can be tricky, but it is still possible. This article explains how to get a marriage green card if you have a TN visa and some considerations to bear in mind.

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How to Get a Green Card for Your Child (a Step-by-Step Guide)

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

As a lawful permanent resident (Green Card holder), or U.S. Citizen, you can petition for your foreign-born child who is seeking U.S. resident status to immigrate to the United States and receive their own Green Card. The marital status and age of your children tend to be the largest factors for this application process. We can help you p[repare your Child Green Card application paperwork](http://b.link/immigrationscreener) for free with our simple web app. Read on to learn more.

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How To Get a Copy of Your Marriage Certificate for Your Green Card Application

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

Every couple must provide evidence of a valid marriage involving a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident to complete their marriage green card application. This article explains how to get a copy of your marriage certificate for your application, which alternative documents you can submit, and what to do if there’s no legal record of your marriage.

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How To Get Military Records for Your Immigration Application

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

To join the U.S. military, you must either be a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident. In the past, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients could join the military through the Military Accessions Vital to National Interest (MAVNI) program, which ended in 2016. Most immigration applications you submit will ask that you provide any military service records if you were a member of the U.S. military or any foreign military service at any point in time. You will need to attach your military service records to your application forms when you're submitting them to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This article explains what military service information you need to provide for your application and how to get a copy of your records.

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How Long Does It Take To Get Marriage Green Card After You Apply?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

The U.S. government reserves certain green cards for the family members and immediate relatives of U.S. citizens and permanent residents. The marriage green card is one of these special green cards. The time frame to get a marriage green card is different for every case. Factors like where you file, when you file, and whether the person sponsoring their immigrant spouse for a marriage green cardis a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident (green card holder) all impact the green card process, and how long you can expect to wait from application to approval. On average, it takes 10-38 months to get a Marriage green card.

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How Can My Undocumented Immigrant Spouse Get a Green Card Through Marriage?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

If you are married to an undocumented immigrant, you are not alone. According to the Wall Street Journal, about 1.2 million undocumented immigrants are married to United States citizens. And that number doesn't even include undocumented immigrants married to U.S. permanent residents. Getting a marriage green card protects your spouse from deportation and, as immediate relatives, gives them a path to naturalization. But applying for a marriage green card can be a difficult process. And in most cases, it is even more challenging when your spouse is undocumented. This article will help you weigh the benefits and risks of applying for a marriage green card for your undocumented spouse.

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How to get a Change of Status from an F-1 Visa to a Green Card After Marriage

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

Some international students in the United States fall in love with, and marry, U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents that they meet during their studies. You may consider adjusting your status from the nonimmigrant F-1 visa to a green card for immigrant visa status after you get married. This article explains some things to consider when adjusting your status from an F-1 visa to a marriage green card and explains the application process depending on your spouse's immigration status.

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What Are the Photo Requirements for a Green Card Application?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written April 12, 2022

As part of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service’s (USCIS) requirements, you must submit photos of yourself with your green card application. This article explains the U.S. government’s green card photo requirements, how you can get a photo that meets these requirements, and the number of photos to include with your application.

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How To Obtain Police Reports and Court Records for a Green Card Application

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written November 28, 2021

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) conducts a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) conducts a background check on every immigration application. If you're applying for a green card and you have had any interactions with U.S. law enforcement, you'll have to disclose your criminal record to USCIS with your application. Generally, it's a good idea to consult with an immigration attorney if you have a criminal record before submitting your green card application. This article explains how to determine if you have a criminal record, where to get a copy of your criminal record, and the step-by-step process to request a copy from U.S. federal and state authorities.

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K1 Fiancé Visas vs. Marriage Green Cards: What Are the Differences?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written November 18, 2020

U.S. citizens who would like to marry their foreign fiance have two options to bring their partner to the United States: a marriage green card (spouse visa) through Consular Processing or a K-1 fiance visa. U.S. green card holders may not apply for a K-1 Visa. The main differences between a K-1 fiance visa and a marriage green card are their timing, location, and cost. The K-1 visa is often the quicker option for international couples. It takes 9-15 months and costs $800. With this visa, the couple can begin life in the U.S. immediately after their wedding. They will still have to apply for a marriage green card for the foreign spouse to stay in the U.S. The process of adjusting status from a K-1 fiance visa to a marriage green card takes 4-6 months and costs $1225. Consular marriage green cards (spouse visas) are issued after the couple is married outside of the U.S. The consular marriage green card application process takes 11-32 months and costs $1,210. The foreign spouse cannot move to the U.S. until the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) approves their green card application. Choosing between a K-1 fiance visa and a spouse visa can be tricky, but this article is here to help!

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What Is Consular Processing?

Written by Jonathan Petts

There are two major pathways to apply for a United States green card. One method, called adjustment of status, applies when you’re already in the United States. The other method is consular processing, which refers to the process of applying for lawful permanent resident status while located in your home country. The consular process begins with filing a petition with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which then hands it over to the National Visa Center (NVC). The NVC completes the green card application process and issues a visa allowing you to travel to the United States and get your green card.

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How To Get a Green Card Using TPS Adjustment of Status

Written by Jonathan Petts

While temporary protected status (TPS) allows certain immigrants to live and work in the U.S., this status is not permanent. One of the easiest ways to remain in the U.S. is by using the TPS adjustment of status process to get a green card. Once you have your green card, you’ll no longer need to fear deportation if your TPS status changes or expires because you’ll be a permanent U.S. resident. This article explains the requirements for successfully changing from temporary protected status to permanent U.S. residency.

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Adjustment of Status: How To Apply for a Green Card While in the U.S.

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated August 22, 2022

You can apply for lawful permanent resident (LPR) status from your home country or the United States. "Adjustment of status" (AOS) is the process that you use to apply for a green card while you're present in the U.S. When you adjust your status, you don't need to go to your home country to complete the permanent residence application process. This article explains everything you need to know about adjusting status to a green card, including eligibility and the step-by-step application process. The article also answers some frequently asked questions about adjustment of status.

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Forms DS-260 and DS-261 and the Marriage Green Card Consular Process

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 26, 2022

You can apply for a green card from the United States or from abroad. The process of applying from outside the United States, through a local U.S. embassy or consulate, is called consular processing. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) handles the initial stages of consular processing green card applications. Then, the U.S. Department of State's National Visa Center (NVC) handles the final stages of the application processing. In this article, we explain the function of the National Visa Center (NVC) and how to file State Department forms DS-260 and DS-261 with the NVC as part of the consular green card process.

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The Ultimate Guide to the U.S. Immigration Process

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 26, 2022

The United States is a very popular immigration destination because of the many benefits and privileges U.S. citizens and green card holders enjoy. If you have decided to immigrate to the U.S., you are probably wondering what the immigration process is like. There are many different kinds of U.S. immigrant visas. Still, the U.S. immigration process generally begins with an eligible sponsor filing a petition with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for the foreign national who wants to come to the United States. This is called petitioning. If all goes well with petitioning, the next step is usually that the foreign national applies for an immigrant visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad or adjusts status to lawful permanent resident status in the United States. This article will walk you through the different U.S. immigrant visa types and provide a step-by-step guide on applying for them. [ImmigrationHelp.org](http://immigrationhelp.org/) can help you [prepare your U.S. immigration application forms for free](http://bit.ly/IHOmain) with our easy-to-use online tool. Read on to learn more.

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10 Reasons for Your Green Card Application Denial

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

There are a lot of moving parts to the green card application process, and it's important to pay careful attention when you’re putting your application together. Sometimes, making mistakes on your application can cause the U.S. government to deny it. Other times, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will deny your visa application because you are inadmissible for one reason or the other. In this article, we're highlighting 10 of the most common reasons why the U.S. government would deny your green card application.

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Green Card Processing Times

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

The time frame for the U.S. government to process lawful permanent resident applications depends on different factors. The kind of green card you’re applying for, the type of family relation your application depends on, and where you are applying from, all directly impact how long it will take to get your card. This article explains how much time it takes on average to get different types of family-based green cards from start to finish. We also include how you can check your green card case status at any time during the application process.

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How To Get a Copy of Your Birth Certificate for Your Green Card Application

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

When applying for a green card, you have to submit additional documents with the completed official forms. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) requires you to submit a copy of your birth certificate when applying for a family-based green card like a marriage green card. Without the required supporting documents, USCIS will not process your green card application. This article explains the birth certificate requirement for green card applications and how to get a copy of your birth certificate to send in with your forms.

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How To Apply for a Marriage Green Card From Abroad

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

Foreign spouses of U.S. lawful permanent residents can only apply for their marriage green card through consular processing. This means that they will have to submit their green card application through the U.S. embassy or U.S. consulate in their home country to become lawful permanent residents themselves. This article explains the step-by-step consular processing timeline for getting your green card as the spouse of a U.S. green cardholder.

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How To Prove You’re in a “Bona Fide” Marriage for Your Green Card Application

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written April 27, 2022

A bona fide relationship is one where both parties share a true and genuine romantic connection. When you’re applying for a marriage green card, you need to prove to the U.S. government that you and your spouse share genuine romantic affection and that your marriage is real and not a sham for immigration purposes. You will have two opportunities to prove you’re in a bona fide marriage - your I-130 petition and your green card interview. This article explains evidence that may help demonstrate that your marriage is real.

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What Is Form I-130A, Supplemental Information for a Spouse?

Written by Jonathan Petts

To file a marriage green card petition, you and your spouse will have to submit several forms to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). The entire process begins when your U.S citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse successfully files Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, on your behalf. Sometimes, depending on your unique background, you will have to provide important extra information with Form I-130. You’ll often do that with Form I-130A. This guide explains Form I-130A, who needs to file the form, and how to file it.

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A Guide to the Diversity Visa Lottery

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 25, 2022

The Diversity Visa Program (DV Program) is one of the multiple ways for noncitizens to become U.S. permanent residents. The program is a free lottery that people from countries around the world can enter for a chance to apply for green cards and live and work legally in the United States. Winners of the lottery don't need to have family or employment relationships with U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents to apply for their green cards. This article discusses the history of the diversity visa lottery and explains who can apply for it as well as the application process.

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Can You Get a Green Card if You Overstay Your Visa?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 24, 2022

Many immigrants without lawful status first came into the United States with valid visas and stayed past the end of their approved visit. Under U.S. immigration law, there are consequences for people who end up overstaying their visa, including a bar from re-entering the country. If you apply for a green card after a visa overstay, a re-entry bar will significantly lengthen your application process or prevent you from applying altogether. You may be able to apply for a waiver that legally forgives your overstay so you can apply for a green card. In this article, we explain how to know if you’ve overstayed your visa, whether or not a pathway to a green card is available to you, and how to use waivers of inadmissibility for unlawful presence.

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What Is a Green Card and How Do I Apply for One?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written May 12, 2021

A U.S. green card will let you live and work lawfully in the United States as a permanent resident. Lawful permanent resident status is not the same as citizenship. Still, it comes with immigration benefits like work authorization. There are various types of green cards. This article explains what a green card is, the different types of green cards available, who can apply for them, and the green card application process step-by-step.

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How to Renew Your Green Card: Everything You Need to Know About the Green Card Renewal Process in 2022

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written September 17, 2020

It is crucial that you maintain a valid, unexpired green card. A valid green card proves that you are legally allowed to live and work in the United States. It also allows you to re-enter the U.S. after traveling abroad. If you have an expired green card or if it will expire within the next six months, it’s time to renew it. 

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How To Apply for a Green Card for Your Parent – A Step-by-Step Guide

Written by Jonathan Petts
Written August 26, 2020

If you are a U.S. citizen who is 21 years of age or older, you can napply for a green card for your parents. This green card is an immigrant visa that makes parents of U.S. citizens lawful permanent residents in the United States. There is no limit on the number of parent green cards issued each year. The application process generally takes about 12 months and requires $420 in filing fees. This article explains the process of applying for a parent green card in detail.

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