Permanent Residency Lawyers
What is Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) Status?
Obtaining lawful permanent residency (LPR) is one of the most important steps toward remaining permanently in the United States. LPR status must be attained before one can become a U.S. citizen. After an alien has been granted immigrant status, he may apply to adjust to permanent resident status.
How Can I Apply for LPR?
Adjustment of status refers to the process of obtaining permanent residency without leaving the U.S. The applicant must prove he has a familial relationship with a permanent resident or U.S. citizen or a job offer which will not displace another U.S. worker. The applicant must then establish that:
- He was inspected and admitted or paroled into the United States
- There is an immigrant visa immediately available to him at the time the application is filed
- He was lawfully in status at the time of the filing
- He is otherwise eligible for admission to the United States
- He has not engaged in unauthorized employment after January 1, 1997
- He must then convince the Attorney General that the adjustment of status should be granted
Who is Eligible to Apply?
An alien may be eligible to apply if he is in the U.S. and falls into one or more of the following categories:
- Family Member - The alien is the spouse, parent, or unmarried child under 21 - there are other classes of aliens that also fall in this category
- Employment - The alien has an approved visa petition filed on his behalf by a U.S. employer
- Visa Number - Family- or employment-based immigrants must have an immigrant visa number unless they are in a category exempt from numerical limitations
- Fiancé - The alien was admitted on a K-1 Fiancé visa and then married the U.S. citizen who applied for the K-1 visa for the alien
- Asylee - The alien is an asylee or refugee who has been in the U.S. for at least a year after being given asylee or refugee status
- Diversity Visa - The alien has won a visa in the diversity visa lottery ¿ each year, the Diversity Lottery Program has made 55,000 immigrant visas available through a lottery from countries with low rates of immigration
Who is Ineligible to Apply?
You may be ineligible to apply for adjustment for a number of reasons. These include:
- You entered the U.S. while in transit to another country without obtaining a visa
- You were not admitted or paroled into the U.S. after inspection by Immigration
- You are employed in the U.S. without United States Citizenship and Immigration Services authorization, or you are no longer legally in the country
There are many other reasons why you would be ineligible (check Form I-485 for more information).
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Last Modified: 01-12-2011 12:11 PM PST
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