If you wish to file a petition to become a permanent citizen in the United States, you may be interested in finding out valuable information about the petitioning process. To discover a handy guide that is full of useful tips that will increase your chances of having your green card petition approved, simply continue reading.

Your Rights While You Are Waiting For Your Petition To Be Processed

Can you stay in the US while waiting for a petition? Unfortunately, the simple answer is no. You will not be able to remain in the United States until your petition is either approved or denied. For example, if you are visiting the United States on a temporary tourist visa and you are visiting a close family member who has offered to submit a petition for you on your behalf, you will not be able to wait in the United States for the results of your petition. Instead, you'll be expected to return to your home country, to await news of your petition.

Also keep in mind that if the USCIS decides to transfer your application to the next petition stage, which is handled by the nearest US embassy or consulate to your home city, you'll need to attend an in-person interview at the embassy or consulate in question.

Even if you are applying for a green card by marrying a US citizen, you'll need to exit the United States in order to apply for a K1 fiance visa. If and only if this visa is approved will you be able to enter the country, in order to finalize your visa. Keep in mind that if you enter the country on a K1 fiance visa you'll only have 90 days to go through a legal wedding ceremony. If you do not get married within the required 90 day time period, you'll be required to leave the United States immediately and will not be issued a green card.

So even if you're currently in the United States, be prepared to leave the country before you apply for a green card. Unless you are seeking a green card through asylum and are scared for your safety if you were to return to your home country.

The Interview Process

If you are asked to attend an in-person interview at a foreign-based US consulate or embassy, the good news is that you've reached the final part of your visa process. Most candidates who reach this stage of the visa process are issued green cards.

Elegibility Requirements

Before submitting a petition request to the USCIS it's critical to ensure that you clearly understand the eligibility requirements of the permanent visa that you're applying for. In order to avoid wasting your time and money.

For example, if you hope to gain a green card by being the immediate family member of a US citizen or permanent resident, you may be disappointed to find out that grandparents, aunts, and cousins are not eligible to sponsor you for a green card. Instead, only your parents, siblings over the age of 18, or a long-term partner such as a fiance or spouse who is a US citizen can sponsor a family-based petition on your behalf.

While family-based applications are definitely prioritized by the USCIS and are the easiest green cards to get, if you don't meet the eligibility requirements to apply for one, you do have alternative options. For instance, if you manage to get a permanent job offer from a US-based employer, they will be able to file a petition for you. As long as you both meet the eligibility requirements that relate to employer-sponsored green cards. For example, you'll have to prove that you have the right educational background and work experience to fill the job position which you've been offered in the United States. While your potential new employer will have to prove that they have the means to pay your wage or salary for the foreseeable future.

Alternatively, if you have a lot of disposable income, you may want to consider applying for a green card visa as an investor. As you can be issued a green card by investing a large sum of money in a US-owned business or businesses.

Supplementary Evidence

One complication that may arise during your visa application process is that you may be asked by either the USCIS or your nearest US embassy or consulate to provide additional information to support your case. For example, if you apply for a spouse-sponsored visa, you may be asked to submit extra proof that your marriage is genuine and that you have not gotten married to a US citizen for the sole purpose of gaining a green card. In this circumstance, extra evidence can come in the form of letters of reference from individuals who know both you and your spouse or photographs of yourself with your spouse over a long period of time.

If you are asked to provide extra evidence to the USCIS or a US embassy or consulate, you may want to ask an immigration attorney for advice on exactly what information you should submit as supplementary evidence.

Getting Started

Once you're ready to submit your petition, you need to figure out whether you need to submit your petition directly to the USCIS through their online portal or whether a family member or future employer needs to file your petition for you. For example, if you apply for an employer-based green card, your future employer must submit your visa petition for you.

Conclusion

If you are willing to go through the sometimes lengthy process in order to be issued a US green card which will give you the right to legally live and work in the US indefinitely, it's well worth applying for a green card. It's also a great idea to contact an experienced immigration attorney. As they'll be able to help you through each step in the immigration process. For example, they'll be able to double-check that you have all the right information in your application package for your petition to be accepted and processed.

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