1. What types of visas are available if I want to come to the U.S. for a visit or temporary stay?
While there are about 185 different types of visas, there are two main categories of U.S. visas: Nonimmigrant visa - for temporary visits such as for tourism, business, work, visiting family, or studying. Immigrant visa - for people to immigrate to the United States.
2.What type of visa should I get if I want to become a permanent U.S. resident?
Depending on your current immigration status or situation, there are a number of visas available to foreign nationals wishing to permanently immigrate to the United States. There is a fiancée visa (if you are a foreign national engaged to a U.S. citizen), family visas (if you have or are the relative of a U.S. citizen and wish to immigrate to the U.S.), a work visa (if you have unique skills or requirements which make you a hot commodity in a particular field or industry), and more.
3. How long will my green card remain valid?
Permanent residency, obtained through a green card, allows a foreign national to live in work in the United States on a potentially indefinite basis. When a green card is first issued it is often a temporary green card and is valid for two years. After the first two years, providing you have not been convicted of any criminal activity and have maintained your eligibility status, you can apply for a permanent residence visa which is valid for ten years.
4. My visa has expired, what can I do?
If your visa has expired, the first thing you need to do is contact an immigration attorney from our firm. We will sit down with you, review your current status and situation, and then help you determine the best course of action to pursue. Time is of the essence when it comes to expired visas, so we advise you do no delay.
5. I have received a deportation order, is there anything I can do to avoid being deported?
If you receive a deportation order or notification, the first thing you must do is contact a knowledgeable immigration attorney at our firm, who will work with you closely to build your deportation defense. You need an attorney who understands and is skilled in all aspects of immigration law. Our attorneys are committed to providing you with the honest, aggressive representation you need.
6. What are some factors that are considered by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in granting an individual immigration status?
A: Factors considered by the USCIS include: Whether the applicant has an immediate relative who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident; Whether the applicant has a permanent employment opportunity in the U.S., and whether that employment fits under one of the five eligible employment categories; Whether the applicant is making a capital investment in the U.S. that meets certain dollar thresholds, and that either creates or saves a specified number of jobs; and Whether the applicant qualifies for refugee status as an individual who suffers or fears persecution on the basis of race, religion, nationality, political view, or membership in a certain group in his or her country of origin.
7. What is the basis for being deported? What are the consequences of deportation?
Deportation (or removal) occurs when an alien is found to have violated certain immigration or criminal laws, consequences being that the alien forfeits his or her right to remain in the U.S., and is usually barred from returning.
8. How is the deportation process initiated?
The Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement issues a Notice to Appear (NTA) stating the reason why the alien should be deported or removed. The NTA is served to the alien and is filed with the immigration court. A hearing is scheduled, at which an immigration judge will determine if the information in the NTA is correct. If it is, removal of the alien will be ordered.
9.Can a deportation or removal order be appealed?
Yes. The alien has 30 days to appeal the decision to the Board of Immigration (BIA). If the BIA decides against the alien, the matter can be appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals. Finally, if the Court of Appeals also finds against the alien, the matter can be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.
10. Under what circumstance will a foreign spouse's permanent resident status in the U.S. be conditional?
A spouse's permanent resident status will be conditional if it is based on a marriage that was less than two years old from the day the permanent resident status was granted. To remove the conditions, the spouse must establish that the purpose of the marriage was not to evade the U.S. immigration laws.
11. Under what circumstance will a foreign fiance(e), who has been admitted into the U.S. for the purpose of getting married, be required to leave the U.S.
If the marriage to the U.S. citizen who filed the petition to permit the fiance(e) into the U.S. does not take place within 90 days of entering the U.S., the fiance(e) will be required to leave the country.
12. Can a U.S citizen file an application to adopt a foreign-born child before the citizen has identified a child to adopt?
Yes. A married U.S. citizen, or an unmarried citizen who is at least 24 years of age and will be at least 25 when the petition is actually filed, may file a Form I-600A, Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition, to speed up the adoption process.
13. What is the basic law that governs immigration?
The federal Immigration and Nationality Act provides the basis for U.S. immigration law.