Adjustment of Status

Adjustment of Status (AOS) is a process available to people who are physically present in the United States and who are eligible to apply for a green card. People who live outside of the U.S. or who are physically present in the U.S. but ineligible for this process must undergo a procedure known as “consular processing” through their foreign country’s U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Who is Eligible for Adjustment of Status While in the U.S.?

To adjust status to a green card holder, a person must fall under one of the following eligibility categories, which are also provided on the USCIS website:

  • Family-Based Petition;
  • Employment-Based;
  • Special Immigrant Visa Holder;
  • Refugee or Asylum Status;
  • Victim of Human Trafficking or a Crime;
  • Victim of Abuse;
  • Other Categories.

Lawful Entry is a Requirement of Adjustment of Status

It is important to note that another caveat to determining an individual’s eligibility for Adjustment of Status is that they made a lawful entry into the United States. This means that they were admitted or paroled into the United States, that they entered the U.S. with some valid form of documentation, and were inspected by a U.S. immigration official. If you entered the U.S. with a valid visa which has since then expired, your entry into the U.S. was still valid for purposes of determining your AOS eligibility.

When to Apply for Adjustment of Status

The answer to this question depends on which eligibility category the applicant falls under. For example, an individual who is an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen and the beneficiary of a family-based petition will have a visa made immediately available to them. People in other categories may have to wait until a visa is made available to them, so they cannot apply to adjust their status until one is available in their category.

Consider setting up a consultation with an immigration attorney at Gilles Law, PLLC. You can reach us at 980-272-8438 at our office in Uptown Charlotte. We are here to assist with your inquiries.

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