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  Immigration News & Updates              eNewsletter

  POSTING DATE: DECEMBER 28,  2015
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Immigration News & Updates eNewsletter ©  2011  - 2016 
For questions about U.S. Residency, Green Cards and Immigration Visas, Visit our Website at: www.ImmigrateToday.com or  call our office at: (954) 382-5378
Immigration
Questions & Answers
Question: Hi, I am 34 years old living in Colombia and my dad filed for me back in 2009 when he was a Green Card holder. I got married recently in 2015. My dad is in the process of getting his U.S. Citizenship now and once he does, he wants to file for me again and include my husband. My question is whether I can keep the original filing date of 2009 when my dad files the new petition, since I have been in the system for so long before waiting to immigrate?
Answer: That’s a great question. It’s important to understand that the rules are very different for children of U.S. Residents, compared with those of U.S. Citizens. With children of U.S. Citizens, if a parent files for a single adult child (F1 category) and the child later marries, the child simply changes to the F3 category and keeps the same original date of filing, called the “Priority Date”. The Priority Date is important because it determines where an Immigrant is in the Immigrant Visa waiting line. However, for adult children of U.S. Residents, there is only one category, F2B and that is for single adult children only, there is no immigration category for married children of U.S. Residents. So when a single adult child marries, the I-130 petition the U.S. Resident parent filed is automatically cancelled. There is no way to recapture the date that the original I-130 was filed when the child was single, since the marriage caused the original petition to be essentially void. When an adult single child of a U.S. Resident waits until after their parent Naturalizes and becomes a U.S. Citizen, they simply move to the F3 category and maintain the original Priority Date, the date the original I-130 was filed by the U.S. Resident parent.
In your circumstances, you won’t be able to keep your original priority date in 2009. As long as your dad naturalizes in 2016 and files a new petition for you, your new priority date will be that date in 2016. Right now, the visa line in the F3 category for married children of U.S. Citizens is August of 2004, so you have another 12 years or so to wait. I hope this was helpful to you.
This Week's Immigration News 
By Immigration Attorney Caroly Pedersen
Stay Informed - Sign-up For USCIS E-Notification & Email Updates On Your Immigration Case 
The USCIS offers several very convenient ways for Applicants to get updates on newly filed and pending Immigration cases. Immigrants and Sponsors filing Immigration applications with the USCIS can now sign-up to receive text messages and email E-notifications confirming application receipt by the USCIS, along with the case receipt number(s). The receipt number allows individuals to track the status of their case online. E-notifications are issued within 24 hours after the USCIS receives the application.

To request e-notification, download and complete form G-1145 and mail along with all Immigration applications.  

Once you receive your case number, go to the USCIS website and sign up for Email Status updates on your case through the USCIS My Case Status program. Once you register and enter your case number(s), the USICS will automatically email you notifications and updates on any actions take on your case so that you are better informed about your case status. 
For instance, once your Immigration application is filed, the USCIS may issue you a letter requesting more evidence in order to continue processing the case. If you are registered to receive case status updates, you will receive an email notification that the USCIS has issued the request, which helps you to be aware that you should be receiving the request by mail soon. If you have not received the request, you can then make further inquiries. Similarly, once you respond to the USCIS request, you will receive an updated email notification that they have received your documentation. It’s a great way to stay informed and keep up to date on the status of your case as it is being processed.
Holidays Are For Families - Find Out Which Family Members Can Be Sponsored By Whom & And How Long It Will Take For Them To Immigrate To the U.S. 
I often get questions from U.S. Citizens and U.S. Residents alike about which family members they are eligible to sponsor, when they are allowed to initiate the process, how many family members can be sponsored at one time and how long it will be before their loved ones can immigrate to the U.S.
U.S. Residents are eligible to sponsor: 

1) Spouses and Minor Children called F2A and 

2) Adult Single Sons & Daughters (and their minor children) called F2B. U.S. Residents cannot sponsor their Parents, Adult Married Sons & Daughters or their Brothers & Sisters. If a child who has been sponsored by a Resident marries before the parent becomes a U.S. Citizen, the Immigration case is automatically cancelled, even if the child later divorces.

Waiting Times For Family Members in all Countries except Mexico/India & Philippines: 

1) Immediate Relatives (Spouses, Minor Children and Parents of U.S. Citizens), there is no waiting line, just USCIS and consular processing time (approx 8-12 months). 
2) F1 - Adult Single Sons & Daughters of U.S. Citizens, the waiting line is approx 6-7 years, 
3) F3 -Adult Married Sons & Daughters of U.S. Citizens, the waiting line is approx 11-12+ years, 
4) F4 -Brothers & Sisters of U.S. Citizens , the waiting line is approx 12-14+ years, 
5) F2A -Spouses and Minor Children of U.S. Residents, the waiting line is approx 1 1/2 years and 
6) F2B -Adult Single Sons & Daughters of U.S. Residents, the waiting line is approx 7-8 years.
Under current Immigration regulations, once an Immigrant receives U.S. Residency, (even Conditional 2 year Residency through marriage), and similarly when a Resident becomes Naturalized, they are eligible to sponsor any and all family members in any of the qualifying categories. There is no limit on the number of family members which can be sponsored at the same time. For instance, a U.S. Citizen can sponsor an adult, single daughter, a married son and 3 sisters and 2 brothers all at the same time. However, due to the difference in waiting times, each family member be immigrating at different times, depending upon the Family Immigration category. Congressional Immigration reforms in the future may limit the type and amount of family members allowed to immigrate to the U.S., but for now, the number is limitless, so don’t wait until it is too late… 

Learn more about Family Visa waiting lines:

Understanding Family Immigrant Visa Waiting Lines
Here’s how it works:

U.S. Citizens are eligible to sponsor:

1) Spouses, Minor Children and Parents (called "Immediate Relatives")  
2) Adult Single Sons & Daughters (and their minor children) F1
3) Adult Married Sons & Daughters (and their spouses and minor children) called F3 and 
4) Brothers & Sisters (and their spouses and minor children) called F4.
Immigration How To:
How Do I Find Out What USCIS Policies & Procedures Are?
You Can Read The Updated USCIS Policy Manual Online
In an effort to  improve transparency and efficiency, the USCIS has recently released an extensive USCIS Immigration Policy Manual for immigration policies and procedures in the areas of citizenship and naturalization, adjustment of status, admissibility, protection and parole, nonimmigrants, refugees, asylees, immigrants, waivers, and travel and employment.​
Immigration regulations require that all immigrants change their address with the USCIS within 10 days of moving. This is done by changing your address on the USCIS website electronically. For those with cases pending with the USCIS, including family petitions, adjustment of status, work authorization, etc, not only must you change your address online, but as a safeguard through the USCIS 800 number as well. 
Tips on Changing Your Address with the USCIS When You Move 
Helpful Immigration Hints You Can Use
The reason is that even though your address is changed in the general USCIS database through the electronic online filing, this does not necessarily change your address in the database for any of your pending cases.  

So, as an additional measure, here are the instructions on changing your address with the USCIS:

** For those with pending cases, have your I-797 Notice of Action Receipt available for each case type.

1)Change Address on the USCIS Website: Go online to the USCIS Address Change page and complete and file the form for each pending case. Print out a copy of the filed form for your records and write the filing date on it. 

2)Call the USCIS 800#: Call the USCIS to notify them of the address change at 800-375-5283 and give them all your case numbers so they can confirm the change has been made in all the databases.

3)Infopass Appointment: For cases pending at local USCIS Field Offices, this is an additional step to be sure that the local office USCIS database has been properly updated. Give the information officer a copy of your address change (from online filing) and ask her/him to check the computer to confirm that the address has been updated. Good luck!