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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: or  call our office at: (954) 382-5378
Questions & Answers
Question: My fiancée got her green card recently through her citizen mother and immigrated to the U.S. in January this year. We have been dating many years, but never got married. I have a 12 year old daughter by a former marriage. My question is, if me and my daughter use our American tourist visas to come to the U.S. and if me and my fiancée get married, can my wife then file for me and my daughter while we are in the states? Could we also wait in the states for green cards to be granted or do we have to fly back to our country? Hope you can represent us in getting our green cards in the U.S.. Thank you.
Answer: U.S. Citizens can sponsor their spouse and children (referred to as “Immediate Relatives”) while they are in the U.S. and they can file to adjust their status to U.S. Residency immediately, without the need maintaining immigration status. 

However, the law is very different for spouses and children of U.S. Residents, since they must wait until there is an Immigrant Visa available in order to obtain U.S. Residency. Currently, it can take a year and a half for a visa to be available once the family petition is filed. In such cases, spouses and children of U.S. Residents who are the beneficiaries of a family petition and who want to adjust status to U.S. Residency inside the U.S. can only stay in the U.S. and wait for an Immigrant Visa to be available if they continue to maintain legal immigration status. Those who fail to maintain legal status are not eligible to obtain a Green Card inside the U.S. until the sponsoring U.S. Resident becomes a U.S. Citizen. 

President Obama has a new policy which allows spouses and minor children of Residents who have valid visas to adjust status in the U.S. about eight months after the immigrant petition is filed. Filing dates are released every month by the Administration with specific adjustment application filing dates. 

In your case, once you and your fiancée get married, you can return home and wait, then later, return to the U.S. and file for adjustment of status once the new adjustment dates allow it. We can represent you and your daughter in your Residency cases. See you next week.

This Week's Immigration News 
By Immigration Attorney Caroly Pedersen
Study Shows Nearly A Quarter of All American Children Have An Immigrant Parent
In a recent study by at the Urban Institute, researchers found that nearly one in every four U.S. born children have at least one foreign born parent. The study also found that U.S. children of immigrants are more likely than other children to live in a family with both parents. 

Almost 50% of all children of immigrants live in one of ten major cities: New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Miami, Dallas, Washington, DC, Riverside (CA), San Francisco, and Atlanta.
Tips On Using The Child Status Protection Act 
To Keep Children From “Aging Out”
The age of the child is particularly important for children whose parents are sponsored by U.S. Parents and Siblings, where the waiting line for a visa can be 10 -12 years or more, since it is much more likely that the child will turn age 21 and age out.

The Child Status Protection Act ("CSPA") was enacted into law in 2002 to assist children who turn age 21 and would normally “age-out”, meaning become ineligible to immigrate as a minor (under age 21). The CSPA changed the process for determining whether a child has "aged out" (i.e. turned 21 years of age before being issued an immigrant visa or adjusting status) for the purpose of the issuance of visas and the adjustment of status of applicants in most immigrant categories. Under CSPA, the age of a child can be reduced by the time that the I-130 petition was “pending” with the USCIS, in some cases bringing the child’s age down under age 21 for immigration purposes.
Under Immigration regulations, a “minor child” is defined as a child under age 21 who is not single. Qualifying as a minor child is particularly important because of long immigration waiting lines. Minor children of U.S. Citizens are considered as “Immediate Relatives” which allow them to immigrate to the U.S. nearly immediately. 

Minor children of U.S. Residents can immigrate to the U.S. in as little as 1 ½ to 2 years. Whereas children of Citizens and Residents who turn age 21 are forced to wait for 7-8 years to immigrate! Similarly, immigrant children who are dependents of parents who have been sponsored by a relative in the U.S. are only eligible to immigrate to the U.S. along with their family if they are under age 21 when the family immigrates. 
Call Our Office at: 954-382-5378 To Find Out More About Preserving 
Your Child’s “Minor” Age Status 
There is a specific formula for determining whether a child's age is protected by the CSPA and there are required dates that must be plugged into the formula. When an immigrant visa first becomes available to the child and the child is age 21 or older, the amount of years which the I-130 petition was being processed by the USCIS can then be subtracted from the child’s current age, to determine whether they are technically still under age 21. If so, the child can still immigrate as a minor child. 

For example, if an I-130 has been pending for 1095 days (3 years) and a child is age and a child is 22 years old about to turn age 23, we can deduct 1095 days from the child’s age to bring the child under age 21.
Immigration How To: 
How Do I Make An Infopass Appointment?
Select the type of appointment you need to solve your problem, Provide your name, date of birth, ZIP code and telephone number, choose an available date and time for your appointment (if you don’t see a convenient time, check back with InfoPass – new appointment choices are made available each working day); and when the appointment notice appears on your computer screen (showing the time, date and location of your appointment), print it out to show at your InfoPass appointment. 

On the day of your appointment you will need bring:

Printout of the InfoPass appointment notice confirmation

Government-issued Photo identification (passport, valid driver’s license, Employment Authorization Document, or Form I-551, Permanent Resident Card (‘green card”)

All immigration forms, receipt notices, approval or denial letters-including translations and original documents that relate to your inquiry.

For general information you can call the USCIS at 1-800-375-5283
Free USCIS Online Tools For Naturalization Preparation
The USCIS has free online Naturalization tools available for U.S. Residents who are applying for U.S. Citizenship. 

These tools include an online Citizenship Resource Center, Civics and Citizenship Toolkit for information on citizenship and naturalization topics, study guides and tests and Literacy resources, to assist Residents in learning or improving written English writing skills.
Helpful Immigration Tips You Can Use
Make An InfoPass Appointment To Check The Status of Your Immigration Case

InfoPass allows you to schedule an appointment a the local U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office and to make an inquiry about your case with an Immigration Officer.

Click Here to schedule an appointment and select “Make Your Appointment with Infopass”

Type in your mailing address ZIP code (so that InfoPass will assign you to the correct USCIS office)