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This Week's Immigration News 
By Immigration Attorney Caroly Pedersen

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Immigration News & Updates eNewsletter ©  2011  - 2015 
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: Hi, I hope you can answer my question for me. My dad got his residency in 2008 and filed for me while I was single and attending college. Then, in 2010 I got married. My dad just got his citizenship in 2015, so my question is, can we still use the petition my dad filed for me while I was single back in 2008 so that me and my husband can immigrate together? If not and he has to file a new case, can we request an earlier date of filing in 2008 in consideration due to the fact that I was in the system for so long before?
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 moves down to the F3 category (which has a longer line) but still 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, since you married before your dad naturalized, the petition he filed for you in 2008 is cancelled. If he now files another petition for you, this time as U.S. Citizen filing for a married child in the F3 Immigration category, the visa line is about 10+ years. But the longer your dad waits to re-file for you, the longer the line gets. I hope this was helpful to you. 

USCIS Begins Accepting Credit Card Payments 
for Naturalization Applications
New User-Friendly ESTA Website Launched for Visa Waiver Program Visitors
Under a new policy, the USCIS now accepts credit cards to pay Filing Fees for the Naturalization application fee of $680. To pay the Naturalization fee by credit card, Residents are required to complete form G-1450 and submit the completed signed form along with the Naturalization application. 

The USCIS does not currently accept credit card payments for any other type application. 

Download the new USCIS credit card authorization form:

New Form G-1450, Authorization for Credit Card Transaction
Question: I've been in the U.S for 5 years on a student visa. Is it possible for my uncle who is a U.S. Citizen to sponsor me?
Answer: Only certain family members can sponsor relatives to immigrate to the U.S.. U.S. Citizens can sponsor their Spouses, minor Children (under age 21) and Parents (called “Immediate Relatives”) and also their adult single Children (including their minor children under age 21) in the F1 Immigration Category, adult married Children (including spouse and minor children under age 21) in the F3 Immigration Category and Siblings (Brothers & Sisters and their spouse and minor children under age 21) in the F4 Immigration Category. 
U.S. Residents can sponsor their Spouses and minor Children in the F2A Immigration Category and single adult Children (and their minor children under age 21) in the F2B Immigration Category. There is no Immigration Category for a U.S. Resident to sponsor a married adult Child or a Parent.

Similarly, under immigration laws, an Aunt or Uncle cannot directly sponsor a Niece or Nephew. A Niece or Nephew can only immigrate as a minor child (under age 21) along with a parent who was sponsored directly by the parent’s sibling (the child’s Aunt or Uncle) in the F4 Immigration Category. Likewise, a Grandparent cannot sponsor a Grandchild. A Grandchild can only immigrate as a minor child (under age 21) along with a parent who was sponsored directly by the parent’s Parent in the F1 or F3 Immigration Category. Once a child becomes an adult at age 21 or older, they no longer qualify to immigrate along as a dependant along with a parent in any Immigration Category. 
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection CBP has launched a redesigned website for Visa Waiver Program (VWP) visitors to apply for an Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to traveling to the U. S..

The new website is more user-friendly, making the process of applying for an ESTA a more pleasant experience. The new website features include: 
Immigration How To:
How Do I  Replace A Lost I-94 Card?  
1) Access to frequently asked questions during the application process
 2) Mobile-friendly design allowing s VWP visitors to apply and check the status of their ESTA using their smartphones
 3) Translator for 23 languages
4) Group feature for families and groups to submit their applications at once

The VWP program allows nationals of 38 designated countries to visit the U.S. for up to 90 days or less without first obtaining a visa, as long as they submit an ESTA application and are approved prior to boarding a plane or ship.

Visit the new ESTA Website:

Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA)
Helpful Immigration Tips You Can Use
Visit USCIS Facebook Page
Yes, even the USCIS has a Facebook page. You can visit the USCIS Facebook page by clicking on the link below:

USCIS Facebook Page
An I-94 is a small slip of paper which was, until recently issued to all international visitors and visa holders entering the U.S.. Officially called the Arrival/Departure card, the I-94 contained the date of entry into the U.S. as well as the date by which the individual must depart from the U.S.. Often, individuals do not understand how important this little card is until it is too late.

In order to change immigration status inside the U.S. to any other immigrant or non-immigrant visa status, immigration regulations require that a copy of the I-94 be included with the application to establish eligibility. 
Foreign nationals must prove that they entered the U.S. legally and were inspected by an immigration officer in order to qualify to file for immigration status in the U.S.. Those who did not enter the U.S. legally are generally not entitled to obtain any new immigration status in the U.S., even when married to a U.S. citizen unless a Waiver is obtained.

If your I-94 card is lost, stolen or seriously damaged, you can apply to replace it by filing Form I-102, Application for Replacement/Initial Arrival-Departure Document. You also may file Form I-102 if you wish to receive a replacement I-94 card with corrected information on it — for example, if the immigration officer spelled your name wrong on the initial I-94 card. The nonrefundable filing fee for Form I-102 is $320. It generally takes about 60 days to receive the I-94 replacement card in the mail.

Under the new electronic I-94 system implemented in 2013, international visitors are no longer issued paper I-94 cards upon entry into the U.S.. Instead, individuals are provided with instructions on accessing their I-94 records online and printing the I-94 card out from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency. You can visit the CBP site to print out your paper I-94 cards:
Get Your I-94 Printout -U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)