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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: Our American born son is 20 and will turn 21 next month, then apply for me, my husband and 2 kids both under age 18. We have a few questions for you about representing us in our case: 1) Since both kids are under the age of 18, can they be included in our process through our American son? 2) How long will the process be for us to immigrate? 3) We have a single daughter who is 27 years old, what can we do about her immigration? Thanks
Answer: This is a very common question and often very confusing to Parents of U.S. Citizens who have minor children. Parents of U.S. Citizens are called “Immediate Relatives” (as are Spouses and Minor children).U.S. Immigration regulations only allow U.S. Citizens to sponsor each of their Immediate Relatives separately and no dependent spouses or minor children are able to immigrate along with them. For instance a U.S. Citizen child cannot sponsor his Parents together as a couple, instead, each parent must be sponsored separately in a separate family petition. Therefore, your son can sponsor you and your wife (his mom) separately and you can immigrate to the U.S.. however your children will not be able to immigrate along with you. It currently takes between 8-12 months for Parents of U.S. Citizens to immigrate to the U.S. 

The children can obtain U.S. Residency later in one of several ways:

1) Once you obtain your Green Card you can sponsor them. Children of U.S. Residents who are under age 21 are in the Immigration category called F2A for minor children of U.S. Residents. The visa line in that category is currently about 1 ½ years. 
2) As a U.S. Resident you will also be able to sponsor your adult daughter as well. Adult, single Children of U.S. Residents who are age 21 or older are in the Immigration category called F2B.The visa line in that category is currently about 7-8 years and children cannot marry during that time or the petition is cancelled.
3) Your U.S. Citizen son can petition for his sister in the F4 Immigration category for siblings (and their spouses & children) of U.S. Citizens, but the visa line in that category is currently 12 to 14 years.
This Week's Immigration News 
By Immigration Attorney Caroly Pedersen
Immigration How To:
How Do I Self Check My Immigration Employment Eligibility Status?
New 2016 Poverty Guidelines Released 
for I-864 Affidavit of Support
The new minimum income requirements under the I-864 Affidavit of Support have been released. U.S. Citizen and U.S. Resident Sponsors are required to meet or exceed 125% of the Poverty Guidelines in order to qualify. The income requirements for 2016 have increased just slightly from 2015. 

For example, the minimum yearly income of $ 20,025 is now required to sponsor a Spouse, compared with $19,912 for 2015. Take a look at the new 2016 Poverty Guidelines which includes all U.S. States.

Number of Family            Minimum Income Requirements 125% of Poverty Guidelines
Members in Household       All States (other than Alaska & Hawaii)
Including the Immigrant

**Add $5,200 for each additional person
Here’s a few important tips for Sponsors to remember when filing Affidavits of Support:
3) If the sponsor does not meet the requirements, he or she must still file an I-864 and include an I-864 from a Joint-sponsor who does meet the qualifications and be sure to include a copy of the Joint-sponsor’s U.S. Birth Certificate, U.S. Passport, Naturalization Certificate or Green Card b) copy of the most recent tax return and W-2 c) past 3 months paystubs and d) current letter from his or her employer stating fulltime position, dates of employment and wages (which match his or her paystubs).

4) U.S. Citizen parents sponsoring minor children under age 18 are not required to file Affidavits of Support , since the immigrating child will automatically become a U.S. Citizen upon obtaining U.S. Residency. Instead, the child is required to file form I-864W requesting the exemption.

You can learn more about preparing I-864 Affidavits of Support and meeting the minimum income requirements by visiting our website at: or  by calling our office at: 954-382-5378.
1) Make sure that your adjusted gross income on your tax return meets the minimum income requirements  

2) Always include a copy of a) your most recent tax return and W-2 b) past 3 months paystubs and c) current letter from your employer stating your fulltime position, dates of employment and wages (which match your paystubs).
Question: I have been married to my husband since 2014 and I received my two years green card which will be expired this May 2016. How soon will I be able to apply for my USA citizenship.
Answer: You must apply for your Removal of Condition 90 days before expiration of your Green Card, which means between now and no later than several weeks before your Green Card expires in May. Once your permanent Residency is approved and you have been a U.S. Resident for 2 years and 9 months and as long as you and your husband are living together as a real married couple and have extensive documentation to prove your continuing marital relationship, you can apply for Early Naturalization in February of 2017.
Helpful Immigration Tips You Can Use...
Tips For Understanding What Happens At Your Naturalization Ceremony 
Once your Application for Naturalization is approved, the USCIS puts your case in the queue to be scheduled for your Oath of Allegiance which takes place at your naturalization ceremony. This taking of your Oath of Allegiance complete the process of becoming a U.S. citizen.
Understanding the types of Oath Ceremonies:

There are two kinds of Oath of Allegiance ceremonies, one, is a judicial ceremony, where the court administers the Oath of Allegiance for Residents who have requested a name change and the regular administrative ceremony, during which the USCIS administers the Oath of Allegiance.

So what’s going to happen at your naturalization ceremony?

1. Receive Your Naturalization Ceremony Notice to Take the Oath of Allegiance

While some Immigrants who request it may be able to participate in a naturalization ceremony on the same day as their naturalization interview, many Residents must wait for the USCIS mail them a notice with the date, time, and location of their scheduled naturalization ceremony, called a Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony (Form – N-445). Those who cannot attend the scheduled naturalization ceremony must return the notice to their local USCIS office, along with a letter requesting a new date and explaining why they are not able to attend the scheduled naturalization ceremony. Residents who fail to show up for their naturalization ceremony without having requested a rescheduling may receive a denial of their naturalization case.

2. Complete Form N-445, Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony before checking in at the Ceremony
Residents should complete Form N-445, Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony before arriving at the ceremony, prior to check in with USCIS. During check-in, a USCIS officer will review your responses to the questionnaire.

3. Surrender of your Permanent Resident Card (Green Card) 

Residents who are becoming U.S. Citizens must surrender their Permanent Resident Cards to the USCIS at the time they check- in for the naturalization ceremony. Those who have lost their cards can receive a waiver. 

4. Taking the Oath of Allegiance to the United States

A Resident is not a U.S. citizen until he/she takes the Oath of Allegiance to the United States during the naturalization ceremony. After the Oath, new U.S Citizens receive their Certificate of Naturalization.

5. Notes about the Certificate of Naturalization

New U.S Citizens should carefully review the Certificate of Naturalization for accuracy while still at the ceremony. Any inaccuracies must be brought to the attention of the USCIS before leaving the ceremony. Unless or until you apply for your U.S. Passport, your Certificate of Naturalization is your official proof of your U.S. Citizenship. Those who lose their Certificate of Naturalization must request a replacement by filing Form N-565, Application for Replacement Naturalization/Citizenship Document and paying the $345 USCIS filing fee. The waiting time for a replacement can be lengthy.
downloading the form. 

6. Time to apply for Your U.S. Passport

Once you receive your Certificate of Naturalization, you can immediately apply for a U.S. passport. You will receive an application for a U.S. passport at your naturalization ceremony, called the “U.S. Citizenship Welcome Packet” or you can go online to the U.S. Passport office  

7. Time to Register to Vote!

Now that you are a U.S. Citizen, it is your right and privilege to vote. You can register to vote at certain locations in your community, which may include post offices, motor vehicle offices, county boards of election, and offices of your state Secretary of State. You can read more about registering to vote by reading the government publication: “A Voter’s Guide to Federal Elections."

8. Final Step: Update your Social Security Record

After you become a U.S. Citizen, you will need to notify the Social Security Administration (SSA) to update your Social Security record. You can find your local Social Security office by calling 1-800-772-1213 or by visiting: You can go to your local SSA office about ten days after your ceremony to give time for the SSA to be able to access your new status in the USCIS records. Be sure to take your Certificate of Naturalization or U.S. passport with you. Good luck! 
Did you know that the USCIS has a website which gives Immigrant and other workers the ability to safely check their own employment authorization status in the government system? Its True!

 The USCIS has a website which gives Immigrant and other workers the ability to safely check their own employment authorization status in the government system. 
Website Allows Immigrant Workers To Self-check 
Employment Eligibility Status
Called “My E-Verify”, the website gives individuals free access to self-check employment eligibility and to see information about themselves that an employer might see about them in the government E-Verify system, as well as to assist workers to combat fraud and protect against identity theft.