Immigration Questions: (954) 382-5378
  Immigration News & Updates              eNewsletter

  POSTING DATE: MAY 18,  2015
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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
USCIS Provides Residency Extension “Stickers” 
To Green Card Renewal Applicants 
Questions & Answers
Question: My 75 year old mother and 41 year old sister are both U.S. Citizens living in Florida. I recently went through divorce and am ready to start my life again and want to immigrate to America to be with my family. So we are wondering whether its better for my mom or my sister to file for me? How long it will take for me to immigrate. Thank you.
Answer: Great question. The Immigration line for adult, single children of U.S. Citizens is about 7-8 years (called F1 Family Preference category). However, the waiting line for siblings (brothers & sisters) of U.S. Citizens is 12-14 years (called F4 Family Preference category). In your case, both your U.S. Citizen mother and sister can file family petitions for you, since there is no limit on the number of immigrant visa petitions that can be filed for an immigrant in different family categories. This way, you will have both options open to immigrate. However, you will have to wait many years in order to be able to legally immigrate, so you may want to look at other immigration options. Give me a call and we can discuss your situation in more detail.  
Kendale Lake Branch Library 15205 SW 88 St., Miami, Fl. 33196 - 4 - 7:30 PM on 5/21/15 & 6/18/15 
Southwest Regional Library 16835 Sheridan St., Pembroke Pines, Fl. - 6 - 7:30 PM on 5/26/2015
Homestead Branch Library 700 N. Homestead Blvd., Homestead, Fl. - 1 - 5 PM on 5/27/15 & 6/24/15
Miramar Branch Library 2050 Civic Center Place, Miramar, Fl.- 5:30 - 7:30 PM on 5/27/15 & 6/24/15
Northwest Regional Library 315 University Dr., Coral Springs, Fl.- 5:30 - 7:30 PM on 5/27/2015
West Dade Regional Library 9445 Coral Way, Miami, Fl. - 4 - 7:30 PM on 6/9/2015
Doral Branch Library 10785 NW 58 St., Doral, FL 33178- 6 - 7:30 PM on 6/17/2015
USCIS Announces Upcoming Immigration Information Desk Outreach Events In South Florida
Question: I got my American Citizenship last year and just had twin babies this past January. My mom came in December on her visitor visa and is staying with us taking helping take care of the babies. Her visa expires next month and we want to know if you can get my mom her legal status here in America so she can stay, or does she have to go home and wait for her Green Card papers to be approved then come back later? Thanks.
Answer: Parents of U.S Citizens are in a special category called “Immediate Relatives” which allows them to immigrate to the U.S. immediately, meaning they are not required to wait for a visa to be available like many other family categories. There are two options for Parents to obtain U.S. Residency, depending upon whether they have a U.S. Visa. The first option is called U.S. Adjustment of Status: This is for Parents who come to the U.S. on a Tourist or other legal visa and decide to immigrate, we can apply to adjust status to Residency inside the U.S., obtain their Work and Travel Permit within about 60-90 days and Green Cards within about 6-8 months. The second option, called Consular Processing is for Parents who either don’t have a U.S. visa or who prefer to stay in their home country while processing for an Immigrant Visa. The current processing time is about 8-12 months.

In your case, since your mom is already here, we can adjust her status to a Green Card while she is in the U.S. and there is no need for her to leave the country. 
Learn more about family immigration waiting lines by visiting our Family Immigration Visa resource 
section  or by calling our office at: 954-382-5378.
The extension stickers are valid for nine (9) months. Residents who have already attended their Biometrics appointment and did not request or receive the extension sticker can make an INFOPASS appointment to return to the local USCIS office and receive the extension sticker at that time. 

Make an Infopass Appointment at your local USCIS office:
Infopass Appointments 
Current USCIS processing times for Green Card renewal applications (Form I-90), can exceed 6-8 months, often causing problems for Residents who require proof of legal immigration status for Driver’s License and other renewals. As a result of these long delays, local Field Offices are authorized to provide Residents with a Green Card extension sticker, affixed to their expired cards, to provide proof of their continuing legal Residency status in the U.S.. 

Under this policy, USCIS personnel at USCIS Field Office Application Support Centers can provide extension stickers to Residents at the time of their Biometrics appointment. 
Find out where USCIS Events are scheduled Nationwide or in your local area:
​USCIS Outreach Events Calendar
Helpful Immigration Tips You Can Use...
Immigration How To:
How Do I know If I Need To File An Affidavit of Support?
Affidavits of Support - What Are They And Who Needs Them
In order to sponsor a family member to immigrate to the U.S. to become a Resident (receive a Green Card), all U.S. citizens and Residents must prove that they have the ability to support their foreign relative financially for a period of years. This is required to show the U.S. government that the family member immigrating is not someone likely to immigrate to the U.S. then go collect government assistance (often called "welfare"). The Affidavit is a legally binding promise by the Sponsor that they will take financial responsibility if the need arises so that their relative will not collect government assistance and if that does occur, the Sponsor will be responsible to reimburse any government agencies from which their immigrant family received financial assistance. 

The Affidavits of Support must always be filed by the U.S. citizen or Resident for their immigrating family member(s), even if they do not meet the minimum financial guidelines. In such cases, a Joint-Sponsor who does meet the financial requirements can provide an additional Affidavits of Support and will be bound by the same obligations. Joint-Sponsors must be either a Resident or U.S. Citizen, but are not required to be a family member. The sponsor’s obligation lasts until the immigrant either becomes a U.S. citizen, has earned 40 work quarters credited toward Social Security (about ten years of work), dies, or permanently leaves the United States. If the immigrant has already been living in the U.S. and worked legally, earning work credits before applying for the green card, those count toward the 40.

Minor Children (under age 18) of U.S. Citizens who automatically obtain U.S. Citizen upon being granted Residency are not required to have an Affidavit filed on their behalf, but must for a waiver form.

Good to know…
Understanding The USCIS Policy Which Provides Status and Work Authorization 
For Undocumented Family Members of U.S. Military Personnel
The Department of Homeland Security has a program which provides legal status, Work Permits and in some cases, Green Cards for many undocumented family members (including: spouses, children (under age 21), and parents) of U.S. Citizen members of the U.S. Armed Forces. 
You can find out more about obtaining status through the PIP program by calling our office at: (954) 382-5378.
Similar to the Obama Administration’s “Deferred Action” for DREAMERS, this  program allows “Immediate Relatives” of Thousands of U.S. Armed Forces personnel to live and work in the U.S. legally without fear of deportation. This change in policy in 2013 is seen as a humanitarian relief for Service Members, to reduce their stress and anxiety about the immigration status of their family members.The program is officially called “parole in place” (PIP) and designed to provide a temporary work permit and status for renewable one year periods. 

Most importantly, recipients of the PIP program do not risk deportation due to their unlawful status. Many Immediate Relatives who qualify for “Parole” under this PIP program will also qualify to obtain a Green Card through Adjustment of Status. Qualifying Family members (who have not been convicted of a crime) are those who entered the U.S. without inspection and are the Immediate Relative of a U.S. citizen who is an active duty member of the U.S. Armed Forces, Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve, or who previously served in the U.S. Armed Forces or the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve. 
EB-5 Investor Visa Investment Requirements Will Increase to $1.8 Million!
The Department of Homeland Security has recommended and it is expected that Congress will increase the minimum investment amount requirements for EB-5 Investors from the current $1 Million to $1.8 Million and for Regional Center and Targeted Employment Areas (TEA’s) from $500,000 to $800,000 later this year. 

As a result, new EB-5 Investor’s must make their investment and have their EB-5 cases filed with the USCIS before the new increased investment amounts take effect in the Fall.