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

Tell a friend about this page

Learn More About:

This Week's Immigration News 
By Immigration Attorney Caroly Pedersen

Add this page to your favorites.

Add this page to your favorites.
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: My Parents brought me to America in 2002 as visitors and then my mom got a job and we ended up staying here for all these years and our visas expired. I've been married to my U.S. Citizen wife for a few months now and will be getting my Green Card soon. So I want to know if once I get my Residency, can I sponsor my parents right away for their Green Cards and work permits. How long will the process take? How long will it be for them to get their work permits and Green Card? Thanks.
Answer: Unfortunately, only U.S. Citizens can sponsor their Parents for Residency. Since you will be obtaining your Green Card through your U.S. Citizen Spouse, you will be eligible to apply for early Naturalization in two years and nine months from the date you receive your U.S. Residency, as long as you and your wife continue to be living together as a married couple. Once you file for your Naturalization, it takes about 4-5 months to become a U.S. Citizen. After that you can sponsor both of your parents (separately). From the time of filing the Residency packages, your parents should receive their Work Permits within about 90 days and their Green Cards within 4-6 months. Let us know if we can assist you in this process.
EB-5 Investor Visa Minimum Capital Requirements 
May Increase As Early As September 2015
The EB-5 Visa allows foreign investors to invest capital in their own U.S. business or a business center approved by the USCIS and obtain Residency (a Green Card) for themselves and their family. But with the EB-5 Investor Visa program set to expire next month on September 30th, Congress has recently been very busy rewriting requirements for eligibility, including increasing 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. 

Recently a new proposal was introduced to increase the capital investment to $2 Million dollars! What’s worse is that the new changes could go into effect very quickly in the coming days, leaving only a very short period of 30 days or less for new EB-5 investors to get into the program under the existing $500,000 minimum investment amount before the planned increase. 
Can Conservatives Really Put An End Immigrant Birthright Citizenship?
In 1868, following the bitterly fought Civil War, Republicans of President Abraham Lincoln’s party ratified the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, which granted citizenship to “all persons born or naturalized in the United States,” which included former slaves recently freed. So it is now a very strange twist of history, that the same Republican party seems hell-bent on ending the rights of all children born on U.S. soil to automatically obtain U.S. Citizenship at birth, regardless of the immigration status or citizenship of the child’s parents. 

But with all this talk by Trump and other Republicans about abolishing the 14th Amendment, it is really possible for any one political party to end the right, or is it all just political rhetoric aimed at stirring up votes from the mainly white, native born Americans (whose families were all once immigrants themselves)?
Immigration How To:
How Do I Change My Address with the USCIS When I Move?
To meet this requirement, not only will investor’s be required to make the full $500,000 investment, but additionally to provide extensive documentation to prove the source of their investment funds and complete eligibility for the Residency visa. Investors who want to qualify under the current $500,000 capital requirement are advised not to delay, or they may miss the deadline. 
The reality is, that putting an end to Birthright Citizenship would be very complicated and require amending the U.S. Constitution. Amending the Constitution requires a vote of two thirds of both the House and Senate of Congress and then, approval (ratification) by three fourths of the state legislatures. This is a mighty task indeed and likely impossible. So as you listen to all the bombastic speeches from Trump and other anti-immigrant conservatives, remember, its one thing to say it and another to actually do it and frankly, these politicians know its not possible, but they are just saying what they think their voters want to hear.

Read More about the Birthright Citizenship issue:

Read the Proposed Law to abolish Birthright Citizenship:
Birthright Citizenship Act of 2015
Question: For marriage case, does it actually affect or matter how long a couple has been dating prior to filling the petition? 
Answer: For adjustment of status cases in the U.S., theoretically and legally, no, however, the length of time you have been dating before marriage to a U.S. Citizen or Resident helps the USCIS officer determine whether or not they believe the marriage is real, for love, in conjunction with the other evidence of a real marriage which is required to be submitted at the interview. 
For example, if you have been dating for 4 months, then marry and the immigration case is filed, as long as the case is filed properly, you have all the requisite marital documents at your interview and are able to answer the officer’s questions in a genuine way, then the 4 month period of dating, should be not be an issue. Contrast this with dating a year or more, but improperly filing the case and failing to provide the requisite marital documentation to the officer at the interview, which would likely result in a couple being separated and questioned about the legitimacy of their marriage, long delays in processing and in Green Card approval. It’s really all about how well the case is filed and how well the couple is prepared.

However, the length of dating time often has more importance for consular officers, when the foreign national spouse is processing abroad through a U.S. Consulate, rather than adjusting status in the U.S.. There is always a higher risk of denial for all marriage case, especially those where the couple had not been dating long before marriage. And the tough reality is that a denial at a U.S. Consulate can’t be appealed, so the best case must always be prepare and submitted to prove eligibility rather than to risk denial. Let us know if you’d like us to represent you in your residency case.
Send USCIS Applications and Correspondence by U.S. Express Mail for easy tracking and delivery confirmation
Immigration applications and any follow-up correspondence with the USCIS are such important matters, that you should take the additional step of sending these documents to the USCIS by a safe, quick method, which allows you to verify the date and time of delivery to the USCIS. This is especially critical when you have received a Request For Additional Evidence from the USCIS and must provide the requested documentation by a specified deadline. Many applicants do not know that if their response sent to the USCIS is postmarked before the deadline date, but is actually delivered and received by the USCIS after that date, the case is likely to be denied. 
Not only is this a tragedy for the beneficiary of the immigration application, but in such instances, all the USCIS filing fees are lost, which in some cases can be thousands of dollars. Certified Mail is not delivered quickly and cannot be tracked online and other private courier services like Fed-ex cannot be delivered to the regular USCIS P.O. box address. 

So, since the USCIS is a government agency, like the U.S. Express Mail (U.S. Postal Service) The safest way to send applications/documents and to safeguard against the unfortunate situation above is to use the U.S. Express Mail next day service. The cost is about $15.00 and well worth it. You will receive a tracking# so you can go online and confirm delivery. Be sure to send any responses requested by the USCIS at least one week or more before the deadline. Also, make a copy of everything you send to the USCIS including the initial application, supporting documents, Money Order and all follow-up responses before sending to the USCIS and never send originals! Good luck!
Helpful Immigration Tips You Can Use
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. 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. 
Tips on Changing Your Address with the USCIS When You Move 
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!