Status After Arrival
Upon arriving in the United States with an approved I-130 petition, individuals have specific pathways to obtain legal status. The pivotal steps are marked by Adjustment of Status and obtaining Conditional Permanent Residency where applicable.
Adjustment of Status
Adjustment of Status (AOS) is how an individual transitions from holding a non-immigrant visa to becoming a lawful permanent resident without returning to their home country to complete visa processing. Individuals with an approved I-130 petition must file Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. Numerous criteria and documentation requirements must be available, including an affidavit of support, evidence of an eligible visa classification, and an immigrant visa number.
Conditional Permanent Residency
Conditional Permanent Residency is granted to individuals who obtain their green card through marriage to a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, provided the marriage was less than two years old at the time of approval. These individuals receive a green card valid for two years. They must file Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, within 90 days before their conditional green card expires to maintain their permanent residency status. Failure to file before the deadline may result in resident status loss and the initiation of removal proceedings.
Documentation for Form I-751 must include evidence that the marriage is bona fide, such as joint financial statements, lease or mortgage documents in both names and birth certificates of children born to the couple, among other documents.