Additional Costs and Considerations
When applying for an adjustment of status via Form I-485, applicants encounter various fees beyond the base filing charge. It’s crucial to budget for these additional costs to ensure a smooth application process.
Lawyer and Consultant Fees
Legal representation is often sought during the adjustment of status process. Attorney fees vary widely based on the complexity of the case, geographic location, and the attorney’s expertise. Lawyer fees might range from a few thousand dollars up to several thousand. Some lawyers charge a flat fee for the entire process, while others may bill hourly. Applicants should also consider the possibility of costs arising from the need for any legal consultations, even if they do not retain a lawyer for the full process. It’s advisable to obtain quotes from multiple legal professionals to assess the expected cost.
Possible Additional Charges
Applicants should be mindful of the potential for additional fees, such as:
- Biometrics Fee: Required for most applicants, adding $85 to the total cost.
- Translation Services: Necessary for documents not in English, with fees depending on the document’s length and language complexity.
- Document Fees: Acquisition of certain documents, like birth certificates or police clearances from abroad, may carry their own charges.
- Travel Expenses: If an applicant needs to travel to attend an interview or biometrics appointment, they must account for transportation and lodging expenses.
- Postage and Photocopying: Shipping forms, evidence, and other materials can accumulate small but notable expenses.
Applicants may encounter various other fees depending on their unique circumstances or any additional forms that may be required in conjunction with their I-485 application. They must review current USCIS guidelines, as fees can be updated regularly.