Adjustment Of Status and Naturalization
Adjustment of Status is the procedure used to change from a nonimmigrant status to an immigrant status without leaving the U.S. Those who adjust status become a lawful U.S. Permanent Resident.
Before applying for adjustment of status, there are two aspects which the alien must understand.
- The alien who entered the United States must do so legally, after having been inspected, admitted, or paroled into the country. An alien who entered the United States without inspection , is not eligible for adjustment and must pursue visa processing at a consulate, even if his status is an “immediate relative” of a U.S. citizen.
- Any past violation of U.S. immigration status , including an overstay or unauthorized employment, may disqualify most aliens from adjustment of status.
The process of applying for permanent residence after marriage can be complicated, and mistakes can often result in legal status problems and even deportation.
If you have held your green card for 5 years, or 3 years while married to a U.S. citizen, you may be eligible to apply for U.S. citizenship.