Schwartz Posel Immigration Law Group
Phone: 678-813-1936

Atlanta Immigration Law Blog

The steps in the asylum process for asylum seekers

Asylum seekers and their families may rely on the asylum process so it is important to be familiar with the timelines and of the chronology process. The timeline of the asylum process begins with the initial application for asylum. The asylum process allows the asylum seeker to remain in the United States and to apply for permanent residency status a year after their asylum request has been granted.

In general, asylum is granted to aliens in the United States who are unable or unwilling to return to their homeland for certain reasons. Reasons that an asylum seeker may use to seek asylum in the United States include because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution in their homeland based on their race, religion, nationality, membership in a social group or political opinion. This satisfies the requirement that the asylum seeker is considered a refugee under the Immigration and Nationality Act.

A quick look at the basic legalities pertaining to citizenship

Citizenship is an important concept with significant legal implications, so it is important to understand. Becoming a citizen of the United States occurs through birth or the naturalization process. For those not born in the U.S. but seeking citizenship, it is valuable to understand citizenship basics, such as how to obtain it.

Those born to U.S. citizens are generally considered citizens. Those born in the United States or a U.S. territory are also generally considered citizens unless they are born to a foreign diplomat in the United States. The birth certificate is considered proof of citizenship and an individual's citizenship status. There can be complexities associated with a birth to U.S. citizens abroad, though, such as residency requirements, so it might be helpful for some to familiarize themselves with this process.

Navigating the adjustment of status process

Understanding the adjustment of status process can be important for those looking to adjust their immigration status. Individuals who lack lawful permanent resident status, or green card, can remain in the United States through the adjustment of status process provided they meet certain necessary criteria. Those seeking to do so should be familiar with the adjustment of status process.

The adjustment of status process involves a nonimmigrant visa holder converting to immigrant status and obtaining a green card so they can enjoy lawful permanent residence in the U.S. With few exceptions, to be eligible to seek immigrant status, individuals must be physically present in the country and have entered it legally. Eligibility to adjust status is based on the individual's basis to immigrate such as if it is family-based, employment-based, based on participation in a humanitarian program or some other special case.

Family immigration law and family visa basics

Family immigration law can be both emotional and important to families and others. That is why it is important for families in Georgia and across the nation that are interested in family immigration to understand the process, laws and resources available to them to help them with their immigration concerns.

Under United States federal law, citizens and legal permanent residents can sponsor family members for family-based immigration visas. However, there are limitations on family-based immigration visas based on the type of familial relationship. Fewer visas are available for more remote family links. The priority for family visa applications is lower the further down the list a family member appears, and visa petitions made by U.S. citizens are given higher priority than petitions made by permanent residents.

Who is eligible for a fiance visa?

The immigration process is complex and often difficult to navigate. The laws seem to be constantly changing, and it's difficult to know what how you can move forward with your specific immigration goal. If you are looking to apply for a fiancé visa, it's in your interests to learn more about what to expect from this process and how you can avoid potential complications.

There are strict eligibility requirements for those who wish to apply for a K-1 fiancé visa. Not everyone who wants to apply for one is eligible, and not all applications receive approval. If you wish to bring your fiancé into the United States from another county, the first step is to file a specific form and plan to marry within 90 days of his or her arrival in the country.

What is the asylum process?

The asylum process is important for many individuals so it is helpful for individuals seeking asylum and their families to understand the asylum process. Asylum may be requested by individuals entering the United States at a port of entry or by those already present in the United States. An asylum request may be made at an airport, seaport or border crossing or at a service center, with some exceptions, within one year of entering the country.

Changed circumstances or extraordinary circumstances can impact the length or time an individual has to apply for asylum or their ability to apply for asylum if a request for asylum has previously been made and was denied. There is a specific form for asylum that must be completed and completed fully. As is always true when considering immigration law, it is important to know what paperwork to complete and how to properly complete it to potentially increase the individual's chances of being granted asylum.

Understanding the employment visa process

When a foreign worker has an exciting employment opportunity, they may need an employment visa to pursue that opportunity which is why it is important to understand what an employment visa is and the process for obtaining an employment visa. An H-1B visa in a nonimmigrant visa that allows an employer to sponsor and foreign worker to work in this country.

To qualify, the foreign worker must work in one of the designated specialty occupations and have obtained the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree in their home country. H-1B visas are generally valid for 3 years and may be extended for up to 6 years with some exceptions. In addition, there are also important classifications and rules that may apply to children of the foreign worker so it is also helpful to be familiar with what those are.

What types of workers qualify for employment immigration visas?

Georgia businesses want to be successful financially, and sometimes they need to hire a worker from abroad. Each year in the United States, around 140,000 immigrant visas are given to those with qualifying job skills who want to live and work in the U.S. There are five employment immigration visa preferences. These preferences take into account a worker's education and skills, as well as the sector they are employed in and the position they hold.

The first preference is for workers that have extraordinary abilities in certain fields, such as sciences and the arts, among others. Outstanding researchers and multinational executives also fall under the first preference EB-1 category.

Your options if you disagree with an adjustment of status ruling

Some immigrants living in Georgia or elsewhere in the nation do not have a green card. To remain in the country as a lawful permanent resident, however, they may request an adjustment of status from the U.S. Citizenship Immigration Services. In general, a decision by the USCIS on an application for an adjustment of status cannot be appealed. However, applicants may be able to move the court to either reopen or reconsider the case. It is important to understand what these two terms mean, so that those who find themselves in this situation can make an informed decision.

A motion to reopen involves a review of the decision based on new facts. These facts must not have been included in the denied application. In addition, the new facts must be relevant to the specific issues detailed in the motion.

Things to know about the visa process

If you plan on temporarily residing in Georgia or somewhere else in the United States under a visa status, you will have a lot of paperwork to complete and may have several challenges to overcome, as well. At some point, you'll have to attend an interview. If you are applying for a non-immigrant visa, you may have to establish home ties, meaning convince immigration officials that you have reason to return to your home country.

So many legal obstacles can arise when you apply for or obtain a visa. Even after you acquire a visa, you can still get into trouble -- for instance, if you stay in the United States after your visa's expiration date without taking necessary steps to renew it. That's why it's always a good idea to stay closely connected to someone well-versed in U.S. immigration law.

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