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Patrick Long Law Firm, PC.

US citizens who are 21 years of age or older can petition for their parent’s spouse to get a green card if the parent married the spouse before the child turned 18.  If no other options exist and deportation proceedings are ongoing, then a child younger than 21 may qualify you for cancellation of removal, which is a special way of getting a green card through the immigration court.

I Am A US Permanent Resident. May I Apply For A Green Card For My Brother?

Only a US citizen can petition for their brother or sister.

How Do I Begin The Green Card Process?

The process of obtaining a green card should begin with an attorney. Most people within the US who are applying for a green card already have a visa or some kind of lawful status in the US and therefore might qualify to have their status adjusted without leaving the country.

For an individual who is eligible to file for adjustment status, the first step will be for their relative who is petitioning for them to file Form I-130. In essence, this notifies immigration that they seek to petition for their relative and will file Form I-485, which is the actual application for adjustment status. Once those forms are filed, the individual will be able to obtain a work permit. Someone who does not have proof of valid admission to the US will have to return to their home country and have an interview. There are some exceptions that might apply to someone who has fears that they might be endangered by the government or a gang in their home country. If that is the case, the individual may request that the interview be held in a different country.

If someone has temporary protected status (TPS), which is obtained when a person enters the US illegally but ends up obtaining a work permit in the US, then the process of obtaining a green card can be more complicated. In Massachusetts, TPS counts as an admission and qualifies someone to adjust status. In most other states, it does not, and they will have to find a work-around. For example, they might have to obtain advance parole status in order to get around the fact that they did not enter the US legally. This type of status grants permission for the individual to travel and reenter the US. If a person with TPS travels with advance parole and reenters the US using the advance parole status, then that will be considered a valid admission to the US. This is based on case law rather than the statute, which means it could change as new cases come down.

Anyone who has TPS and plans on leaving the country should speak to an attorney before doing anything, because if they leave the country in the wrong way, then they may be barred from returning. Depending on the circumstances, it may also trigger a bar to re-entry. If someone had unlawful presence in the US for 180 days or more before leaving the US, then they will be barred from entering or obtaining any kind of status in the US for three years. If someone had unlawful presence in the US for one year or more before leaving the US, then they will be barred from entering or obtaining any kind of status in the US for 10 years. This is why it is so important to speak with an attorney when dealing with these matters and considering travel outside of the US.

If someone does not want to leave the US but wants to obtain status in the US that will allow them to obtain a green card, then they might be able to apply for a waiver. The standard for qualifying is extreme hardship to a qualifying US citizen or permanent resident family member. If the individual has a criminal record that makes them inadmissible, then they will need to apply for a different waiver, and will be required to leave the US and have it adjudicated while they are outside of the US. What kind of crimes make someone inadmissible is a complicated question where the law is constantly changing.

Having a criminal record is a problem for immigration purposes, but speaking with an attorney can be helpful in finding a solution. There are some crimes that qualify for waivers and some that do not. The only waiver that can be processed while an individual is still in the US is for unlawful presence. If eligible, it would be beneficial for the individual to apply for this waiver while they are in the US so that they do not have to spend very much time out of the US and will be allowed back into the US after the interview. This usually makes the difference between spending a month out of the US versus several years.

For more information on Petitioning For A Relative’s Green Card, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling  (617) 718-5550  today.

Patrick Long Law Firm, PC.

Call Now For An Initial Case Evaluation
(617) 718-5550

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