While the K-3 and K-4 visa offers many benefits, there are some other considerations to think about, depending on your personal situation. For example, did you know that even though an immigrant visa is immediately available when a K-3 Petition for Alien Relative reaches the Department of State, but then your spouse’s children are no longer eligible for K-3/K-4 nonimmigrant status? In that situation, the children must immigrate as lawful permanent residents. If the K-4 visa holder does not have an approved Petition for Alien Relative at the Department of State at that time, he or she will be ineligible to immigrate with the spouse of the USC.
It is advisable that the U.S. citizen petitioner file a separate green card petition on the child’s behalf concurrently with the green card petition that is filed for the spouse. While there is no requirement that a separate application needs to be filed for the child’s petition, it is advisable if a K-4 visa is desired.
K-3 or K-4 nonimmigrant visa holders are only admitted for a 2-year period. A K-3 or K-4 nonimmigrant visa holder may apply for an extension of status in 2-year increments as long as the marriage-based green card visa petition or a corresponding application for adjustment of status or visa application is still pending adjudication. A K-4’s authorized stay automatically expires when the K3’s status expires.
Did you know that if you work for a U.S. based company, they can sponsor an employment-based Green Card for YOU?
This Green Card offers foreign nationals the privilege of living and working permanently in the United States. The employment based green card is allocated by employment type and “preference,” and each have specific requirements.
First Preference is given to persons with extraordinary ability, such as outstanding professors and researchers or managers and executives in multinational companies.
Second Preference is given to professionals with advanced degrees, persons with exceptional ability and also to exceptional professors and researchers. There is also another category for Second Preference, with a National Interest Waiver (NIW). This is available for persons with exceptional ability involved in activities that will substantially benefit the U.S. national interest or to people with advanced degrees involved in activities that will substantially benefit the U.S. national interest.
Third Preference is provided to professionals with a U.S. bachelor’s degree or a foreign equivalent. It may also be available to skilled or unskilled workers.
There are a number of specialized jobs that may allow you to get a green card based on a past or current job, such as: Afghan/Iraqi Translator, Broadcaster, International Organization Employee, Iraqi who assisted the U.S. Government, NATO-6 Nonimmigrant, Panama Canal Employee, Physician with a National Interest Waiver, and Religious Worker.
Did you know that according to 2012 data, more than half of young adults in California ages 16 to 26 were first- or second-generation immigrants? This should not come as a surprise if you consider that California is home to one-quarter of the nation’s immigrants! Although some naysayers like to denigrate immigrants as uneducated high school dropouts or worse, statistics show that recent immigrants to California include a large number of highly educated workers. Although it is important to note the wide spread of ages in the Current Population Survey data, let’s look at some of the numbers:
For Californian adults aged 25 to 65:
- 8% immigrants had a high school level education, compared to 23.3% of U.S. citizens.
- 1% of immigrants had achieved a bachelor’s level degree, as compared to 37.2% of U.S. citizen adults.
Even better, among recent immigrants aged 24 and over who arrived in California between 2005 through 2008:
- 41% had at least a bachelor’s degree!!!
Immigrants in California are attaining higher educational levels, and while many still add valuable work to the unskilled labor forces, many are helping the U.S. and California economies by joining the higher skilled workforce as well. And that is good news for all of us!
In a memorandum on Immigration, President Obama said up to 70,000 refugees may be admitted to the U.S. during the 2015 fiscal year. The President stated that this number was well justified due to humanitarian concerns and national interest.
The number of people eligible to receive refugee status is split into an uneven quota by region. The slots available to people from various regions is as follows:
- the Near East and South Asia region received the highest allocation with 33,000.
- Africa received 17,000
- the East Asia region was allocated 13,000
- the Latin American and the Caribbean region was assigned a total of 4,000 available slots
- Europe and Central Asia was allotted 1,000
- the “Unallocated Reserve” has 2,000 slots, to be allocated as needed
The State Department can allocate the 2,000 unallocated refugee numbers to another region if the need is warranted but only after notification to the Judiciary Committees of the Congress.
Numbers of Central American Refugees Allowed into the United States is Decreased, but President Obama wants to Promote the Development of New, Safer Options for Those in Need
International and United States immigration law states that refugee status “may be granted to people who have been persecuted or fear they will be persecuted on account of race, religion, nationality, and/or membership in a particular social group or political opinion.” The freedoms and opportunities the U.S. offers has made America the country of choice for many refugees. The Presidential 2015 fiscal year memorandum stated that El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras are eligible to be considered refugees “for the purpose of admission to the United States within their countries of nationality or habitual residence.” These countries, known as the “Northern Triangle” are the only Latin American countries, along with Cuba, to be part of the list. However, President Obama also noted in the memo that the number of 2015 allotments for refugees from South America was being decreased to 4000, which is 1000 slots fewer than in 2014. The President did encourage the development of new programs that would allow individuals to apply for refugee status from within their own countries. This type of program was implemented successfully in countries like Haiti and Vietnam, with the goal of preventing dangerous trips to the United States. If you have questions about whether you qualify for refugee status, please call or email Your Immigration Angel today!
Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador Extended for Another 18 Months!
The Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security has extended the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) period for eligible nationals of El Salvador. The extension will increase the protected status for an additional 18 months. The extension goes into effect on March 10, 2015 through September 9, 2016.
How To Apply:
Current Salvadoran beneficiaries of TPS seeking to extend their TPS status must re-register during the 60 day period that runs from January 7, 2015 – March 9, 2015.
El Salvadoran nationals applying for TPS for the first time may only apply if he or she has resided in the United States since January 7, 2015 and have been continuously physically present since April 1, 2015.
Re-designation and 18 Month Extension for Syrian TPS Holders
The Secretary of Homeland Security has re-designated Syria for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). This means that the existing TPS designation for Syria now covers April 1, 2015 through September 30, 2016. Eligible nationals of Syria may register or re-register for TPS and remain temporarily living and working in the United States.
How to Apply
Current Syrian beneficiaries of TPS seeking extension of status must re-register during the 60 day period starting on January 5, 2015 and ending on March 6, 2015.
Syrian nationals applying for the first time may apply starting April 1, 2015. To be eligible, you need to have resided in the United States since January 5, 2015 and have had continuous physical presence in the United States since April 1, 2015.
President Obama’s immigration reform has created more immigration options for millions of undocumented individuals in the U.S. while promising to keep Americans safer.
- Parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents (of any age) who have been continuously present since 1/1/10, and who pass background checks and pay taxes, will be eligible to apply for deferred action, which will be granted for a 3-year period.
- Parents of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients are not eligible for the above relief, however the DACA program itself will be expanded. The program guidelines will be revised to eliminate the age cap, and to change the date that continuous presence must have started to 1/1/10.
- Individuals with an approved employment-based immigrant petition who are caught in the quota backlogs to file for adjustment of status will be advanced to permit them to obtain the benefits of a pending adjustment.
- New reforms also promise to aid job-creating entrepreneurs gain access legal means to enter and operate in the U.S
- To make the best use of limited ICE resources, newly outlined enforcement priorities will focus on security measures to keep suspected terrorists, convicted felons (including aggravated felonies), convicted gang members, out of the United States. Additionally, close attention will be paid to people apprehended at the border, people convicted of serious or multiple misdemeanors, and very recent entrants.
If you entered the United States “legally,” you probably came to this country with a valid nonimmigrant visa, such as a student visa, tourist visa, or temporary work visa. Some people are even allowed into the U.S. on a visa waiver or with a special pass at one of the U.S. borders. In either event, you would have been inspected by an immigration official at your point of entry and allowed into the United States. This method of entering the U.S. makes it easier for you to file for an Adjustment of Status in the U.S. Your U.S. citizen spouse can file a Petition for Alien Relative to apply for your green card.
However, did you know that even if you are now staying in the U.S. past the date of your authorized stay, , you are still eligible for a marriage based green card? A green card is still available to you even if you are “out of status” or are staying here illegally. If you have overstayed by six months or more since April 1, 1997 you may still apply but would need a waiver. It is very important to note that if you leave the country, you would be barred from returning for three or ten years, depending on the length of your unauthorized stay. Immigration law is a complicated field. Your personal immigration path may have twists and turns that you did not expect! We can help you to make your journey as smooth as possible. Contact Your Immigration Angel today for your free consultation!