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How do I start the process of permanent residency in US?

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USA Immigration

I’m a Canadian citizen and have been married to an American for the past 3 yrs. We have been living, for the past 6 months in both the US and in Canada. I need to start the process of permanent residency in the US, but I don’t know where to begin. Can you help?

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  1. Fadi Minawi on May 07, 2014 Reply

    Hello,

    There are two ways to have your spouse sponsor you to the US – the first and default way of doing things is through Consular processing:

    To begin the sponsorship process, the U.S. Lawful Permanent Resident family member will need to mail a visa petition on USCIS Form I-130, along with accompanying documents, to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The LRP must prove the family relationship is real.

    Once USCIS receives the petition, the officers will consider whether to approve or deny the request.

    If approved, the case file will be forwarded to the National Visa Center for further processing.

    If denied, it is possible for the petitioner to file a new petition after determining what changes need to be made to encourage an approval.

    Upon approval, USCIS will forward the immigrant’s case file to the National Visa Center (NVC) for further processing.

    If the petition has been approved, and a visa has become available, the immigrant would then submit an application for permanent residence. This is usually done by applying for an immigrant visa at a U.S. consulate outside the United States, and then once in the states, the immigrant would apply for the Green Card.

    During the ensuing process, called “consular processing”, the immigrant will be required to fill out various forms, provide documents and take part in a medical examination.

    The second method is applicable only if you are physically in the US and that is to file the I-130 along with an “adjustment of status” from within the US. This would have the entire application be adjudicated in the US.

    At the end, filing for either of these methods can have their complications. For this reason, it is highly advisable to seek the assistance of a professional.

    Fadi

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