The following guide is intended for applicants of adjustment of status in the United States.
Adjustment of status is the process that you can use to apply for lawful permanent resident status (also known as applying for a Green Card) when you are present in the United States. This means that you may get a Green Card without having to return to your home country to complete visa processing.
The eligibility requirements for adjustment of status vary depending on the immigrant category you are applying under. The first step in the adjustment of status process is to determine if you fit into a specific category.
Most people who apply for a Green Card will need to complete at least two forms--an immigrant petition and a Green Card application. Normally you need a petitioning sponsor to apply for you, although you may be eligible to file for yourself in some cases. Once you have determined that you are eligible to file for adjustment of status and that you have a visa available, you may begin the process of applying.
When USCIS makes a decision on your application, they will send you a written decision notice. If your application is approved, you will receive an approval notice first and then receive your actual Permanent Resident Card (Green Card) later. If your application is denied, the decision notice will tell you the reason(s) why your application is denied and whether you may appeal the decision. Generally, you cannot appeal the decision to deny an adjustment of status application but you may be eligible to file a motion to reopen or reconsider.
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