If you are an immigrant located in Florida who is trying to obtain a green card, you must adjust your status. You should know what this means and what steps you need to take.
Understanding adjustment of status
When you plan to apply for a green card, the process is called adjustment of status (AOS). This gives you the ability to stay in the United States while your application is processed regardless of whether your visa expires. It’s also possible to apply for your green card while outside of the country, known as consular processing. If you determine that adjustment of status is the better option for you, there are certain steps you should take.
Steps for adjustment of status
First, you should determine whether you’re eligible to apply for a green card and which immigrant category fits your situation. Most people applying need to complete no fewer than two forms: their immigrant petition and green card application. If someone is sponsoring you, that person will have to file for you.
You must file Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. Most categories require an approved immigration petition before you can file that form. Depending on your status, you might be able to file both documents together.
Check your visa availability online at the Department of State website. You must first have a visa for your immigrant category before filing Form I-485. You should also begin to receive mail for various information such as your signature, photo and fingerprints. These biometrics are used to perform background and security checks.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) may require you to come in for an interview to answer questions under oath. You should receive notice of the date, time and location if this applies to you. Bring the originals of all documents included with Form I-485 to your interview.
You might be asked for more evidence and can check your status online before receiving a decision.