Showing posts tagged green card

New Proposed Immigration Policy from the Obama Administration. For a free initial consultation, please call us at 718-263-5999 or email Evening and weekend appointments available. Visit our website here.


On Friday, January 6, 2012, the Obama administration proposed a new rule that would reduce the time that illegal immigrants are apart from their U.S. citizen family members.

Under the current rule, illegal immigrants must leave the U.S. before they can ask the government to waive the 3 or 10 year ban before they can legally come back to the U.S. They would have to apply for a visa in their home country. The proposed rule would change this by reducing the time they are out of the U.S. to as little as a few days or a few months. USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas states that the policy will “minimize the extent to which bureaucratic delays separate Americans from their families.”


Eligibility and Steps for Consular Processing

Consular processing is a process where a beneficiary of an approved immigration petition applies for an immigrant visa at a U.S. consulate overseas in order to travel to the U.S. and obtain a green card. The beneficiary must also have an immigrant visa number to be eligible to apply.

Consular processing is different from an adjustment of status. An adjustment of status to a permanent resident is applied by an eligible person already living in the U.S. In this case, the beneficiary does not need to return to his or her home country to apply for residency.

Other differences between consular processing and an adjustment of status include the following:

• The time frame to receive consular processing is shorter than an adjustment of status

• Consular processing needs to be processed at the applicant’s home country

• An applicant of consular processing does have benefits of a work permit or advance parole. However, an applicant of an adjustment of status does

• An applicant of consular processing must have an interview and medical exam in his or her home country. An applicant of an adjustment of status must take fingerprints and a physical exam in the U.S.

Steps to Consular Processing

1. Determine Your Basis to Immigrate

There are several ways to receive a green card, such as through asylum status or a petitioner that is a green card holder or U.S. citizen. The first step is to determine the method of obtaining your green card.

2. File an Immigrant Petition

For family-based immigration, the U.S. citizen or permanent resident spouse or relative will act as the petitioner on your behalf. The petitioner will need to file a Form I-130 for you.

For employment-based immigration, the U.S. employer will need to file a Form I-140 for you. Entrepreneurs can also petition for themselves by filing Form I-526. However, the entrepreneur must have plans on investing a significant amount of money into a U.S. based business venture.

3. Wait for a Decision on Your Petition

You will receive a notification letter by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). If your petition is denied, the letter will outline reasons for the denial and rights to an appeal. If the petition is approved and you choose to participate in consular processing, the USCIS will send the approved petition to the Department of State’s National Visa Center (NVC) to wait for an immigrant visa number.

4. Wait for Notification from the National Visa Center

The NVC will send a letter to the petitioner and beneficiary when the approved petition is received and when an immigration visa number will soon become available. They also notify the petitioner and beneficiary of processing fees and when documents are needed for submission.

5. Go to Your Appointment

The consular office will schedule an interview with you when a visa is available or when your priority date is current, as well as finish the processing of your case. The consular office will decide to either deny or approve your visa. It is important to note that, if at any time during this process there are changes in your information or current situation, you must notify the NVC. Such examples include a change in address or marital status.

6. After Your Visa is Granted

When you are approved for a visa, you will receive an informational packet from the consular office that you should not open. When you arrive to the U.S. at the port of entry, hand over your packet to the Customs and Border Protection officer. You will be inspected and admitted into the U.S. as a permanent resident.

7. Receive Your Green Card

You will receive your green card in the mail within 30 days of your arrival into the U.S. If you do not receive your green card within the allotted time, please contact the USCIS.


Cancellation of Removal Information

Cancellation of Removal is a form of relief for a person in a deportation case and is available to both permanent residents and nonpermanent residents. An illegal immigrant can apply for Cancellation of Removal if he or she meets the following requirements:

• Applicant must have been present in the U.S. for at least ten years

• Applicant has good moral character

• Applicant must have a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse, child or parent who would suffer from the applicant’s removal

However, if you are a permanent resident in removal proceedings, you are eligible for Cancellation of Removal if you have been present in the U.S. for seven years and were not arrested and convicted of any crimes within the first five years of continuously living in the U.S.

Once you have determined eligibility for Cancellation of Removal, an Immigration Judge will also look at other factors to either grant or deny a petition for Cancellation of Removal. These factors include:

• Whether you have served the U.S. Armed Forces

• Whether you own assets, such as land, a house or a business

• Your value to the community

• Your history in legal employment in the U.S.

• Evidence that you are restoring your life if you have committed a crime

• The reason(s) you are being deported and the circumstances surrounding your deportation

• Instances where you failed to comply with Immigration Laws

If the Immigration Judge decides to cancel the removal proceedings, an alien will be granted legal permanent residence.

What can be done to strengthen a Cancellation of Removal case?

If you think you may be in risk of deportation or removal proceedings in the future, it is wise to establish your credibility with the community and prepare examples that show you are trying to improve your life. For example, you can join a church to demonstrate community involvement or learn English to illustrate that you are attempting to advance yourself.

A person can only petition for Cancellation of Removal once. Therefore, applicants should seek the consultation and assistance of an experienced Immigration Attorney. At Gehi & Associates, we employ five highly skilled attorneys and ten paralegal to help you defend your deportation case. We have been serving the community for almost 15 years and are well-known for taking on complex and difficult immigration cases. For a free personal initial consultation, contact 718-263-5999 or .

Basics of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

Under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), a battered spouse, child or parent of a U.S. citizen or green card holder can apply for lawful permanent status without the abuser’s knowledge. Both male and females are eligible. 

Generally, a U.S. citizen or permanent resident would petition for a green card for the spouse, child or parent and may even need to attend the interview with the beneficiary. In addition, if you become a legal permanent resident less than two years of your marriage, you normally would be granted a conditional green card. Consequently, your spouse would need to petition your adjustment to full permanent resident. 

These are just a few ways in which an abuser can control, manipulate, intimidate, and isolate a spouse. For example, an abuser may threaten his or her spouse with deportation if the spouse does not comply with the abuser’s demands. 

With the passing of VAWA, a person experiencing domestic violence can file an immigrant visa petition without the knowledge, involvement or assistance of the abuser. 

There are three forms of protection under VAWA: 

1) WAVA self-petition 

You can self-petition for a green card if you are abused by: 

  • Your spouse who is a U.S. citizen or green card holder
  • Your parent(s) or step-parent(s) who is/are a U.S citizen or green card holder
  • Your son or daughter who is a U.S. citizen (not legal permanent resident)
  • Or if your child is abused by your spouse
2) Battered spouse or child waiver 

If you obtained conditional permanent residence and are abused by your spouse who is a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident, you can petition for a visa without your spouse. In some instances, a child can also petition without a mother or father. 

3) VAWA cancellation of removal 

If you are in removal proceedings, also known as deportation proceedings, and are abused by your spouse who is a U.S. citizen or green card holder or have a child that is abused by that spouse, you may be eligible for this form of relief. 

Although you may be eligible for one or more of these forms of relief under VAWA, it is highly recommended that you seek the consultation and assistance of an immigration attorney before petitioning for a type of immigration status. An attorney will determine eligibility and help you with the procedure. Gehi & Associates has been serving the community for almost 15 years and has experience in handling complex immigration cases. For more information on how we can assist you, please contact 718-263-5999 or email We offer a free personal initial consultation.

Client’s Case Is Approved After a Request For Evidence

A client filed a Petition to Remove the Conditions of Residence but received a Request for Evidence (RFE) by the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS) requesting additional documents. The client retained Gehi & Associates to assist with this matter. Gehi & Associates responded to the RFE in a timely manner and resubmitted all necessary documents. The case was approved in approximately a month, and the client received his permanent green card. 

Attorney Advertisement. Gehi & Associates does not offer any guarantee of case results. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.


Client Receives Green Card Regardless of Harsh Claims

A client who is a native of Jamaica received his green card despite claims by an adjudications officer that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has no record of his lawful entry into the U.S., even though the client has his original I-94, visa and stamped passport. Gehi & Associates helped with the paperwork and accompanied the client to the adjustment interview where we submitted the I-94 and copies of the visa and passport. In a very short while, the client obtained his green card and is now living happily with his wife.

Attorney Advertisement. Gehi & Associates does not offer any guarantee of case results. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.

Cancellation of Removal with Attorney Naresh Gehi