The immigration laws in the U.S. are very complicated and if not followed with great care, can cause families to be torn apart and possible imprisonment. The attorneys at Kelly & Bramwell are experienced in navigating these very complicated laws in assisting clients in understanding the legal avenues that they may pursue in terms of their immigrant status in the U.S. Our attorneys have experience in navigating the legal issues in the areas mentioned below.
The immigration system in the U.S. can be divided in five great areas, four positive and one defensive, as follow:
- Family based
- Employment based
- Humanitarian relief
- Deportation relief
The system as established in the INA 1965 as amended favors family reunification over employment. It also favors sponsored immigration (with the need of a petitioner) vs non-sponsored (based in the circumstances or merits of the individual).
Family Based Immigration:
U.S. Citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents can petition for certain relatives to immigrate to the U.S. and obtain Lawful Permanent Resident status. The process varies depending on many factors, including but not limited to, the status of the petitioner, the relationship, the country of origin, whether the beneficiary is inside the U.S. or abroad, etc. Additionally, one must always remember each case is unique in its set of facts, such that no two cases are identical. We are set up to help families navigate this complicated system successfully and achieve the benefits pursued. We have considerable experience in complicated cases, including those that need waivers of inadmissibility. Typical services under this category are:
- I-129F, Petition for fiancé visa (non immigrant visa that leads to green card upon marriage
- I-130, Petition for Alien relative
- Spouses, Children, parents, & siblings of USCs
- Spouses and certain children of LPRs
- I-485, Adjustment of Status (get a green card for people qualified to do it inside the US)
- Concomitant temporary benefits:
- I-765, employment authorization
- I-131, advance parole (travel authorization)
- I-864, affidavit of support and other forms on this section
- DS-260, for those getting their green card in a consulate abroad
- Affidavit of support needed. See above
- I-601/601A, waivers of inadmissibility potentially needed either in adjustment of status or consular processes.
Employment Based Immigration:
Employers often need specific workers that are non-citizens. The law provides many avenues for businesses, institutions, churches and other enterprises to bring in those workers. Not every case is the same, and many times there are different paths to obtain the right person to fill the vacant position. Whether you are a small or medium size business, a church, a school, or any other type of employer we can help you find the best alternative that suits your needs. Typical services under this category are:
- H-1, for workers on professional positions that require at least a bachelor degree. This is a dual intent visa
- H-2, for non-professional workers. Many subcategories based on occupation and seasonality
- O, for individuals of extraordinary ability. This is an oddity because there is an immigrant category that has the same requirements and it’s requested with an I-360
- P, for athletes, artists, and entertainers
- R, for religious workers
- F-1, for students
- B1/B2, visas for business visitors (that will not generate revenue in the U.S.) and tourists
- EB5, for wealthy investors. This is an immigrant visa. Not an employer required
This broad umbrella covers a multitude of benefits and options for non-citizens. Special Immigrant Juvenile Status is a benefit available to non-citizen children who have suffered abandonment, abuse, or neglect. This is one of the many alternatives available to very vulnerable populations. Humanitarian relief covers the spectrum ranging from asylum seekers to DACA applicants. Furthermore, it envelopes people from countries with Temporary Protected Status designation to victims of domestic violence and other violent crimes. These and many more alternatives can be available to eligible individuals. Typical services under this category include:
- Adjustment of status for refugees
- Positive Asylum applications
- Special Immigrant Juvenile Status
- VAWA applications for spouses, children, and parents of abusive USC citizens
- U visas, for law enforcement certified victims of certain violent crimes
- T visas, for victims of human trafficking
The ultimate step in the immigration ladder is the achievement of citizenship in the U.S., and qualified Lawful Permanent Residents can apply for it. The application process may appear deceptively easy, but the reality is that it is heavy with many hidden pitfalls. We encourage you to avoid unpleasant and potentially damaging surprises by seeking legal assistance that tailors to your unique situation, and evaluates all the potential variables and scenarios. In some cases, individuals can acquire or derive citizenship from their parents. This can be a complex process, but with the right help it can be successfully navigated and achieved. Typical services under this category are:
- N-400, naturalization. For eligible green card holders
- N-600, for people claiming US citizenship at birth (acquisition) or because their parents naturalized (derivation)
Studies have shown that the odds of winning your case in immigration court are over five and half times better when you have legal representation. Immigration law is widely acknowledged to be one of the most complex legal systems of the country. No one should go unrepresented in front of an Immigration Judge. Whether you are in ICE custody or non-detained, we offer representation to defend our clients against deportation.
Have immigration documents that need to be renewed? Perhaps you are here on a work-related visa and need to consult with an attorney who doesn’t represent your employer? You have questions and need to speak with an attorney who will have your best interest at heart? Maybe you are an international student with questions? Whatever the reason might be, we welcome you to schedule a consultation to visit with our attorney and receive sincere guidance and professional advice.
The attorneys at Kelly & Bramwell welcome all to come receive the assistance that they need from those experienced in navigating these complex issues in immigration law.