U.S. immigration laws are complicated, so it is not surprising that determining immigration status in Bolingbrook can be a challenging process. For a thorough determination, it is necessary to review an individual’s documentation, immigration history, family connections, and actions taken with respect to federal agencies.
Immigration lawyers in Bolingbrook are familiar with the application of immigration laws, regulations, and policies and could assist with a status inquiry. An attorney could also help with efforts to change or update immigration status.
Types of Immigration Status
Not only are many people in Bolingbrook unaware of their immigration status, they also do not know the options recognized by the U.S. government. Individuals may be considered to be:
- U.S. citizens
- Lawful permanent residents
- Conditional permanent residents
- Non-immigrants with a temporary visa
- Individuals granted protected status temporarily (such as asylum/pending asylum cases)
Some types of statuses are legal status, such as a lawful permanent resident or a visitor on a temporary visa. If a temporary visitor applies for asylum, while the case is pending, that individual is allowed to remain in the country, but does not gain separate have legal status. Nevertheless, such individuals may still be able to apply for a work permit.
Key Questions in Determining Immigration Status
Some people do not realize that they have certain legal status, such as citizenship. Some of the first questions to ask when attempting to determine immigration status in Bolingbrook is where that person was born and whether the parents were citizens. Individuals born in certain U.S. territories may be citizens, and children of citizens may derive citizenship through parental naturalization depending on the circumstances.
Other critical questions when ascertaining immigration status concern visas. If the individual at issue entered with a visa, it is important to determine what type of visa, whether that individual complied with the terms, and whether the visa remains in force or has expired. Some individuals may be in the process of applying for a visa such as a U visa available to the victims of crimes or a T visa for victims of labor or sex trafficking.
Changes in Immigration Status
A person’s immigration status can change quickly. People who entered the U.S. legally with a temporary work or student visa may find their status changed to undocumented if they remain in the U.S. after the visa has expired. In such cases, the status changes with no affirmative action on the part of the visa holders.
In other cases, people may take steps to change their immigration status. Someone with conditional permanent residence status, for instance, may file a petition to remove the conditions of residence (Form I-751 or I-829) after fulfilling the requirements. Since conditional permanent residents receive a green card valid for only two years, if they fail to take the necessary steps to have the condition removed, they lose their legal resident status and become undocumented.
Individuals who are in the U.S. may apply to adjust their status to lawful permanent resident. Eligibility requirements vary depending on the situation.
More Information About Determining Immigration Status in Bolingbrook
Your immigration status makes a tremendous difference in the opportunities open to you on a daily basis. It is crucial for everyone in Bolingbrook to understand their immigration status and the steps they could take to change that status if necessary.
An experienced immigration lawyer could assist with determining immigration status in Bolingbrook as well as exploring the available options for changing or adjusting status. For a consultation to learn more, call today.