Experienced Immigration Attorney in San Jose, CA, Helping Clients Removing Conditions of Residence
When an immigrant comes to America and petitions for a green card or lawful permanent residence, the USCIS will typically issue the foreign national with conditional residence while the application is processed. You are allowed up to two years as a conditional resident in the U.S. If proper steps are not taken by the end of those two years, the U.S. may begin deportation proceedings to have you removed from the country.
Nearing the end of the two years of conditional residence, you are encouraged to file for an adjustment of status with the USCIS form I-751. This form is a petition to remove conditions of residence in hopes that, upon receiving and approving the USCIS form, the U.S. government will then make you a lawful permanent resident within its borders. You would then become a green card holder with fewer limitations to your rights and your length of stay.
While it is not necessary to hire the legal services of professional immigration attorneys to assist you with compiling and filing the USCIS form I-751, such representation could help ensure that you have all the proper documentation and that your right to residence is necessarily secure.
People come to America from all over the world. Chad, Chile, China, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kiribati, Korea (whether that be South Korea or North Korea), Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands, San Marino, Sao Tome, and so forth. They came here seeking the promise of a new life and bright new opportunities. As a nation of immigrants, we should be happy to have them. However, our laws are such that if proper forms are not filed and thusly approved by the necessary government officials, the immigrants who make up our communities could face removal proceedings and be deported shortly thereafter.
To ensure that this doesn’t happen to you or the people you love, it is absolutely essential that you take the time to fill out the USCIS form and all required supporting documents. While the ‘I-751’ may sound like lawyer talk as it is a jumble of numbers and letters, it is, in fact, directly related to the primary immigration issue of deportations and residency rights, something that affects all immigrants in this country.
At the California law firm of Yew Immigration Law Group, you will be able to speak to an experienced immigration attorney who can provide guidance as you attempt to remove the conditions of residence and become a permanent resident in the U.S. The attorney-client relationship is a confidential relationship, so you may trust that any sensitive or confidential information that you share with your immigration lawyer will not be released unless you provide consent. Our law office will help you secure a green card and provide other available services in immigration law should you need them. To schedule a consultation with our legal team, please contact us at (408) 645-6395.
Why Are Some I-751 Petitions Denied by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services?
Typically, the most common reason for a denial would be if the USCIS doubts that the union between a conditional resident and their U.S. citizen spouse is not a bona fide marriage. There have been and will continue to be examples of marriage fraud, where an immigrant and a U.S. citizen or LPR use a marital union to help the foreign national through the immigration process. The U.S. government is on the lookout for fraudulent marriages, though, and if they detect that there is anything suspicious about your union, they may deny your I-751 petition.
The other top reason is that someone filed their USCIS form I-751 late. Conditional residents have two years but must petition to remove conditions of residence before those two years are up. There is a very slim window to do this. You must submit form I-751 sometime 90 days before the two-year period is up. Filing too early doesn’t work either, as the USCIS will send back an early form I-751 without further review. It is possible to file an I-751 petition to remove conditions of residence after the deadline under certain circumstances, such as experiences of extreme hardship, financial problems, hospitalization, or active-duty military deployments. An immigration attorney at our law office could be able to lend assistance in obtaining a waiver for a late submission.
If the immigrant has amassed a criminal record in their time since coming to the United States, or if past criminal history has recently come to light since they originally immigrated, then they may also be denied.
If your case is denied by the USCIS, the denial letter will also include a Notice to Appear in court for removal proceedings. At this point, you will have the chance to argue your case before an immigration judge (we recommend doing so only with professional legal representation).
While marriage fraud and criminal convictions may still ultimately result in going forward with deportation proceedings, a late filing may possibly be forgiven. We recommend using a certified mail courier service for sending in form I-751. In case it arrives late, you may still be able to prove in good faith that you did send it in on time.
Are There Different Requirements for Those Who File Jointly vs. Filing Alone?
Right or wrong, the USCIS makes the general assumption that most people filing form I-751 are either married to a United States citizen or have some other familial relationship that ties them to American residency. However, some marriages end, some partners become abusive and impossible to live with, and some family members pass away. An immigrant should not be punished by the government because fate was cruel to them in these ways.
If you’re not filing jointly, you can seek a waiver for the joint filing requirement.
You must include any of the following applicable documents with your waiver request:
- Death certificate.
- Divorce certificate.
- Proof of abuse, whether that be photographic evidence, police reports, confessions, etc., would clearly establish why you would not want to file a joint petition.
- And evidence that you will suffer ‘extreme hardship’ if you are deported from the U.S. back to your country of origin.
‘Extreme hardship’ can be difficult to establish, as it requires a bit of storytelling in order to convince officials reviewing your case details that you are indeed in major and unusual danger. An experienced immigration attorney can assist in building your case.
What Are the Benefits of Establishing an Attorney-Client Relationship for a Petition to Remove Conditions of Residence?
While it is true that you are not required to hire an immigration lawyer to represent you in this type of case, and you may be tempted to avoid the need to pay legal fees, doing so can be incredibly beneficial to you. Not only does hiring an experienced immigration attorney reduce stress, but professional legal services provided by immigration attorneys can also improve your chances of a successful filing of a Form I-751 petition to remove conditions of residence.
If you hire our law office for your legal needs, we will help in the gathering of all important documents and ensure that no lawyer issue has gone overlooked. Our staff can assist you with the confusing differences between a joint petition and filing separately as well as petitioning for other useful waivers. If the USCIS has reason to suspect a fraudulent marriage, we can gather evidence, such as your children’s birth certificates, to help prove that your marriage is bona fide.
If for whatever reason, your filing is late, we can lend assistance there, too. And if you’ve faced workplace discrimination, community violence, or domestic abuse, there may be options for your attorney to explore as well.
The Form I-751 petition has its own filing fee, so we understand the temptation of wanting to avoid an attorney fee, too. But this is your green card we’re talking about. This is your right to remain and reside in the United States. Do not put this opportunity up for chance.
Contact Our Law Firm to Speak to an I-751 Lawyer
The immigration attorney of Yew Immigration Law Group has decades of experience providing legal care to clients in need all around California. Though our law office is based out of San Jose, we have previously served clients in San Francisco, San Diego, Oakland, Berkeley, and Los Angeles County.
If you’re looking to file Form I-751: petition to remove conditions of residence, we can certainly help you through the process. To discuss your unique case details, schedule a confidential consultation with our law office by giving us a call at (408) 645-6395.