If you came to the United States as a crewman of a ship or plane and you are married to a US citizen, you may be able to adjust status to get a green card under certain limited conditions. The general rule is no adjustment for crewmen. However an exception to the general rule where you can get a green card while present in the United States is 245(i) adjustment of status under the LIFE Act Amendments of 2000.
One person came to the United States as a crewman working on a ship in 1996, fell in love with America and never left. A company in New York filed an application for labor certification for him in early April 2001 but he never continued to pursue the matter because the company no longer needed him because of the 2001 recession.
The person got married to a US citizen in 2002 and never adjusted under the mistaken belief that his admission on a C visa barred him from adjustment. This mistake costs this man tens of thousands of dollars in lost earnings because he rose to a high level within his company and was eventually laid him off because he could did not have a green card and could not prove that he was able to work in the United States.
The typical seaman who enters the United States on a C visa cannot adjust status. But some C visa holder can benefit under the provisions of the LIFE Amendment Act of 2000 can. For you to adjust status you must show that:
- You were the beneficiary of a qualified immigration petition or an application for labor certification that was filed on or before April 30, 2001
- You must have been present in the United States on December 21, 2000
- You are the beneficiary of the qualifying petition or petition that was filed later
- A visa is immediately available to you
- You are not inadmissible to the United States
If you are an applicant for 245(i) adjustment of status you must complete USCIS adjustment of status form I-485 and Supplement A. In addition you must pay a penalty fee of $1000.00 in addition to the regular filing fees for adjustment of status. If you are married to a US citizen and do not meet the requirement of the LIFE Act Amendment of 2000 then, you may be able to get an immigrant visa and a green card by Consular Processing.
Not knowing about your immigration options can be very costly. For more information on C visa adjustment of status or obtaining a green card, contact Goodin Law P.A. at (702) 423-2721 or visit our website.