I applied for my Green Card, what now?

I applied for my Green Card, what now?
Letters to My Lawyer™
Dear Lawyer,
I recently applied for a green card with my spouse. I have been told that the process is taking much longer than I anticipated. I want to be able to work and help my husband with the bills but I don’t know when to expect my work permit or green card. Why will it take over a year for our case to be complete? Will the process be different for me given the changes in the law since the new president?
Please help,
Anxiously Impatient

Dear Anxiously Impatient:
Unfortunately, there has been an increase in the length of time it takes to resolve immigration cases due primarily to how cases are being processed under the new administration. USCIS now requires interviews in certain categories, such as business/employment based green card applications. This has resulted in more than 250,000 additional interviews annually. Without an increase in human resources, the result is a significant delay in the processing of all other applications, especially those requiring interviews, such as spousal petitions and naturalizations.
USCIS publishes case processing times on their website and provides a guideline range as to how long it will take for different applications to be adjudicated. To determine how long it will take for your case, based on the Field Office or Service Center processing your case, you should visit and review the published timeframes.
You should expect to receive a work permit within six months of applying for the permit but it could take anywhere between 18 -24 months to complete processing of spousal based family applications.
Other than the length of time it now takes to process applications, there are no changes to the law that will affect how your case is adjudicated. However, adjudications are stricter and immigration officers want to see more proof evidencing that the marriage is bona fide and all applicants should expect aggressive investigation of their cases, including, home visits and verification of all evidence submitted as part of the application.
You should consult an attorney to ensure that you have submitted all the required applications and to assist you with preparing for the interview and investigation portion of your case.
Sasha Watson, Esq.

Category: Editorials


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