America’s immigration system is complex, and we understand how challenging, emotional, stressful, and scary navigating those immigration laws can be. We recognize how much is at stake, and we are deeply committed to providing quality legal representation for people needing an immigration attorney. We take charge of your case, while being compassionate, caring and responsive to your needs and concerns. We will be open and transparent as to the issues and risks specific to your case, provide realistic assessments, and will not take a case unless we believe we can help our client.
We serve the immigrant community by assisting families and individuals obtain permanent residence, citizenship and naturalization, and different visas applicable to your specific situation. We will work closely with you and your family to determine the best categories and course of action under your particular circumstances. The following are some types of immigration cases in which our firm can help provide services:
- Family based immigration
- Marriage visa and green cards;
- Adjustment of Status to Legal Permanent Resident;
- Parent/Child Petitions; and
- Sibling Petitions
- Non-Immigrant visas
- Fiance(e) visa petitions;
- Tourist visas;
- Student visas
- Citizenship & Naturalization
While it is possible for an individual to file all necessary paperwork to obtain these immigration benefits themselves, the process can be more complicated than simply filling out paperwork, and a single mistake on an immigration application can be costly. An immigration attorney can help analyze your particular situation, flag and help you address areas of concern in your case, provide guidance and get you organized on items required to submit as evidence, and help you prepare and file documents that are accurate and complete. If you are considering hiring an attorney, feel free to schedule a consultation to discuss your immigration related concerns or options.
Family Based Immigration
Family based immigration is one basis for legal immigration to the United States. U.S. Citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) are allowed to sponsor certain family members for permanent residence, or “green card.” This green card permits the green card holder to live and work permanently in the U.S. All family based immigrants fall either under Immediate Relatives or Family Preference Categories. Immediate relatives include the spouses of U.S. Citizens, children (under 21 years of age) of U.S. Citizens, and the parents of U.S. citizens who are at least 21 years old. Family Preference Categories include the spouses and children of Permanent Residents, unmarried sons and daughters who are 21 years of age or older of Permanent Residents, married sons and daughters of U.S. Citizens, and Brothers and Sisters of adult U.S. Citizens.
To begin the process of bringing loved ones to the United States, the Petitioner (the U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident who files the petition) files a petition on the beneficiary’s (person on whose behalf a U.S. Citizen or Permanent Resident files a petition for such person to receive immigration benefits) behalf with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) for approval. What happens next depends upon whether the beneficiary is an Immediate Relative or falls under a Family Preference Category. Those beneficiaries who fall under the Family Preference Category will be placed on a wait list to apply for a visa until their priority date becomes current. The wait until the priority date becomes current could be years as the number of people who can immigrate each year in the various categories is limited by the law.
Depending on the current priority date listed in the Visa Bulletin, the approved petition is then forwarded to the National Visa Center (NVC) for processing. At that time, Affidavit of Support and visa application processing fees are paid, the visa application is completed, and required supporting documents are gathered. Once everything is submitted and the NVC determines the application is “documentarily qualified,” the NVC schedules the interview appointment and forwards everything to the U.S. Consulate closest to the foreign relative’s place of residence. The U.S. Consulate in the foreign relative’s place of residence will conduct an interview and will determine whether an immigrant visa will be issued. If successful, an immigrant visa will be granted that permits the foreign national to travel to the United States as a Permanent Resident.
The process described above of applying for an immigrant visa at a U.S. Consulate in a foreign country is referred to as “consular processing.” If a non-immigrant is currently in the United States, that person may be eligible to file for “adjustment of status.” To be eligible for adjustment of status, the intending immigrant must be physically present in the U.S., must have been admitted or paroled into the U.S., and must have a currently approved Petition for Alien Relative. No matter whether a person consular processes or adjusts status, both result in a legal permanent resident status.
Each case is unique, and the information provided above is general in nature and not intended to be construed as legal advice. To fully evaluate the particulars of your situation, consult an experienced immigration attorney.
A non-immigrant visa is issued to a person with permanent residence outside the United States, but who wishes to enter the U.S. on a temporary basis. Some examples of Non-immigrant visas issued are the Fiance(e) visa, tourist visa, student visas, and employment visas.
Fiance(e) Visa Petitions
K-1 Fiance(e) visa process is available for United States Citizens who want to bring their fiancé(e) to the United States for the sole purpose of marriage. To begin this process, the U.S. Citizen files a Petition for the Alien Fiance(e). If after approval of the petition and after a successful interview at the U.S. Consulate or Embassy, the Alien Fiance(e) is granted a non-immigrant visa to enter the United States. The marriage must take place to the US Citizen within 90 days of the Alien Fiance(e)’s arrival in the US.
Citizenship and Naturalization
A Lawful Permanent Resident may apply to become a citizen of the United States through a process called Naturalization if they are 18 years of age at the time of filing and have been a permanent resident for at least 5 years (3 years if naturalizing based on marriage to a U.S. Citizen spouse). The Permanent Resident must also meet other certain requirements such as continuous residence, good moral character, demonstrate the ability to read, write, and speak basic English, and have a basic understanding of U.S. History and Government. Although being a Lawful Permanent Resident affords rights to non-citizens, there are certain rights that are reserved only for U.S. Citizens. Those rights include, amongst others, the ability to participate in elections, hold public office, travel freely without fear of risking their legal permanent resident status, Petition family members to the U.S., and peace of mind that they cannot be removed from the country if certain crimes are committed.
Immigration Attorney Trang Nguyen grew up in the Seattle area. She received her B.A. in English from the University of Washington and went on to receive her law degree from Seattle University. As an immigrant herself, she understands the plights of immigrants, and is deeply committed to addressing the concerns and problems that immigrants face. In her free time, she enjoys reading, arts & crafts, camping, hiking, and road cycling.