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Posts Tagged ‘N-400’

Naturalization Approved for Irvine Client; Next: Petitioning for Parents in Mexico to Receive Immigrant Visas

April 7th, 2014 No comments
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I recently attended a naturalization interview for an Irvine client. He had been a permanent resident for almost a decade when he decided to pursue naturalization. He came to me in late 2013 asking about the naturalization process. I explained that he was eligible for naturalization because he had been a permanent resident for over five years and he had no moral character issues during the last five years. He told me he wanted to naturalize so he could petition for his parents who still lived in South America. They had retired and he hoped to have them move to the US so they could help take care of my client’s young children.

We helped him gather the necessary documents in order to naturalize. We prepared all the forms and evidence and filed the case in December 2013. Everything processed smoothly without any delays or requests for evidence. The interview was scheduled about four months after we filed the N-400. The interview went forward in the Santa Ana office of USCIS. the officer was new, and I had never worked with her before. She conducted a relaxed and efficient interview and we were well prepared with all the necessary documents. My client passed the naturalization exams including the civics, reading and writing tests. The total time for the interview as just over a half hour.

We anticipate receiving the oath ceremony notice within the next few weeks. Once my client takes the naturalization oath, we will file I-130 visa petitions for his mother and father. We have already started putting together the necessary evidence and information so we are ready to file as soon as we have proof of my client’s US citizen status. I expect the total processing time for the I-130 visa petitions and consular interview will be around 8 months. Hopefully, his parents can arrive in the US before the end of the year.

If you are considering the naturalization process or want to petition for your parents to become permanent residents, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will personally meet with you to help you better understand the process, what to expect and which options are best for you.

Naturalization Approved for Newport Beach Client

December 23rd, 2013 No comments
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One of our Newport Beach clients was just approved for naturalization at the interview. The client, who is originally from Germany, has been a permanent resident for the last three years and married to his wife for that entire time. We applied for naturalization by filing the N-400 in August 2013. We included evidence that the couple has lived together for the last three years along with all the necessary information and documentation.

The client works for a large company and he travels extensively as part of his work. While his travel abroad over the last three years was substantial, he did not spend more than half his time outside the United States over the last three years, so the issue was not problematic at the interview in Santa Ana.

The officer, who I’ve worked with on several naturalization cases, asked questions about travel and marriage along with the civics test questions. My client was well-prepared on what to expect at the interview, and he did an excellent job. At the end of the interview, the officer approved the case.

If you are considering the naturalization process, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will personally meet with you to help you better understand how we can help you achieve the outcome you desire. We have handled countless naturalization cases over the years – some involving complex issues and others more routine.

Naturalization Approved for Orange County Client After Three Years of Permanent Residency

December 19th, 2013 No comments
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One of our Santa Ana clients was approved for naturalization recently. He has been a permanent resident for three years, and we represented him through the entire process. He obtained his conditional permanent residency based on his marriage to his US citizen wife. Two years later, we helped him file the I-751 petition for removal of conditions, and the case was approved without an interview. One year later we filed the N-400 application for naturalization.

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As the spouse of a US citizen and lawful permanent resident for the past three years, he was eligible to naturalize two years earlier than most permanent residents. When we filed, we included evidence that he has lived with his wife for the past three years. The interview went smoothly and his case was approved on the spot.

We plan to move forward with petitioning for his parents. As a US citizen, he can petition for his parents and visas will be immediately available to them. Adjustment of status will be available as well because they entered the United States lawfully albeit many years ago.

The client and his family are very excited to be moving forward with the parents green cards. They have lived in the United States for many years, have paid taxes and worked hard, and have raised their children here.

If you are considering naturalization, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will help you better understand the process and whether you stand a good chance of being approved. Every year we help our clients obtain green cards or US citizenship. Let our experience assist you in the complicated immigration process.

Anaheim Clients Have I-485 Applications Approved as the Parents of US Citizen Son; Green Cards Issued

December 3rd, 2013 No comments
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Two of our Anaheim clients were approved for adjustment of status to permanent resident status. Their son, who was born in the United States, turned 21 years old over the summer, and shortly after his birthday we filed for his parents adjustment of status.

Because the parents entered the United States legally using tourist visas in the late 1980s, they were eligible to adjust status to green card holders without having to leave the United States or qualify under INA 245i.

As a general rule, if an alien is an immediate relative of a US citizen, and the alien entered the US legally, adjustment of status is an option. The most recent entry into the US is the most important. In some cases, an alien that entered the US without a visa, may be eligible to adjust status. Two examples involve INA 245i and Quilantan adjustments.

In the present case, my clients entered the US using B-1 tourist visas in the late 1980s. They overstayed the six month authorized stay and never left the United States. In 1992, the wife gave birth to a son in California.

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Because the couple never left the US, their last entry into the US was legal. Therefore, when their son turned 21 years old, they became eligible to adjust status through him. We filed the necessary evidence along with the I-130 visa petitions and I-485 adjustment applications, and three months later a joint interview for both parents was held in the Santa Ana office of USCIS.

The officer was someone I’ve worked with on many cases. He is always professional and polite and his understanding of the immigration laws is top-notch. He asked some questions about their immigration history, time spent outside the US and criminal history. My clients had no criminal issues whatsoever which made the interview go more smoothly. At the end of the interview, he told them he was approving their case and they would receive their green cards within a few weeks.

My clients were extremely happy, and they invited me out to lunch afterwards. They talked about being able to visit family in their home country for the first time in almost 25 years. The wife planned to look for a new job now that she had employment authorization and could work anywhere she wanted. They asked questions about naturalization and being able to apply for their parents to come to the US. It was nice to see them so excited about their future.

If you are considering the green card process, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a consultation. I am happy to meet with you and help you better understand which options are available. There are many rumors out there about immigration processes, new laws and fees, and I enjoy helping people obtain a good understanding of how the immigration laws apply to them.

Naturalization Approved for Three Year Permanent Resident Based on Marriage to US Citizen

November 21st, 2013 No comments
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We just received an approval for a naturalization case. The client and his wife live in Fullerton. They married in 2009 and we helped them with the adjustment of status to permanent resident. Just last year we helped him get the I-751 application to remove conditions approved so that he would be an “unconditional” permanent resident. We provided extensive evidence to show that they were still living together, combining their assets and conducting themselves like a married couple.

Under the federal naturalization laws, a permanent resident that has been married to a US citizen for the last three years and been a permanent resident for three years is eligible to naturalize. The standard rule is that a permanent resident must have a green card for five years before he can apply for naturalization, but the spouses of US citizens are given preferential treatment. The time spent as a conditional permanent resident counts toward the three year requirement.

As part of the N-400 application, we provided evidence to show that the couple has been living together for the last three years. At the naturalization interview in Santa Ana, the USCIS officer asks many questions of my client regarding his marriage. Even though the I-751 had already been approved, USCIS officers are trained not to rely on that when making a decision on naturalization. The USCIS officer was satisfied with our evidence of bona fide marriage.

My client passed all of the civics, reading and writing tests easily, and the case was approved on the spot. My client is excited to take his oath of citizenship. We plan to file a visa petition for his parents as soon as he becomes a naturalized citizen, which should take place in the next month or so.

If you are considering the naturalization process, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez handles countless naturalization cases every year, and he will personally meet with you in our Irvine office to help you better understand the process and whether naturalization is a viable option for you.

Naturalization Approved for Huntington Beach Client with Extensive Travel Abroad

November 15th, 2013 No comments
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One of our Naturalization clients from Huntington Beach was approved earlier this week. He had been a permanent resident for over eight years, but just recently decided to naturalize. He met all of the requirements for naturalization, but there was an issue with establishing physical presence in the United States. For the last four years his employer has required him to travel abroad extensively. Over the last year, he typically spent 30-40 days in Central America, then returned to the US for two weeks before traveling again.

One of the requirements for naturalization under INA 316(a) is that the applicant prove that during the five years immediately preceding the filing of the N-400 the applicant has been physically present in the United States at least half the time. Although physical presence and continuous residency are interrelated concepts, they are distinct requirements for naturalization.

In our case, the client wanted to naturalize soon because his frequent travels would eventually make him ineligible to naturalize. In 2008, he did not travel abroad much at all, so he accumulated substantial time in the US. However, in 2012 and 2013, he was spending only one quarter of his time in the United States. When we filed the naturalization case in June, we calculated that he had spent just over 800 days outside the United States. There were 1,826 days in the last five years; therefore, in order to be eligible to naturalize, we had to prove that he spent no more than 913 days abroad.

The naturalization interview was scheduled for September, but our client could not attend, so we rescheduled. The week before the naturalization interview, we recalculated his time outside the United States (because he had traveled abroad since we filed the N-400 with USCIS). After checking and rechecking every passport stamp, flight itinerary and other documents, we concluded that he had spent exactly 913 days outside the United States – half of the last five years.

At the interview, the USCIS officer (who I had worked with on many other cases) looked over the travel records and we answered questions about recent travel. I discussed and explained section 316(a) with the officer and he agreed that my client was just barely eligible to naturalize. At the end of the interview, the case was approved, and my client should receive the oath ceremony notice early next month.

My client was very pleased with the outcome. He looks forward to taking his citizenship oath and possibly filing visa petitions for some family members still living abroad. If you are considering the naturalization process, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will meet with you and discuss the facts and law involved in your case so you can be better informed on your options.

Immigration Law Information – Filing for Naturalization (N-400) While I-751 Still Pending . . .

October 10th, 2013 No comments
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Conditional residents that obtained their green cards through marriage are required to file the form I-751 during the ninety days that precedes the expiration date of the conditional resident card. In some instances, it might take USCIS over a year to make a decision on the I-751. Under INA 319(a), the spouse of a US citizen who has been married for three years or more and been a green card holder for three years or more, may apply for naturalization. This creates a situation in which a naturalization applicant might still be considered a conditional permanent resident at the time of the naturalization interview.

Generally, before approving an N-400 application filed by a conditional resident, the USCIS adjudicator should ensure that the applicant has met all the applicable requirements for approval of the I-751.

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INA 216(e) provides that for purposes of naturalization a conditional resident shall be considered to have been admitted as an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence and to be in the US as an alien lawfully admitted to the US for permanent residence. The USCIS Adjudicator’s Field Manual acknowledges that “there may be instances when a conditional permanent resident admitted pursuant to INA 216 will apply for naturalization while the Form I-751 is pending. (For more information on Form I-751 cases.)

In some instances, the I-751 file might be at a different office than the N-400. The USCIS adjudicator should conduct the Form N-400 examination as scheduled and should request the pending Form I-751 from the other USCIS office. Once the adjudicator receives the Form I-751, the adjudicator may decide both the N-400 and Form I-751 in accordance with all applicable provisions. A pending N-400 should not be approved under any circumstances prior to the adjudication of the pending I-751, unless provided by the INA. (One instance might involve naturalization under INA 329.)

Those considering filing an N-400 under INA 319(a), should note that USCIS regards the provisions of INA 319(a) to require a higher level of evidence of marital union and joint residence than is required for the approval of Form I-751 filed jointly (i.e. just because the I-751 is approved does not mean the N-400 under INA 319(a) will be).

If a Form I-751 is pending at the time of the conditional permanent resident’s Form N-400 examination, the officer should conduct the N-400 examination. They should not continue the interview or postpone it. If the Form I-751 petition to remove conditions on permanent residence is in the N-400 applicant’s A-file and the applicant establishes their eligibility for naturalization and establishes that s/he has met the requirements under INA 216(b)(1) and 216(d)(1)(A), the adjudicator may approve both forms concurrently.

If the Form I-751 is not in the A-file, the officer should proceed with the N-400 interview and request the I-751 file from the office that currently has possession. The officer should wait to adjudicate the N-400 until the pending I-751 has been reviewed and adjudicated.

If you have a pending I-751 and are eligible to apply for naturalization, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will help you better understand the process and whether this strategy is a viable option for you.

Naturalization Approved for Huntington Beach Client Under INA 319(a) Based on Spouse of US Citizen for Three Years

October 5th, 2013 No comments
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We recently received the good news that one of our Huntington Beach clients was approved for naturalization. Although the client has been a permanent resident for ten years, we filed the N-400 under INA 319(a). The client had a criminal conviction that occurred four years ago, and we wanted the statutory time period to be three years as opposed to five years.

Under INA 319(a), a lawful permanent resident may apply for naturalization if he has been married to a US citizen for at least three years, and the couple has been living in marital union for three years. The permanent resident must be a lawful permanent resident for at least three years. The benefit of the INA 319(a) is that it shortens the continuous residency requirement and good moral character requirement to three years.

There is more work involved in a 319(a) case because we must prove the couple has been living together. USCIS officers scrutinize these cases more than normal N-400 cases.

The interview went relatively smooth. We provided substantial evidence regarding the marriage. The officer asked many questions about the criminal conviction and we provided the necessary conviction records; however, I had to explain to the officer why my client was eligible to naturalize under INA 319(a). Eventually, I asked to speak to a supervisor who I had worked with many times previously. She agreed with my assessment and the officer eventually approved the case.

If you are considering the naturalization process, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a consultation. We handle many naturalization proceedings every year including complex cases involving criminal convictions and routine naturalizations involving clients that want to ensure that everything will go smoothly. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will personally meet with you to discuss the facts involved with your case and whether naturalization is a viable option for you.

Client in Pittsburgh, PA approved for Naturalization as US Citizen

January 25th, 2012 No comments
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We recently received the good news that one of our clients from Irvine, who is currently studying in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania was approved for naturalization. There was an issue whether our client, who was a permanent resident, had broken his continuous residency and was barred from naturalization. In general, a naturalization applicant must satisfy USCIS that s/he has maintained continuous residency in the United States during the statutory time period, which is generally five years (three years in some cases).

The naturalization applicant cannot leave the United States for more than six months. An absence of more than six months raises a rebuttable presumption that continuous residency has been broken. USCIS will consider the following factors when deciding whether the applicant has rebutted the presumption: maintaining employment in the US; presence of immediate family in the US; retention of full access to US home; not obtaining employment abroad. Other factors may be considered relevant as well.

If an applicant is absent from the US for over one year, continuous residency is broken. There are certain exemptions including military service abroad, employment abroad and spouses of US citizens working abroad for US companies. There are very specific details regarding these exemptions, and you should contact The Nunez Firm to inquire if they apply to you.

In the present case, we provided USCIS with a legal brief explaining the law and why our client’s absence from the US did not disqualify him from naturalizing. The client advised that the naturalization interview went smoothly and he was very happy that he would soon be taking the oath ceremony to become a naturalized US citizen.

If you are considering the naturalization process, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a free consultation. We handle many naturalization proceedings every year including complex cases involving criminal convictions and routine naturalizations involving clients that want to ensure that everything will go smoothly. Managing attorney Jay Nunez will personally meet with you to discuss the facts involved with your case and whether naturalization is a viable option for you.

N-336 Approved for Santa Ana Client Originally from China

January 21st, 2011 No comments
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We just received a notice of approval for an N-336 we filed for a client living in Santa Ana. The client will be able to naturalize and become a US citizen now.

At the first interview, our client attended by herself without legal representation. The officer (who happens to be one of the most difficult officers with whom to work) asked for all types of tax documents from the applicant’s husband’s business. Although these documents were completely irrelevant, the officer demanded them or she threatened to deny the case. The applicant was unable to organize and find the tax documents in the 30 day time period allowed by the USCIS officer, and the case was denied.

Upon filing the N-336, I argued that the tax records for the husband’s business were irrelevant and had no bearing on the applicant’s moral character. The N-336 officer agreed with me and approved the case.

If you are considering naturalization or have been denied and want to file the N-336, contact The Nunez Firm to schedule a free consultation. Managing attorney Jay Nunez is well versed in the naturalization laws and will help you better understand the process of naturalization and chances for success.

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