Naturalization is the process by which you can become a U.S. citizen if you were born in another country. Once you are naturalized you will enjoy virtually all of the benefits of citizenship shared by all other citizens, including the right to vote.
There are various ways for you to earn your U.S. citizenship, including:
- You have been a resident for at least five years and meet the naturalization eligibility requirements.
- You have been a permanent resident for at least three years and meet the eligibility requirements to file as the spouse of a U.S. citizen.
- You meet the qualifying requirements due to service with the U.S. armed forces.
- Your child may qualify for naturalization if you are U.S. citizen and your child was born outside of the United States, currently resides outside the United States, and meets all other eligibility requirements.
Consular Processing & Adjustment of Status
Consular processing and adjustments of status are two ways by which you may obtain your permanent resident status and green card once you are eligible to do so. With consular processing you are first assigned an immigrant visa number. Then you can contact a U.S. Department of State consulate abroad in order to obtain an immigrant visa to travel to the United States and be admitted as a permanent resident.
The adjustment of status path will apply to you if you are already in the United States and wish to be granted permanent resident status without having to leave the country and return to your home country in order to complete processing.
Contact our law office to discuss your situation and determine which of these options may be best for you.
If you have been persecuted in your home country, or fear you may be persecuted due to your race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership of a particular social group, you may be eligible for asylum. An attorney at Lacroix Ramos can guide you through the process of applying for asylum. An asylum petition allows you to ask the United States to permit you to reside in the U.S. because you fear returning to your home country, a place that is unable or unwilling to protect you. You may also include your spouse and children in your asylum petition.
U nonimmigrant status (U visa) is a non-immigrant status which you may be eligible for if you have been the victim of certain crimes and are willing to help authorities investigate and prosecute the criminal activity. Common crimes include: domestic violence, felonious assault, sexual assault, trafficking, witness tampering, etc. If you have been a victim of any crime in the United States, please speak with one of our attorneys to determine if it qualifies you for a U Visa. Under certain circumstances, indirect victims (i.e. parents of a crime victim) may also be eligible for a U visa.
The T Nonimmigrant Status (T visa) is a set aside for those who are or have been victims of human trafficking, protects victims of human trafficking and allows victims to remain in the United States to assist in an investigation or prosecution of human trafficking. This can take the form of both sex and labor Trafficking. Many people do not even realize that they are or have been victims of trafficking. If you feel that an employer has made false promises to you about your employment to lure you into the U.S., please contact us so that we can discuss your options.
Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)
Being a victim of domestic violence can be a very scary, traumatizing experience, making you feel isolated and stuck in a dangerous situation. In order to prevent women from staying in abusive relationships because of their status, the U.S. government created a way for battered spouses and children to petition for themselves. The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) allows you to file an immigrant visa petition if you are a battered spouse, child, or parent of a U.S. citizen or green card resident. You may file without the abuser’s knowledge, allowing for your safety and independence. Don’t be fooled by the name, men are eligible to apply as well.
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
If you came to the United States as undocumented child, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program allows you to petition to stay in the country for periods of two years and obtain work authorization, subject to renewal. There are various guidelines you must meet in order to qualify for the DACA program. Contact our office for more information and to learn of any recent updates or changes to the program.
Temporary Protected Status (TPS)
Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is a temporary immigration benefit granted to eligible citizens and nationals of designated countries. A country is designated for TPS by the Secretary of Homeland Security when it has been determined that it may be unsafe for you to return to your home country, or when your home country has been deemed unable to handle the return of its nationals. TPS beneficiaries will not be required to leave the United States and may obtain work authorization for as long as their country is designated. Similar to DACA, TPS is not permanent and is subject to renewal.
Why Choose Us
At Lacroix Ramos, Attorneys at Law, LLP we are Located in White Plains, NY – serving clients in Westchester, Fairfield & New York City. We pride ourselves on helping you secure the best possible outcome for your immigration situation. We have dedicated our law practice to fighting for those who wish to live, work, and start businesses in the United States, as well as undocumented immigrants, and others who need help working through the complicated U.S. immigration process.
Contact us now to discuss your immigration situation and to see how we can help you.