Status adjustment is a process of applying for a green card living in the U.S., for which you don’t need to move to your home country to process your visa. While consular processing is the alternative to adjust the status by applying for a green card outside the U.S., You have to live in your home country until your green card processing is completed. Consular and adjustment have different application forms, documents, timelines, and costs, but both have the same eligibility criteria. 

Timeline of adjustment of status (AOS):

Getting a green card through adjustment of status is a slow process and usually depends on the applicant’s situation.

  • The processing time for adjusting a marriage green card, even if your K-1 is approved, approximately takes eleven to twenty months.
  • Moreover, the processing time for adjustment of status (AOS) also depends on the applicant’s location in the U.S. from where he is applying for a green card. You must attach all your correct documents to avoid delay in the AOS file and processing time.

Cost of adjustment of status (Form I-485):

To complete your green card process, you must pay the required fee for adjustment of status. 

  • Firstly, you have to pay a fee for the initial petition forms. Form I-30 fee is about 535 dollars. Check the instructions and ensure that you submit the correct petitions fee.
  • If your I-30 petition is approved, you must pay a separate fee for your green card application (Form I-485). The price for I-485 is about 1140 dollars.
  • You will also need to pay a biometric fee which is about 85 dollars.
  • Likewise, you are required to pay 995 dollars for I-485 if your age is below fourteen years; for above fourteen years, the fee will be 1140 dollars.

Requirements for Adjustment of status: The requirements of AOS are as follows:

  • You can only qualify for a family-based green card for your close relatives such as spouse, parent, child, and sibling.
  • You can only qualify for an employment-based green card through an employer’s sponsorship based on your abilities.
  • You can also get your green card on humanitarian grounds.

How to file Form I-485:

  • Citizens of the U.S. are eligible for the status adjustment criteria and can submit Form I-485. To apply for lawful resident status adjustment, you must use both form I-485 and I-485 supplement A. 
  • Don’t file the form I-485 until your visa is available. 
  • Check your case status online and provide information about the application, like receipt name, A number, name, and date of birth, to USCIS.
  • If you change your address, you must inform your new address to USCIS within ten days.

Special instructions for adjustment of status:

  • Avoid travel during your adjustment status process because the U.S. government abandons the application for a green card, and you will have to restart the process from scratch.
  • To avoid this hustle, inform the USCIS and submit a travel document or advance parole to travel abroad.
  • After that, take the green card package that includes your travel permit application.

Eligibility to file Form I-485:

  • Close relatives, husband, and wife can file a Form I-485 on different categories such as employment-based, special immigrant, asylum, special programs, etc. 
  • The spouse physically present in the U.S. can also file Form I-485 to apply for a green card.

Essential documents to file Form I-485:

Form I-485 must be filed with essential documents to prove your eligibility for a green card application. The records for the marriage-based I-485 Form are as follows:

  • Evidence shows that the spouse enters the U.S. with an original visa issued by USCIS.
  • Copy of birth certificate and passport of foreign spouse nationality.
  • Evidence shows that your spouse is financially capable and supports you financially.
  • Copy of income tax paid by the spouse.
  • The signed affidavit of support by the spouse. 

Form I-485 is the second step of green card processing to support the applicant. You can submit both forms simultaneously if you are a close relative, like a spouse or parent. Form I-485 is also helpful for other types of green card applications and status adjustments. You can file Form I-485 online via mail to USCIS. 

Rejection of I-485:

Form I-485 can be rejected for any reason. Mainly its rejection is caused by incorrect and missing documents. If your Form I-485 is denied, you can send the application to USCIS for reconsideration. Try to attach all your valid documents to avoid the hustle.