If you’ve received your 2-year conditional green card it’s easy to think that you’ve successfully completed the immigration process. Yet a 2-year green card is temporary. You’re not really a permanent resident until you receive your 10-year green card.
The I-751 petition is the way that you receive your 10-year legal permanent resident card. After receiving your 10-year card you can generally renew your green card through a simple routine process. A two year green card may not be renewed.
You can contact me, Boston immigration attorney Giselle M. Rodriguez, for help with your Form I-751 or other immigration forms, or read on to find out more.
Two quick notes:
- We can meet in-person, on Zoom, or by phone.
- My legal fees DO include the translations of relevant documents.
What can go wrong with an I-751 petition?
Marriage-based petitions are given the most scrutiny. In your I-751 application and interview, USCIS will be looking for evidence that you’ve remained married, that your marriage was legitimate, and that you still meet all of the conditions for a green card.
If you and your spouse are having marital troubles or are involved in divorce proceedings, it can be very difficult to secure a 10-year green card. Nevertheless, there are situations where you may file a Form I-751 without your spouse. For example, it is possible to file without your spouse if they died or were abusive.
If there are issues with joint filing, having an attorney with you throughout the process can help.
How long does it take for an I-751 petition to be approved?
It can take up to a year to process an I-751 petition, so start early. You are allowed to remain in the United States while your petition is pending – there’s a grace period – but it’s important not to let your 2-year green card expire before you start the process.
You are required by law to file your Form I-751 during the 90-day period BEFORE the expiration of your conditional residence permit. It may be wise to work with your attorney to get all of your paperwork in good condition even before that 90-day period arrives.
How can an immigration lawyer help with Form I-751?
There are several ways I can help you. The first is by understanding and then developing a strategy for your unique circumstances. I know what might concern USCIS, and how we might meet those objections together.
I will ensure that your petition includes all of the appropriate evidence to minimize the questioning and to prevent delays.
Also, I can prepare you for the USCIS interview in advance, and I can attend the interview with you. This can make a huge difference in how USCIS treats you, in what questions are asked, and even in how the interview goes. For example, if you’re not sure what a question means or how to answer it, I can stop and explain what the officer is really looking for.
Contact my office in Boston today to give yourself the best chance of securing your long-term residency in the United States.