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Overview of Immigration Presentation


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American Gateways "Overview of Immigration".

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Overview of Immigration Presentation

  1. 1. Overview of Immigration American Gateways Holly Miranda ~ Board of Immigration Appeals Accredited Representative
  2. 2. American Gateways Services <ul><li>American Gateways is a Central Texas non-profit organization that provides immigration legal services and education to secure justice for new Americans and enrich Central Texas communities </li></ul><ul><li>American Gateways Staff </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Austin Office: 4 Attorneys, 3 Case Workers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>San Antonio Office: 1 Attorney, 1 Accredited Representative </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. American Gateways Legal Services Programs <ul><ul><li>Family Based Immigration, Adjustment and Citizenship Program </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Program Representing Survivors of Abuse </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Asylum & Detention Assistance Program </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Other Assistance: Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, Temporary Protected Status </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Family Based Immigration, Adjustment and Citizenship Program <ul><li>The Family Based Immigration, Adjustment and Citizenship Program (FBIACP) provides legal assistance to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Relatives of US Citizens (USC) and Legal Permanent Residents (LPR) who are eligible to immigrate to the United States through family based petitions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eligible individuals with non-LPR legal status, such as refugees, asylees and U Visa holders (for crime victims), in the application process for adjusting to LPR status </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Legal Permanent Residents with applications for naturalization to become United States citizens </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Program Representing Survivors of Abuse <ul><li>The Program Representing Survivors of Abuse (PRISA) assists individuals in applying for immigration benefits under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) and the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act (VTVPA) to crime victims including: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Human Trafficking </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Domestic Violence </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Other crimes of violence such as Rape & Child Abuse </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Asylum & Detention Assistance Program <ul><li>Asylum and Detention Assistance Program offers legal representation to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Asylum seekers and detained immigrants </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Majority of immigrants served by this program are detained asylum seekers. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>LOP- Legal Orientation Program </li></ul><ul><ul><li>conducts educational rights presentations in two local immigration detention centers </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Federal Immigration Structure US Department of Homeland Security US Immigration And Customs Enforcement US Citizenship and Immigration Services US Customs And Border Protection
  8. 8. “ My client is undocumented—How can he become a citizen?” <ul><li>Immigration law requires that Immigrants obtain status as “Legal Permanent Residents”, (Also known as “Green Card Holders”), before they can apply for citizenship </li></ul><ul><li>Very few ways for undocumented immigrants to obtain any legal Immigration status and many do not have any available to them. </li></ul><ul><li>Must have a specific basis for getting legal Immigration status. </li></ul><ul><li>AG program services include some of the most common ways for undocumented immigrants to obtain Immigration status. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Immigration Status <ul><li>There are several kinds of Immigration status including: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>United States citizen </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Permanent Resident (“Green Card” Holder) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Refugee </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Asylee </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Temporary Protected Status </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Deferred Action </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Temporary “Nonimmigrant” Status </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Visa Holder </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Main Routes to Permanent Resident Status <ul><li>Adjustment of Status for humanitarian grounds: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Refugees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Asylees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Crime Victims </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Adjustment of Status for Certain Professional Visa holders </li></ul><ul><li>Petitioned by Permanent Resident or by U.S. Citizen Family Members </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Processing for Permanent Resident Status may take Immigration several years </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Common Pathways to Citizenship <ul><li>US Citizen </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Legal Permanent Resident (LPR) </li></ul><ul><li>    </li></ul><ul><li>Asylee/ Family- Employment- Crime Victims </li></ul><ul><li>Refugee Based Based </li></ul>
  12. 12. Family-Based Immigration <ul><li>U.S. Citizens may petition spouse, parents, children and siblings </li></ul><ul><li>Permanent Residents may petition spouse and unmarried children </li></ul>
  13. 13. Application Process for Permanent Resident Status <ul><li>Step 1: USC or LPR files petition for family member </li></ul><ul><li>Step 2: Beneficiary family member applies for Permanent Resident status through one of two processes: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Adjustment of Status (within the U.S.) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consular Processing (through a U.S. Consulate abroad) </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Immediate Relatives of US Citizens Not Subject to Processing Limits <ul><li>Immediate Relatives include: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Spouse of U.S. citizen </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Parent of an adult U.S. citizen who is over the age of 21 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Child of U.S. citizen who is unmarried and under the age of 21 </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Processing Times for Preference Categories subject to Processing Limits <ul><li>Immigration Law sets limits on number of visas or grant of Permanent Resident status available per country per year to certain categories of family-based petitions- these are called “Preference Categories” </li></ul><ul><li>Immigration processes family petitions for preference categories according to category and according to date the petition was filed with Immigration </li></ul><ul><li>In some family preference categories Immigration may take several years to process a family petition </li></ul>
  16. 16. Preference System Categories for Non-Immediate Relatives <ul><li>Unmarried son/daughter over 21 years of age of a U.S. citizen (USC) (1 st ) </li></ul><ul><li>Spouse or unmarried child under 21 of Permanent Resident (2A) </li></ul><ul><li>Adult unmarried son/daughter over 21 of Permanent Resident (2B) </li></ul><ul><li>Married child of USC (3 rd ) </li></ul><ul><li>Sibling of adult USC over 21 (4 th ) </li></ul>
  17. 17. Department of State VISA BULLETIN *Published each month by the U.S. Department of State to inform the public of current processing times *Taken from: 01JAN88 22DEC95 01JAN02 01JAN02 01JAN02 4th 22OCT91 22OCT92 01JAN01 01JAN01 01JAN01 3rd 15MAY99 22JUN92 15APR03 15APR03 15APR03 2B 01JAN08 01APR05 01JAN08 01JAN08 01JAN08 2A 01JUN94 08JAN93 01JAN05 01JAN05 01JAN05 1st PHILIPPINES MEXICO INDIA CHINA-mainland born All Charge- ability Areas Except Those Listed Family
  18. 18. Bars to Admission to the United States for Unlawful Presence <ul><li>Family members of USC’s and LPR’s may be subject to bars to receiving Immigration status if they have resided in the United States for over 6 months time without Immigration status- including 3 and 10-year bars to admission to the USA </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Applies to individuals over the age of 18 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Also may be applied to individual under the age of 18 if more than one entry to the U.S. without inspection by Immigration officials </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. Seeking Legal Advice <ul><li>Who Can Give Legal Advice? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Immigration Attorney </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Board of Immigration Appeals Accredited Representative employed by Certified NGO </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Notary Publics cannot give legal advice. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Other local referrals in Austin, Texas: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Catholic Charities: (512) 494-0148 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Immigration Counseling and Outreach Services: (512) 467-9816 </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lawyer’s Referral Service: (512) 472-8303 </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Contacting American Gateways (512) 478-0546 <ul><ul><li>Appointments and general information: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Extension 200 </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Outreach, Volunteers and Trainings: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Extension 214 </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> </li></ul></ul>