USCIS has a tool that makes life a lot easier for immigrants: how to use it
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has a tool to help make life much easier for immigrants.
Explore My Options tool allows you to determine which applications a person with a certain immigration status has the right to submit, and also helps to navigate the cost of the service and understand how to arrange everything correctly.
"This page shows the options that you may be eligible for, but we cannot guarantee that we will approve your application or petition," the agency's website says.
How to use the tool
Explore My Options is pretty easy to use. On the website, you will see two boxes with a drop-down list.
In the first, you must indicate your immigration status. Available for selection: "foreigner", "green card holder", "US citizen" and "employer".
In the second window you have to choose which immigration service or status you are interested in. The options available vary depending on your status.
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When you have selected all the options, you just need to click the Explore My Options button, and the site will show all possible options for doing what you want. In addition, the site provides links to the relevant petitions and calculates the cost of the process.
For example, if you select the status "green card holder", and in the second line - "extend or replace the green card", then the site gives 1 possible option: you need to apply for the extension or replacement of the green card (according to the site, it will cost $ 455). Here you will also see a description of the service and what you need to do. In our case, it is: “Having a green card (permanent resident card) allows you to permanently live and work in the United States. The steps you must take to apply for a green card will depend on your individual situation. "
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And if you choose "US citizen" and "help a relative to obtain permanent resident status", then the site gives two possible options.
1. Petition of a US citizen to become a lawful permanent resident for a preferred relative (US Citizen Petition for a Preference Relative to Become a Lawful Permanent Resident)
- Form submission fee: $ 535
2. A petition by a US citizen for the next of kin to become a lawful permanent resident (US Citizen Petition for an Immediate Relative to Become a Lawful Permanent Resident)
- Form submission fee: varies
Who is considered a close relative, and who is preferable, will help to understand this material.
If you are a US citizen, you can apply for a permanent residence permit (green card) for certain family members. Obtaining lawful permanent resident status is a two-step process that includes a petition you file for your relative (Form I-130, Petition for a Foreign Relative) and your relative's application for a status adjustment (Form I-485, Application for Registration of Permanent Residence residence or change of status).
Explore My Options can be used by link.
Important! US immigration laws are complex, and the information on the agency's website may not fully reflect your situation. Read the form instructions for more information on legal, regulatory, and form requirements.
The information on the site is not legal advice. You should consult with a licensed attorney or a non-profit agency accredited by the Immigration Appeals Board.
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