Tuesday, June 28, 2011

I-485 Green Card Application and I-684 Affidavit of Support

Unfortunately, the bureaucracy didn’t stop for me once I had entered the US with my K1 Fiance Visa and got married.  The K1 Fiance Visa can only be used once, so having entered the USA and got married, its use was essentially over, although I did, of course, keep all my documents in case they were needed for proof further down the line (the I-94 inside my passport, for instance, was essential later for proving that I had entered the country legally, as was the I-797 approval notice that was received by my wife at the end of the I-129 petition process).  Anyway, I was now ready for the next stage after getting married in the US (Florida), making my I-485 Green Card application for permanent residency, known as an adjustment of status or AOS.  If that was successful, then I would receive a USCIS Green Card and be classified as a resident alien by the USCIS.  Along with the I-485 Green Card application, I also applied for Advance Parole (AP) and Employment Authorization (EAD), as there was no fee to pay if I filed them at the same time as my application for adjustment of status (AOS).

The I-485 Green Card application is a thick form with lots of questions, but I had got used to filling out those when undergoing the K1 Fiance Visa Process.  What was a pain about applying for Adjustment of Status, in my wife and I’s experience, was putting together all the masses of evidence that was needed to go with the accompanying I-684 Affidavit of Support.  As well as providing proof that we were are married, my wife also had to present proof that she was financially solvent and able to support me.  This basically involves collecting together piles of tax returns that have to be sorted through and copied, as well as letters from my wife’s boss and months and months of bank statements, amongst other things.  I also had to include the I-693 vaccination supplement, a copy of my I-94, the I-684 Affidavit of Support, along with copies of all the bank, employment, and tax documents.  We also included evidence of our relationship, including: copy of marriage license, wedding cards and photos, letter from bank showing we had a joint bank account and a few other things, such as the I-797. 

As I mentioned, as well as the green card application, I also put in applications for temporary travel documents and temporary employment permission, known as I-131 Advance Parole (AP) and the I-765 Employment Authorization (EAD), so that I have the option of traveling and working while we wait for the adjustment of status application to be processed, although in practice the AP and EAD can also take months to be processed.  I thought it was worth putting them in, however, as there were no extra costs, given that they were filed with my I-485 and I-684.

The whole package of five application forms and status adjustment evidence was so big and heavy it cost us $14 for the postage!  (That was on top of the $980 we had to pay for the processing of the application!)  There is also a small fee at this point that you have to pay towards the biometrics that you will have to get later.  We actually forgot to include this the first time round and were sent a letter saying that they wouldn’t start processing our forms until they had received it.  They also send letters acknowledging receipt of the various forms.

The next stage after this is the biometrics appointment.  They send a letter inviting you when they are ready.  It took over four months for me just to get the I-131 Advance Parole (AP) and the I-765 Employment Authorization (EAD), never mind the Adjustment of Status, so try to keep patient!

19 comments:

  1. any special reason why it took 4 months to get the I-131 and I-765?
    Any idea what the average time for the AOS to be processed? I am getting nervous

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your blogs are really informative. i just want to ask your experience on the last green card interview, how was it? Was it tough or a piece of cake?

    ReplyDelete
  3. @anon - I think it takes anywhere between 4 - 8 months unfortunately, although the time varies, according to how busy they are etc. It's a stress waiting, but I think it was well over 5 months before I was even asked in for my biometrics!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Your blog is super helpful! We just submitted our k1 application and got the reciept notice! Exciting! lol. I was wondering if you were allowed to work as soon as the visa was granted or did you have to wait for all this green card stuff to go through??

    ReplyDelete
  5. How much does the green card application process cost? Currently looking into all options for my finace in France and I.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi I have a question. I understand that after marriage with k-1, the AOS needs to be filed within 90 days after entry to the States. How did you and your spouse find time to get all the paperwork together and sent in time? The AOS or other forms will not be approved before the visa expires, so what is the proof that it was sent and your legal immigrant?
    I have not yet started the process for my fiance but beginning the research of what needs to be done at each step, but the status between marriage and filing the forms before the visa expires is confusing me. Thank you for any input and advice. By the way, this blog is an invaluable tool and guide. Thank you for sharing your story step by step.

    ReplyDelete
  7. The whole process takes time and cost money, and when you do get to the states the process dosnt stop there. Save up a lot of money to take with you as you cant work for a while when you get there!!!. Take each processing stage as it comes it is what it is and there is no way of shortcutting it!!!!, Enjoy the whole process is my advice, at the end of it you will be a brighter person.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I answer some of the queries above in my post on the fiance visa timeline. After I arrived in the USA, I had to get married and then I put in my AOS/Green card application. The wedding and the application went in before the 90 day limit was reached. It takes months for the green card to be processed, I am going to do a timeline for it soon, during that time we lived off my savings and my wife's wage.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Is it possible at all to work during the green card processing?? Or does my fionce get 6 to 8 months vacation!!?

      Delete
  9. Hi Paul, i am about to submit my AOS. We were told to submit I-485,I-684EZ,I-765 and I-131. Just confused with the I-131, i was told by the immigration officer to cross out the advance parole document to allow me to return to the US after temporary foreign travel. I am doing this just in case i have to go back home(Philippines).Confused in Part 7 questions, i dont know what to write there. :( thank you for your blod, it is really very helpful.

    ReplyDelete
  10. @Anon - I am wary of giving specific advice on filling out forms, as I am concerned that I will get something wrong and mess things up for someone. I appreciate that it's difficult, though, and the USCIS help is very limited. Have you tried Googling for a Filipino forum that might be able answer your question?

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hi Paul!
    Just like you, I just got married with my US Citizen husband. I am filling for AOS right now and had a question about the Advance parole. If I need to go back to Canada (home country) before I get my green card, is it the form I need to file in? And how much does it cost? And how long does it take before you could travel?

    ReplyDelete
  12. There are many ways to obtain a green card: through employment, a family member or marriage. Individuals who have already obtained a green card may require the green card to be replaced, renewed or perhaps it is time to remove the conditions on your Conditional Green Card issued based marriage. Immigration Direct guides you through the Green Card process making it simple, secure and affordable.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Hi I'm in the process or researching and preparing things for my K1 fiancé visa, however do you know if there's any other way around the financial support? Only my fiancé's jobs come and go and so I was thinking possibly I could show I could support myself through the savings I have?? Do you know if this is possible at all??

    ReplyDelete
  14. If your fiance is NOT in the USA, you can obtain a Fiance Visa which allows your future spouse to enter the country for 90 days and have a marriage in USA. You can then start the marriage visa process and file an Adjustment of status (Form I-485).Get your K1 Fiance Visa quickly. Automated Visa Preparation System without the high legal fees. Approved by Immigration Lawyers.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Hi Paul! Thank you so much for putting this blog up, it is really helpful. About I-131, may I know if you also ticked option "d" which says, "I am applying for an advance parole document to allow me to return to the United States after temporary foreign travel." I am confused which to choose as I am not a PR yet, just currently preparing my I-485 and I wanted to bundle this up together with the EAD. Thanks sooo much!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Did you have to another interview after you got married, like the one you did for the K1 visa?

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hello Paul thanks for your post.Please i live in finland and my Fiance is a US citizen.We are about to submit the petition and my Fiance is still a student and i don't think she has been working that much for the past two years.Is it possible that she and her Mother provide documents that they both are going to sponsore me financially or is she the only one who can provide such proof?I will be happy to get a response to this question.

    ReplyDelete
  18. HI THERE, CAN ANY ONE HELP ME, AFTER GETTING MARRIED WITH MY FIANCE IN USA. AND WHEN I WILL APPLY FOR CHANGE OF STATUS, GREEN CARD, DO I NEED TO TAKE WITH ME THE BIRTH CERTIFICATES OF MY KIDS. THYE ARE ALL ADULT, IM FROMT EH PHILIPPINES,,, THANKS

    ReplyDelete