Path to a Green Card Through Special Immigrant Juvenile Status

Special Immigrant Juvenile (SIJ) status provides a pathway to lawful permanent residency in the United States for certain noncitizen minors. These young individuals have undergone neglect, mistreatment, or abandonment and have been involved in state juvenile court proceedings because of these circumstances. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) determines eligibility for SIJ status through the adjudication of Form I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant.

To qualify for a Green Card under the SIJ classification, several key criteria must be met. Applicants need to properly file Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, and must have been inspected and admitted or inspected and paroled into the United States. They must also be physically present in the U.S. at the time of filing Form I-485 and be eligible to receive an immigrant visa. An available immigrant visa at the time of filing and at the final decision by USCIS or the immigration court is also needed.

Furthermore, applicants must not be subject to any bars to adjusting their status and must be admissible to the United States as lawful permanent residents. If there are any grounds of inadmissibility, they must be eligible for a waiver or other relief. A critical part of the process is having an approved or pending Form I-360. The form can be filed separately or concurrently with Form I-485, provided it ultimately gets approved.

There is no age restriction for applying for a Green Card based on SIJ status. If the individual was under 21 at the time of properly filing Form I-360, they would not be disqualified from obtaining a Green Card even if they turn 21 before filing Form I-485 or before USCIS completes the adjudication. This ensures that young immigrants who were minors at the time of initial filing continue to have the opportunity to seek permanent residency despite reaching adulthood during the process.

Contact Rahimi Law Firm P.C. today to learn more about obtaining a Green Card through Special Immigrant Juvenile Status!