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Filed: Timeline

Hi I'm new here although I spent some time reading this board a few years ago. It's an excellent resource, thank-you.

I don't know if this is the proper forum or not. If I'm wrong please move it.

I've searched your archives and haven't found an answer for my fiancé's situation.

She is a Philippine citizen who worked in a US Territory for over a decade and has a social security card because it was necessary for her work there. I don't know if she paid taxes to the IRS or SSA but I think she did. She came here 4 years ago on a tourist visa with her child who holds a US passport. The child gets social security survivors benefits because the deceased father was a US citizen. Father and child are both dual citizens of the US and Philippines.

She overstayed her tourist visa and has been employed since she got here. She has all the normal withholdings taken from her paycheck. I think she files her income taxes each year as well. I'll check.

The priority problem at the moment is that she got a state ID card when her visa was still valid and now she is coming up for a renewal of that. Unfortunately without a valid visa she cannot get her renewal. It is her only form of ID for banking and every other thing an ID is asked for. She is very concerned that she will face deportation if she has to get creative to cash her paychecks or do any other thing an ID is needed for. She was told by a lawyer a few years ago that she could wait until her child turns 21 and can sponsor her but that is a long way off and she would be vulnerable for that whole time. We are considering moving up our wedding date to help solidify ties to this country, get whatever ID or permissions she needs before the current one expires and start whatever paperwork is needed for her to become a legal citizen. We are also concerned it may look like a marriage of convenience as we've known each other for just less than a year and didn't get romantically involved until recently.

I read something here that if she has an immediate relative who is a citizen, ie, her child, and myself if we marry soon, that it will prevent deportation precedings while we learn and file the proper paperwork for her green card. We both live in the area of circuit court 9.

Also I am a disabled person and the beneficiary of several government programs. With 2 incomes I could probably withdraw from any that she would benefit from. I understand that if she can stay here there is a parole period where she will be unable to work. This can make things difficult as I also don't meet the income or capital requirements to sponsor an immigrant.

I've given as much information as I can here to answer questions from readers before they come up. I can see already there are other questions that I have to ask her. Any help or guidance would be sincerely appreciated.

Please spell out the letter abbreviations that I see here because I don't understand what any of them mean.

Thank-you in advance.

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Vietnam
Timeline

She's a long way from "starting any paperwork so she can become a legal citizen". She needs to become a legal permanent resident first.

Yes, it's not only possible they'll presume the marriage is for the purpose of evading immigration law, it's highly probably. Your job is to offset that suspicion with sufficient proof of a bona fide marital relationship. You'll find plenty of information in the Adjustment of Status from Work, Student & Tourist Visas forum on what constitutes proof of a bona fide marital relationship.

Her overstay won't be considered when USCIS adjudicates her Adjustment Of Status (AOS) petition. It's not relevant for someone who is applying for a green card based on being an immediate relative of a US citizen. The US citizen will be you - not her daughter. There is nothing her daughter can provide for her, immigration wise, at this time.

If she has worked then she must have paid her taxes in order to adjust status. Working illegally won't be considered, just as her unlawful presence won't be considered, but not paying taxes would definitely result in a denial. If she hasn't paid taxes then she'll need to file returns for each year she worked.

You will need a joint sponsor. Adjustment of status absolutely requires a sponsor who can submit a sufficient I-864 affidavit of support. You must submit this form. If you don't have sufficient income then you must have a joint sponsor also submit this form.

Spend some time in the Adjustment of Status forum I linked to above. Also, read the VJ Adjustment of Status guides for step-by-step instructions.


12/15/2009 - K1 Visa Interview - APPROVED!

12/29/2009 - Married in Oakland, CA!

08/18/2010 - AOS Interview - APPROVED!

05/01/2013 - Removal of Conditions - APPROVED!

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Filed: Timeline

Thank-you for your response JimVaPhuong. It looks like the learning curve will be steeper than we thought. Thank-you for the links, I learned a lot today and relearned some of what I knew a few years ago.

We originally planned on setting up housekeeping in May then a June wedding. It looks like a few months sooner won't make too much of a difference if they want to give us a closer look. Rent, utilities, bank accounts,insurance and powers of attorney will all be held jointly. We have a small circle of friends who know us both well. BTW, for others information, I met a man who got a home visit twice to check his bona-fides. I will expect that it could possibly happen to us as well.

I read our states requirements for an ID card and they seem to put the highest priority on a social security number which she has had for well over a decade. That may be all she needs as per our state's website. I'll run that by a local expert and see if there was anything not shown online. She may not need her passport and visa for a renewal. Her overstay was one of our biggest concerns, we'll knock that down a few notches, thank-you.

As for work, as I said she has had taxes and SSA deducted from her paycheck for the last 4 years and knowing her she's been filing her returns as well, I'll ask.

While she was an overseas worker she needed to apply for a US social security number to have the job. Given that the work she did was heavily regulated by the Federal Government and all the i's had to be dotted and all the t's crossed without exception, she couldn't have held the position without doing everything right as far as income and taxes were concerned. I'll ask her just to be sure.

She knows 2 people who have sponsored others before and I know 2 who have the means and will help sponsor her if they are fully aware of the potential liabilities.

This question may become moot after I read more but if everything goes smoothly with us and the government, she can potentially become a citizen in 5 years at which time the co-sponsors liability will be terminated, is that correct? Where can I find this information?

In my original post I said "getting creative" I did not mean illegal. We intend to keep everything up on the table and have faith that things will go our way. In todays reading at this site and others the people who had the smoothest transition, prepared for everything that could potentially happen, we will take the same approach.

I already have more questions brewing that I will post if I can't find satisfactory answers.

Thank-you very much JimVaPhuong for allaying some of our worries and pointing us in the right direction. You will hear more from me:-) Hopefully I'll have something to bring to the table for others.

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Vietnam
Timeline

Yes, the affidavit of support obligations are terminated when the alien becomes a US citizen. You can find this information in the instructions for the form itself.

http://www.uscis.gov/files/form/i-864.pdf


12/15/2009 - K1 Visa Interview - APPROVED!

12/29/2009 - Married in Oakland, CA!

08/18/2010 - AOS Interview - APPROVED!

05/01/2013 - Removal of Conditions - APPROVED!

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