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Boulder Immigration And Naturalization Law Blog

De-stress your K1 visa process

No matter where your country of origin happens to be, if you intend to marry and start a new life in Colorado, as an immigrant you will likely face several challenges along your journey. Getting married is definitely a cause of joy for most people and your wedding day is something you'll want to have fond memories of in years to come. The last thing you need is to face major visa problems or other immigration obstacles that could delay or prevent your entrance to the United States.

As with most immigration processes, the K1 visa system is often complicate to navigate if you are not familiar with the way things work. If you have another family member or close friend who has already successfully applied for and obtained a fiancé visa, as it's sometimes called, you may be able to seek information that can help you avoid problems and can prepare you for what lies ahead.

The difference between immigrant and non-immigrant visas

If you plan to enter the United States from another country of origin, that means you need an immigrant visa, right? Perhaps, although it would depend on your particular purpose for wanting to come to Colorado -- or whichever state in which you planned to reside. U.S. immigration law is quite complex and often changes. The last thing you need is to violate some sort of regulation and find yourself locked up in a detention center, awaiting a removal hearing.

Much confusion and stress (and legal trouble) can typically be avoided if you seek clarification of existing immigration laws ahead of time, and make sure you apply for the appropriate one (in the proper way) according to your immediate needs and long-term goals.

Are you eligible for a green card?

Some people living in Colorado as immigrants waited years to enter the United States. If you are currently trying to navigate the process to obtain a green card, you may find that, some days, you have more questions than answers. As with most U.S. immigration law topics, applying for a green card can be quite complicated and overwhelming. To begin with, not everyone is eligible for non-citizen permanent residency. Beyond knowing that green cards are called such because of their color, you may lack information needed to apply.

There are many support networks available for someone in your situation. Knowing where to turn for help is often half the battle won. Consequently, there are also a lot of scams where people try to take advantage of immigrants like you by promising to expedite the green card application process or secure a visa for payment. While there are typically fees involved in such processes, you should be wary as such fees would be part of the application process and not requested from a particular individual.

The next step after receiving a green card through marriage

Receiving conditional resident status in the United States was a happy side effect of your marriage. In fact, going through the channels to obtain your status in this country may have been one element that delayed your marriage or at least created a bit of extra tension during your preparations. However, the benefits you gained were worth the stress.

You are likely aware of the conditions that exist on your green card and the reasons for these conditions. Now that you have shown that your marriage was in good faith, you are ready to take the steps necessary for the removal of those conditions.

How to not mess up your immigration interview

There are any number of reasons immigration officials may request your presence at an interview. Since you arrived in Colorado to live (whether that was last week or 10 years ago), you've likely been putting forth every effort to acclimate yourself to a new lifestyle, as well as all the customs and traditions in the United States. If you emigrated from a country of origin where there is much poverty, violence and danger, life here may have come as a bit of a culture shock to you.

It's only natural for you to feel overwhelmed and face many challenges as you build a new life in a new place. You didn't come all this way, however, just for someone to say you cannot stay. Therefore, if you have to appear at an immigration interview, you'll want to make sure you know what to expect and how to act (and not act) ahead of time.

As a victim of crime, you might be able to avoid removal

The last thing you expected when you were walking through the parking lot at a Colorado shopping center was that you would become victim to a crime. Although you may have been grateful that you survived and your injuries were non-life threatening, you may have suffered economic loss as well if the person who assaulted you got away with your wallet. Do you hesitate to tell police about the incident because you're worried about your legal status? You may want to learn more about the U Visa process.

A U Visa provides temporary protected status to people in your situation. As with most government programs, there are eligibility requirements you must satisfy before you can apply. This visa is not permanent; so, you'd have to apply for renewal when it expires.

Does a notice to appear have you on edge?

Living as an undocumented immigrant in Colorado may make your life stressful at times. If you're like many other immigrants without legal residency papers, you probably do your best to keep your head low, go to work, obey the law and take care of your family as best you can. You probably get nervous in situations that would seem relatively minor to the average citizen, such as if a police officer pulls you over in a traffic stop.

There's another document that may literally raise the hairs on the back of your neck that is known as a notice to appear (NTA). In fact, if an official serves you with these papers, you can consider the removal process already begun and in progress.

Do you have a green light to get a green card?

Did you enter the country on a visa? Now that you are living in Colorado, do you want to remain in the United States? You may be able to do so if you receive permanent residency, also referred to as an adjustment of status or applying for a green card.

You may qualify for a green card, but first you must meet certain criteria to begin the application process. Generally, you must have entered the country legally, reside here and have a current visa. Additional requirements apply, and in order to know what those may be, you must determine under what category you will be applying.

Breaking free from the world of human trafficking

As a person travels through life, he or she may experience many emotions. Joy, sorrow, anger, excitement and others are all part of living a full life. However, if the emotion you have experienced most in life is fear, you may realize it is time to seek help, especially if the fear is because you are caught up in the horrors of human trafficking.

While each victim of this crime is different, many share similar qualities. Someone may have kidnapped you from your home, a family member may have sold you or someone tricked into leaving. Without question, you have spent much time afraid of what will happen to you and doing things you despise.

Obtaining temporary protected status

Escaping your native country may be the most difficult and dangerous decision of your life. Perhaps you desired to protect your family, and you worried for their safety every minute of the day. While you may want to return home, war, famine, an epidemic or some other extraordinary situation may make life there dangerous and difficult or make it impossible for you to even try to return. You may be eligible to remain in Colorado a little longer.

A federal humanitarian program allows provisional status to people like you from certain countries that are experiencing temporarily unsafe conditions. If you qualify for this program, you may be able to stay here in safety until circumstances improve in your country.

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