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Adjustment of Status - Frequently Asked Questions


What is Adjustment of Status?

Adjustment of Status is a procedure allowing certain foreign nationals already in the U.S. to apply for immigrant status. Foreign nationals admitted to the U.S. in a nonimmigrant,refugee, or parolee category may have their status changed to that of lawful permanent resident if they are eligible to receive an immigrant visa and one is immediately available.

Note: In such cases, the foreign national is counted as an immigrant as of the date of adjustment, even though the alien may have been in the United States for an extended period of time.


How do I apply for Adjustment of Status in the U.S.?

To adjust your status in the U.S., you must submit:

  • Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status.

Note: Please read the introductory page to the Form I-485 carefully for complete details. These details are different depending on the visa qualifications that you have. The introductory page will also tell you where to file your application for Adjustment of Status. After you submit your application materials, you will be asked to go to a United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office to answer questions about your applications.

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Will I get a Work Permit after applying for Adjustment of Status?

Yes, if you are inside the U.S. and have filed Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, you are eligible to apply for a Work Permit while your case is pending. You should use Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization to apply for a work permit.

Note: You do not need to apply for a Work Permit once you are granted an immigrant visa or adjust to permanent resident status. As a legal permanent resident, you should receive a permanent resident card that will provide evidence that you have a right to live and work in the U.S. permanently.

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