Law Office of Shelley Hennessee
Generally, immigration to the United States is made possible either through a family member or an employer. When immigrating through a family member, the relationship to the U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident family member, as well as the country of nationality of the immigrant, will determine the timeframe for completing the immigration process. For instance, an immigrant visa is immediately available to spouses and children (unmarried and under 21 years old) of U.S. citizens. Therefore, these individuals immigrate quickly to the U.S. For other family relationships, the wait time may be several years.
Naturalization and Citizenship
The next step after becoming a legal permanent resident is naturalization. A legal permanent resident is eligible to become a U.S. citizen, through the process of naturalization, after five years. If the legal permanent resident is married to a U.S. citizen, the requirement is only three years.
For legal permanent residents who are at least fifty (50) years of age and have been legal permanent residents for at least twenty (20) years, or for those who are at least fifty-five (55) years of age and have been legal permanent residents for at least fifteen (15) years, there is no English requirement to naturalize.
For children of U.S. citizens who were (1) under eighteen (18) on or after February 27, 2001, (2) resided permanently in the United States in the legal and physical custody of the U.S. citizen parent, and (3) were admitted to the U.S. as legal permanent residents, U.S. citizenship is automatically acquired and naturalization is not necessary. In this instance, an application for a U.S. Passport or Certificate of Citizenship is necessary.
Competent representation before the Executive Office for Immigration Review is essential. When one is faced with deportation, creative solutions and zealous advocacy make all the difference. At our law firm, we are dedicated to defending immigrant rights before federal immigration courts and the Board of Immigration Appeals. Ms. Hennessee has successfully litigated cases involving adjustment of status, cancellation of removal, TPS de novo relief, voluntary departure, termination of proceedings, NACARA, and waivers for fraud, unlawful presence, and crime.