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Temple Immigration Lawyer

Immigration Lawyer in Temple, TX

The city of Temple is located in Bell County and is considered part of the Killeen–Temple–Fort Hood metropolitan statistical area (MSA). Temple is located right on Interstate 35, about 35 miles south of Waco and 65 miles north of Austin.

The 2020 United States Census reported that Temple had a population of 85,416, which marked a 4.2 percent increase. According to the Census, 70.1 percent of residents are white, 28.3 percent are Hispanic or Latino, 14.3 percent are Black or African American, and 9.4 percent are two or more races.

Bell County Texas, EE.UU.

Temple Immigration Attorney

Any kind of immigration case in Temple can be an extraordinary challenge for the average person to try and navigate. You will give yourself the best chance of success by working with J. Sparks Law, PLLC because we have experience handling many of these types of cases and knowing how to help people succeed in them.

Our firm will provide you with legitimate board-certified legal representation in immigration law. Call (512) 877-7482 or contact us online for a free consultation.

Common Immigration Concerns

It can be very difficult for the average person to handle an immigration case on their own because of how many different concerns could be applicable, but J. Sparks Law, PLLC, will know how to help people facing the immigration system. Our firm has experience assisting people with such immigration concerns as:

  • Adjustment of Status — Much of an adjustment of status case relies on timing, and a person will want to be working with a lawyer who can make sure that a person is applying at the right time. People who already have a nonimmigrant visa status can seek permanent resident status or a Green Card through adjustment of status. The specific petition a person files will depend on their case, and it can take the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) several months, possibly up to two years, to approve a petition. People also need to pay up to $1,225 in filing fees, but certain refugees could be able to get their filing fees waived. One of the biggest concerns for most applicants will be the required initial evidence, as many applications are rejected for not including all that was required, so you will want to be sure that you have an attorney ensuring your application is as complete as possible.
  • Removal of Conditions — When a person and their spouse have been married for less than two years, a Green Card will be conditional and only valid for two years. People in these cases must petition for the removal of conditions that allows them to obtain a 10-year Green Card. A person will have to file a Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence, and timing will be very important regarding when this application is submitted, but there will also be an emphasis on the evidence that proves a marriage was bona fide. If a person does not remove the conditions on their Green Card, then they will run the risk of accruing an unlawful presence that could trigger removal proceedings and lead to a person being barred from reentry. People will want to be certain they retain legal counsel in these cases for help overcoming some of the most common reasons USCIS denies these applications, such as USCIS believing marriage was fraudulent, a lack of evidence, or applications being filed late without any explanation.
  • Green Card Renewal — A Green Card does not always have an expiration date, but many Green Cards typically expire within ten years. It is usually in a person’s best interest to try and seek a renewal within six months of a card expiring. People may have to submit different forms depending on their specific situations, so it will be important to work with an attorney so you can know that you are filing the right kind of paperwork for your case.
  • Fiancé Visas — If a foreign fiancé(e) wants to come to the United States to marry a United States citizen or lawful permanent resident, the fiancé(e) will have to obtain a K-1 nonimmigrant visa. The general rule for a K-1 or fiancé(e) visa is that a couple must intend to marry within 90 days of the fiancé(e) entering the United States. USCIS will also have concerns about whether a marriage is valid, so a couple is going to need to prove that their relationship is legitimate and they intend to create a life together, as USCIS is always on the lookout for people who are simply applying to try and gain immigration benefits.
  • U Visas and T Visas — The U visa and the T visa are two kinds of immigration benefits made available to people who are willing to help law enforcement or government officials in the investigation or prosecution of certain kinds of criminal activity. The U nonimmigrant status or U visa applies to victims of specific types of crimes that involve mental or physical abuse, while the T nonimmigrant status relates to victims of severe forms of trafficking in persons, such as sex trafficking and labor trafficking. A T visa will allow a person to remain in the United States for up to four years. 
  • Citizenship — Becoming a naturalized citizen of the United States will involve satisfying multiple requirements. Any person applying for citizenship must be a permanent United States resident or Green Card holder who has resided in the United States continuously for at least five years and resided in the state the application will be filed in for at least three consecutive months while being present in the United States for at least two and a half years in the last five years of required residence. Additional requirements include the English Test, the United States History and Government Test, and a person being of good moral character while residing in the United States continuously from the filing date of the application for naturalization until actually being granted United States citizenship. A person also must be at least 18 years of age and committed to the principles of the United States Constitution. 
  • Advance Parole — Advance parole refers to a travel document issued by USCIS that allows certain immigrants to travel outside of the United States and return lawfully. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients can apply for advance parole through USCIS under one of three categories: humanitarian, educational, or work purposes. Humanitarian purposes could include visiting sick or aging relatives, seeking medical care, or attending funeral services. Educational purposes could include study abroad programs or academic research, and work purposes can include overseas assignments for a job, job interviews, and professional conferences.
  • Employment Authorization — The employment authorization document (EAD) is a document issued by USCIS that allows an immigrant to work in the United States for a specified time period. While an EAD gives a person the ability to work in the United States, it does not offer as many privileges as a Green Card.
  • Waivers of Inadmissibility — Immigration and Nationality Act § 212 contains a list of grounds of inadmissibility under which people can make waiver applications. A waiver of inadmissibility seeks forgiveness from the federal government and a Green Card. It is important to understand that certain types of immigrants may not be able to seek waivers of inadmissibility.
  • Waivers of Unlawful Presence — Any person who is found to be inadmissible to the United States will need to file either an I-601, Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility, or an I-601A, Application for Provisional Unlawful Presence Waiver. You will want to work with a lawyer to know which form is right for your needs.

Contact Our Experienced Immigration Lawyer in Killeen, TX

Are you currently in the midst of some kind of immigration issue in Texas that is jeopardizing your ability to work and reside in the state? You will want to be sure you speak with J. Sparks Law, PLLC, as soon as possible because our firm will know how to get you the relief you need. We have experience helping people who came to Texas from countries all over the world, so we understand the unique issues that can arise in many of these cases. You can call (512) 877-7482 or contact us online to set up an initial consultation with our Killeen immigration lawyer.

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Genuine advocate with service
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Julie is an honest, trust worthy person and a lawyer, regardless of complex nature of my case, She is patient and receptive in understanding the situation, then researches in depth accompanied with her plethora of legal knowledge to articulate and form the arguments….

DRS

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Frequently Asked Questions

Over the years, we’ve found that there are a handful of very common, yet very important questions people have regarding immigration attorneys. Here are answers to some of our most Frequently Asked Questions.

When someone wants to directly help a family member gain legal status in the U.S., the first step is the filing of an I-130 petition.  Residency, which is the legal status that green card holders have, can only be considered and approved after an I-130 has been approved.

The approval of an I-130 petition means that the family relationship has been established and acknowledged by USCIS.  For example, if you have petitioned a child, an approval means that USCIS has acknowledged that the person you filed for qualifies as your child under the law.  The meaning of “child” can include not only biological children but sometimes stepchildren and adopted minors.

If you have petitioned your spouse, an approval of your I-130 petition indicates that USCIS has both acknowledged that your marriage is legal and that your relationship is genuine.

The person filing the petition must be a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident (LPR).  U.S. citizens qualify to petition more types of relatives than permanent residents.

Permanent residents qualify to file I-130 petitions for:

  • Spouses
  • Children of any age, as long as the child is unmarried

U.S. citizens qualify to file I-130 petitions for:

  • Spouses
  • Children of any age, whether married or unmarried
  • Parents
  • Siblings

The immigrant being petitioned must apply on their own for residency in order to obtain a green card.  That residency application cannot be approved without presenting an approved I-130 petition filed by the immigrant’s LPR or U.S. citizen relative.   Once the I-130 is approved, the immigrant may be granted a green card by applying for an immigrant visa from a consulate outside the U.S. or by filing for an adjustment of status in the U.S.

All immigrants must prove that they are “admissible.”  This means, for example, that those with certain types of criminal convictions in their past may not qualify or may need a waiver.  The same is true for those with past violations of immigration law.

It is important to know whether your family member will qualify to receive residency before filing an I-130 petition.  An experienced immigration attorney can advise you as to whether your loved one will ultimately be able to receive a benefit before you file the case.

The question is far more complex than many realize.  First, everyone must wait for USCIS to process the petition.  USCIS posts its current processing times on its website.  But in addition to that normal processing time, some people must wait years after filing their I-130 petition before they can actually ask for residency.  Others, who are considered “immediate relatives,” do not have to wait in a long line and their process typically moves much faster. “Immediate relatives” are spouses of U.S. citizens, unmarried children (who are under 21) of U.S. citizens, and parents of U.S. citizens age 21 or older.  Many immediate relatives already in the U.S. choose to file the I-130 petition and the residency application at the same time.

A qualified immigration attorney can help you predict how long the entire process could take and can advise you as to whether your immigrant family member can ask for residency immediately or whether they must wait until their date becomes current in the visa bulletin.  Another factor that affects the processing time is whether the immigrant will have their interview at a consulate outside the U.S. or whether they will be interviewed locally inside the U.S.  Only certain immigrants are eligible to use an approved I-130 petition to seek adjustment of status in the U.S.

A 245(i) family-based petition is simply an I-130 petition that was filed on or before April 30, 2001.  “245(i)” is simply the name of the section of law that allows certain immigrants who would not other qualify to still get their residency if they pay a $1,000 fee.

The most common examples relate to immigrants who last entered the U.S. illegally without inspection.  Most immigrants who enter without inspection do not qualify to attend their green card interview in the United States.  Instead, they must leave the U.S. and go back to their country for an interview at a U.S. consulate abroad.  But if someone has an I-130 petition that was filed on their behalf, on or before April 30, 2001, they may qualify to obtain residency and have a green card issued without ever having to leave the U.S.

Some immigrants can qualify under this law even though they weren’t directly petitioned.  For example, some immigrants were children when a U.S. citizen’s aunt or uncle petitioned their parents.  That immigrant child could also qualify for benefits under 245(i) through the petition filed by their aunt or uncle.  Immigrants may also qualify for 245(i) benefits if they were sponsored by an employer on or before April 30, 2001.

Typically, those who live in another country outside of the U.S. will have their residency interview in their country of citizenship.  For those immigrants already in the U.S., some qualify to apply for adjustment of status and have their green card interviews at their local USCIS office.  For others in the U.S., returning to their home country is the only option.

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