6. Is an Adjustment Applicant Allowed to Travel Outside the U.S. While His or Her Application for Permanent Residence is Pending?
Yes, but AOS applicants must obtain advance permission to return to the United States if they are traveling outside the United States. This advance permission is called Advance Parole and an applicant must file form I-131 to apply for Advance Parole.
NOTE: If applicants do not obtain Advance Parole before they leave the country, they will have effectively abandoned their adjustment of status application and may not be permitted to return to the United States.
7. How Long Does it Take to Receive the Green Card?
It takes approximately 5-8 months depending on USCIS workload.
NOTE: The average processing time will vary depending on which USCIS office has jurisdiction over the processing of the adjustment application.
8. Can Applicants Appeal if Their Application for Adjustment of Status is Denied?
Generally, only AOS applications based on a marriage which took place while the foreign national was in removal proceedings (which are appealed to the Board of Immigration Appeals), or those based on Section 586 of Public Law 106-429, adjustment of status for certain nationals of Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos (which are appealed to the Administrative Appeals Office) can be appealed.
Applicants in removal proceedings may appeal within 30 days after the immigration judge decides to remove them from the country. After the appeal form and required fee are processed, the appeal will be referred to the Board of Immigration Appeals in Washington, D.C.
Although denials of AOS applications cannot be appealed, a Motion to Reconsider/Reopen the application may be submitted to the Service Center that rendered the decision. After submitting the requisite form and filing fee and any supporting documentation and/or brief, the Service Center that rendered the original decision will review the application and affirm the previous decision or move to approve the application.
9. What does “Aging Out” Mean for the Purposes of Adjustment of Status?
“Aging Out” occurs when a beneficiary or derivative who was under 21 when the original petition was filed turns 21 before the adjustment of status application can be filed and effectively “ages out” of his or eligibility to file an AOS (or complete consular processing).