Green Card Through I-485 For Fearful Client
- Applicant: Mr. Estrada
- Nationality: Mexico
- Applying for: Lawful Permanent Resident status
- Case Type: I-485, I-693
- Client living in the shadows for decades.
- Little documentation to support the claim of residency.
- Client fearful he’d be deported if his application failed.
Mr. Estrada had been living in the shadows for decades, always fearful of being deported back to Mexico. He and his wife of twenty years recently had their sixth child, and with every birth, the stakes were raised. If he was found to be living illegally in the United States, Mr. Estrada faced deportation and the prospect of never seeing his children again. At the urging of his wife, he finally decided to step into the sunlight and apply for his I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjustment Status. Shortly after sending in his form I-485 Mr. Estrada received a letter from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) with a request for additional information known as an RFE (Request for Evidence). The government requested proof to establish Mr. Estrada had been living in the United States since December 21, 2000. Unfortunately, that documentation would be hard to produce because he’d been purposely trying not to create a paper trail. Suddenly, the 40-year-old Estrada was feeling overwhelmed by the process and realized he had a high chance of being denied. His first instinct was to return to the shadows, but fortunately, he turned to the immigration professionals at Tsang and Associates instead.
KEYS TO SUCCESS
Not surprisingly, many people don’t fully understand the form I-485 process and the need to have an RFE prepared by legal professionals. Our first step for Mr. Estrada was helping him source the documents proving how long he’d been living, working, and paying taxes in the United States. Preparing an effective response to an RFE is not unlike making a delicious meal. A quality recipe requires quality ingredients combined in the correct order and manner. There is indeed an art to it.
Tsang and Associates wrote a letter to the USCIS in response to the RFE. We included a letter from Mr. Estrada’s employer, Rocky Road Fabrication & Installation certifying his employment since the year 2000. They confirmed he’d been paid in cash until 2003, but provided payment receipts from 2003 to the present day. Although Mr. Estrada testified under oath that he’d entered the U.S. on February 25, 1994, he needed to satisfy the government’s request he’d been physically present since December 21, 2001. Fortunately, the Code of Federal Regulation permits alternative types of evidence and not only paycheck stubs and taxes to satisfy the physical presence requirement section 245 (i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. These may include official documents, non-governmental records, like rental receipts, as well as evidence of physical presence in the U.S. of other members of the then-existing family unit and dated receipts of any sort. Tsang and Associates assisted Mr. Estrada in sourcing and collecting the following documents in support of his physical presence: the birth certificates of his six children from 1996 -2015, rent receipts, utility bills, Vigo money transfer receipts, an Employee Development Department acknowledgement letter, and pay stubs from a previous job from 3/20/1998 – 4/2/1999. The letter provided “incontrovertible evidence” Mr. Estrada was physically in the U.S. on December 21, 2000. Tsang and Associates requested the USCIS kindly adjudicate the case in Mr. Estrada’s favor and approve his I-485 application.
The letter drafted by Tsang and Associates turned out to be the perfect recipe for success. Mr. Estrada promptly received his green card and is enjoying life out of the shadows with his wife and six children.
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