If you have a pending application for a green card and the U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident (LPR) petitioner died, your green card application may well be approved and you should contact a NY Immigration Lawyer to discuss this matter. Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) § 204(l) applies to petitions and applications adjudicated on or after October 28, 2009. This is the date that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) decided that INA § 204(l) affects your pending petition and green card application. Typically, to continue your green card application, you must be a relative or a spouse of the deceased U.S. citizen or LPR. In addition, the U.S. citizen or LPR must have filed an Immigrant Petition on your behalf with the USCIS.
Your NY Immigration Lawyer must prove that you:
• have been residing in the U.S. on the date that the U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident (LPR) petitioner died;
• the U.S. was your primary residence; and
• you have a substitute sponsor who is a U.S. citizen or national or LPR.
How to Benefit from INA § 204(l) Relief
If you have an Immigrant Visa Petition or Green Card application that was pending and the petitioner died, you must make a written request to have USCIS apply section 204(l) of the INA to your case. If the petition was approved before your relative died, the approval is automatically revoked. Your Immigration Lawyer must therefore contact the USCIS and request a benefit under INA § 204(l). If the USCIS grants you INA § 204(l) relief, it will reinstates the approval of the petition. This allows you to continue the process of applying for the green card. There is no form or fee to ask for § 204(l) relief. A written request must be made to the USCIS and sent together with supporting evidence claiming your eligibility. Immigration laws are complex and it is recommended that you contact an Immigration Lawyer to assist you in this matter.
INA § 204(l) relief does not require you to have been physically present in the U.S. at the time of your relative’s death. INA § 204(l) relief is subject to the discretion of the USCIS. USCIS may decline to provide relief if it determines that such relief would not be in the public interest.
Other eligible immigrants include the following:
• The derivative beneficiary of an I-140 Immigrant Petition when the principal beneficiary died;
• The beneficiary of a pending I-730, Refugee/Asylee Relative Petition, and the petitioner, primary asylum seeker died;
• A T or U nonimmigrant visa holder in a derivative classification (T-2, T-3, T-4, T-5, U-2, U-3, U-4, U-5) where the principal (T-1 or U-1) visa holder died; and
• A derivative asylee (AS-2 or AS-3) where the principal asylee (AS-1) died.
What Can a NY Immigration Lawyer Do for You?
A NY immigration lawyer can help you prepare and file the application under INA § 204(l) and make sure that your case is handled professionally and submitted to the USCIS with the right evidence.
Feiner & Lavy, Attorneys at Law, are experienced immigration Lawyers in NY. For assistance with applying for a green card under INA § 204(l), feel free to contact us at: (212) 571-9200.