Applying for a Green Card After a Visa Overstay

Many people fail to realize the serious consequences that they face when they overstay a visa. Once the deadline has passed, is it too late? Have you lost your chance to get a green card?

An experienced immigration attorney at American Dream™ Law Office can help you apply for a waiver that could enable you to get a green card despite the violation. However, you need to take the right steps to succeed.

Why a Visa Overstay is Such a Problem

If you enter on a visitor visa or student visa and stay past the end of your approved visit, you lose your legal immigration status. Your presence in the country becomes illegal.

Remember that it is possible to overstay a visa even if the expiration date has not passed. When the purpose for a visit has been accomplished, then the visa term is over. Also, if the “admit until” date on Form I-94 lists an earlier date, then remaining past that date could be considered an overstay.

Violating the terms of a visa can make you subject to removal proceedings. It can also prevent you from being eligible for a green card and prevent you from obtaining even a temporary visa to re-enter the country. The longer you wait to take action, the more problems your status can cause.

Handling a Visa Overstay

An experienced immigration lawyer will know the types of relief available based on the terms of your visa and the circumstances involved with your overstay. You could be eligible for a waiver of inadmissibility or forgiveness of the violation. You might qualify for relief on the basis of:

  • Hardship to immediate relatives who are lawful permanent residents
  • Pending applications for asylum, adjustments, extensions or changes
  • Family relationship to a U.S. citizen
  • Status as a minor or part of the Family Unity program
  • Victim status due to criminal activity or domestic violence

The important thing is to take action quickly. It looks far better to admit a problem up front than to wait until you are forced to raise arguments in defense of removal. The sooner you work to address the issue, the more time your attorney will have to gather evidence in support of your claim.

Waivers of Inadmissibility

A waiver of inadmissibility is the formal term for a legal request for a pardon of a rule violation that makes you ineligible to return to the U.S. The process is complex, so it is a good idea to work with an attorney with experience successfully obtaining waivers for individuals who have committed similar overstay violations.

American Dream™ Law Office Helps Green Card Applicants with Visa Violations

Mistakes involving immigration law can be costly, but we don’t want them to destroy your dreams. The dedicated team at American Dream Law Office fights to help applicants get their green cards even when they need to overcome serious challenges such as visa overstays and other immigration law violations.

To schedule a strategy session and learn more about your options for getting your green card, contact American Dream™ Law Office today.