Immigration through Adjustment of Immigrant Status -P1

Note: Since April 30, 2001, you cannot qualify for 245(i) benefits, but you may be eligible if your visa qualification petition was previously filed. See the "Who is Eligible" section below.
Our immigration laws allow qualified individuals to enter the United States as lawful permanent residents ("green card" holders) after they obtain immigrant visas from a consulate or embassy outside the United States or, for many immigrants already lawfully in the United States, through a process called "adjustment of status." If you entered the United States unlawfully, if you entered with permission but did not stay in lawful status, or if you worked without permission, you normally would have to leave the United States in order to apply for an immigrant visa. Special rules under section 245(i) may allow you to apply to adjust status without leaving the United States.
You might need section 245(i) if you:
  • Entered the U.S. without being inspected by an Immigration official.
  • Stayed in the U.S. longer than allowed by Immigration.
  • Entered the U.S. as a worker on an aircraft or ship (crewman).
  • Entered the U.S. as a "Transit Without Visa."
  • Failed to continuously maintain a lawful status since your entry into the US.
  • Worked in the U.S. without Immigration permission.
  • Entered as an "S" nonimmigrant (relates to witnesses about criminal or terrorism matters).
  • Are seeking a work-related visa and are out of status at the time of filing the application to adjust status (Form I-485).
  • Worked in the U.S. while being an "unauthorized alien."
NOTE: There are some groups that may not need to use section 245(i).
  • The spouse or unmarried minor child of a U.S. citizen or the parent of a U.S. citizen child at least 21 years of age if he/she was inspected and lawfully admitted to the United States, but subsequently overstayed his/her authorized admission or worked without permission, may apply for adjustment of status under section 245(a) and does not need to use section 245(i).
  • Certain persons who are eligible for certain employment-based immigrant visas and who were inspected and lawfully admitted to the United States, but have not violated their status or worked without permission for more than 180 days, do not have to apply for adjustment of status under section 245(i). They may be able to use section 245(k).
Who is Eligible?
(Note: This program ended April 2001, but certain applicants may still be eligible. See below.)
You are eligible if one of the reasons above prevent you from using the regular section 245 provision AND:
    1.You are eligible to receive an immigrant visa and are admissible to the United States for permanent residence; 
    2.An immigrant visa is immediately available at the time your application is filed;
    3.Your visa petition or application for labor certification that would qualify you to become an immigrant was filed on or before April 30, 2001, was approvable when filed; AND
    4.If your petition or application was filed after January 1, 1998, then you must also prove that you were in the U.S. on December 21, 2000.