The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) provides foreign nationals opportunities to obtain lawful permanent residence in the United States. To do so, they must go through the immigration process, which includes providing all of their information through numerous forms.
For example, Form I-360 Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant is designed specifically for certain types of foreign nationals, including widows, widowers, special immigrants, and Amerasians. You can learn more about Form I-360 and receive help with the immigration process when you hire an immigration lawyer from New Frontier Immigration Law.
Who Is Considered a Special Immigrant?
Special immigrants are outlined in category EB-4 of employment-based green cards. They are a varied selection of people eligible for visas under US Immigration Law 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(27). Such individuals include:
- Long-time US government employees
- Iraqi or Afghani nationals who supported the US armed forces as translators
- Workers for recognized religious organizations
- Juveniles dependent on US courts
- Any national asked to work on behalf of or for the US government in Afghanistan
- NATO civilian employees
- Retired officers or employees of international organizations living in the United States
- Medical graduates living in the United States for a significant amount of time
- Panama Canal employees
- Iraqi nationals working on behalf of or for the US government in Iraq
- People coming to work in the United States as broadcasters for the International Broadcasting Bureau (IBB)
- Individuals who served honorably on active US military duty for 12 or more years after October 15, 1978
Amerasian Immigration Petitions
Amerasian immigration petitions were created to acknowledge the US immigration rights of children of military service members in the Vietnam and Korean wars.
To qualify, Amerasians must provide proof that they were fathered by a US citizen and born in one of the designated countries—including Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Kampuchea, or Korea—during a specific eligible time frame. In addition, Amerasian immigrants must have a permanent resident or US citizen sponsor.
Widow and Widower of US Citizen Immigration Petitions
Widowers and widows of US citizens may be able to use Form I-360 to petition for a green card. However, they must not have been legally separated or divorced from the US citizen at the time of their death.
In addition, widowers and widows cannot have remarried and must file their Form I-360 petition within two years of the US citizen’s death. If a US citizen has already filled out Form I-130, Form I-360 will not be required—Form I-130 will automatically convert to a Form I-360.
Battered Spouses, Children, and Parent Immigration Petitions
Immigrants who are victims of cruelty or extreme violence at the hands of US citizens or lawful permanent residents may be able to petition for a green card via Form I-360. Be prepared to show proof of:
- Relationship status
- Good moral character
- The hardship you would face if your application was denied
The Process for Submitting Form I-360
It is important to keep in mind that when filling out Form I-360, there are multiple sections that may be left blank if they do not apply to you.
In Part One of Form I-360, you will provide USCIS with your most basic contact information. This should also include your Social Security number if you have a right to work in the United States. Note that you may not have a USCIS online account number unless you have previously dealt with USCIS.
Part Two goes over your eligibility status, while Part Three requests additional personal information. In Part Four of Form I-360, be prepared to designate a US consulate where you could be interviewed and processed. Even if you live in the US, you should designate a US consulate as a backup.
Additional Information to Provide
Do not forget to fill out Part Five of Form I-360 if you have a spouse and children. It does not matter what category you are applying in—your spouse and children should be included in your application. Even if they are not able to get green cards at the same time as you do, you may be able to petition for them at a later date as long as you include them on your initial application.
The remaining sections may not be necessary, depending on the details of your case. You should go over these sections with your attorney and ensure the appropriate ones are filled out accurately and in full. You want to include any supporting documentation and information to ensure that your application is not delayed.
Form I-360 Fees
Fees are not required with every Form I-360 position. However, according to USCIS, fees can amount to as much as $435 as of 2022.
You may not be required to pay a fee with Form I-360 if you fall into any one of the following categories:
- Afghani or Iraqi nationals who worked on behalf of or for the US government in their respective locations
- Special immigrant juveniles
- Self-petitioning abused or battered spouses, children, or parents
If you are unsure whether you need to pay a fee with your Form I-360, our team will determine this for you after reviewing your case.
What Happens Next?
Make sure you make a copy of everything you send to USCIS. Do not send original documents, as they are at risk of being destroyed.
Once your petition has been approved, you will have the opportunity to file your application for a green card or permanent resident status. If you are already a US citizen, you may be eligible for an adjustment of status by sending in the appropriate application with your Form I-360. This way, you do not need to wait for it to be approved.
If you are seeking a green card abroad as opposed to within the United States, USCIS will need to communicate with the National Visa Center (NVC) after accepting your Form I-360. Your local US consulate will provide you with additional instructions regarding what your next steps should be.
If you have questions or concerns regarding how you will deal with the USCIS, NCV, or your local US Consulate, our immigration attorneys are here to help.
Contact Us to Hire an Immigration Attorney Today
If you are having trouble with Form I-360 or any other aspect of the US immigration process, reach out to our team at New Frontier Immigration Law today.
Our legal professionals are here to help you get through this often complex process. You can call to request a strategic session with our team now.