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What Is the Adjustment of Status?

Adjustment of Status Explained

Adjustment of Status allows a foreigner to obtain a Green card (permanent residency). The adjustment of status enables the applicant to legally work in the U.S. and travel authorization while the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) completes processing their application and issues a Green card.

The Adjustment of Status is a request to USCIS that you wish to change your current immigration status to a permanent resident. If you prove you qualify, you will be issued a Green card.

Marriage Tip

It is important to remember the burden of proof is on you to show you qualify and that this is a valid marriage.


One of the most common ways to be eligible for the Adjustment of Status is when a foreigner enters the U.S. legally and marries a U.S. citizen. Once they are married, they can file for the Adjustment of Status. One of the best features of filing for your Green card in this way is that there are no quotas and the waiting period is relatively short compared to other immigration visas.

When applying for the Adjustment of Status you must prove:

  1. Your marriage is bonafide.
  2. There was no fraudulent intent when entering the U.S.
  3. You are living in the U.S. legally currently.
  4. You can legally marry each other.
  5. Your spouse has sufficient means to support you.
  6. You have no criminal convictions.

Read the section on Supporting Documents to learn what documentation will provide sufficient proof to meet the requirements for the Adjustment of Status application.

Supporting Documents

One of the most important aspects of your Adjustment of Status is the supporting documents you include with your application. The supporting documents will show how you meet all the requirements for the Adjustment of Status so you are eligible for the Green card.

Here are some of the essential documents you should include when filing your Adjustment of Status:

  1. Marriage certificate
  2. Tax return
  3. Pay stubs
  4. Birth or Naturalization certificates
  5. Passport copies
  6. Medical form
  7. Passport pictures
  8. Cash, Check or Money Order for USCIS filing fees

For a complete list click here to download your Adjustment of Status Checklist.

You must show how you or your spouse have enough funds to support you. You must show stable income more than 125% of the US. Dept of Health and Human Services’ poverty guidelines.

Processing Times

The Adjustment of Status has one of the shortest processing times. Your Adjustment of Status application should be processed within 4-5 months and you should receive your Green card shortly thereafter. You will get employment and travel authorization within 30-90 days of submitting your application.

Processing Fees

The fees listed here are the fees charged by USCIS. The main fee is $1070 USD when filing Form I-485. Biometrics fee is $85 USD. If filing Form I-130 with your Adjustment of Status add another $420 USD.

Option 1

How to Apply – Do It Yourself

Due to the high lawyer costs, many people decide to apply for the Adjustment of Status themselves. This is one option you can choose. But be careful when doing it yourself.

The three main issues with doing it yourself are:

  • No one to answer your questions.
  • No way to verify your application for mistakes.
  • A mistake can cause delays of 4+ months

If you wish to complete the Adjustment of Status process yourself, complete the correct USCIS forms and include your supporting documents.

Remember, the Immigration Officer is attempting to determine if this is a bonafide marriage. Provide sufficient evidence with your Adjustment of Status application to prove it is.

Option 2

How to Apply – Online Visa Streamline System

Use the online Visa Streamline System to complete your Adjustment of Status application with no high lawyer fees. You will:

  • Avoid Confusion. Have all your questions answered.
  • Legal Support and Avoid red flags. A lawyer is assigned to you and you get a strategy session with them.
  • Avoid worries. All the USCIS government forms are completed for you.
  • Easy. We also complete the USCIS forms required at the Consulate.
  • Fast. We have an online system for you to log into.
  • Be Prepared. Learn the key marriage interview tips to have your interview go smoothly.
  • No Risk. We offer a money back guarantee.
  • More affordable than a full service lawyer. Only 2 payments of $374.

Rather than spending months learning and attempting to complete your Adjustment of Status application. Complete your application using the Visa Streamline System with no worries, no stress and no delays.

Option 3

How to Apply – Hire an Immigration Lawyer

You also have the option to hire an experienced immigration lawyer to complete your Adjustment of Status application. With this option you will receive:

  • Full support and access to your lawyer during the immigration process.
  • Your application completed for you.

For those who desire complete support, should look at hiring an immigration lawyer. Price for an Adjustment of Status application starts at $1800 USD.
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