Lee & Garasia, LLC
  • Tel: 732-516-1717
  • Toll free: 888-404-5876
Experience, Accessibility, and Excellence for Over 20 Years
  • "Lee and Garasia are excellent lawyers, punctual and professional. They are dedicated to going above and beyond the usual level of service to meet your client's needs. Their staff is very knowledgeable, friendly and polite. I would highly... recommend this firm to anyone." Read More

  • "I would definitely recommend Mr.Lee and Garasia as an immigration attorney because they did a great job with my case i.e. of Adjustment of Status (i-485). Mr. Lee helped us in each and every detailed information and prepared to the best of it. It was all well done and would like to appreciate." Read More

  • "I would like to thank my lawyer Mr Lee & Garasia and the staff for all immense help and patience throughout this entire process, I really appreciate your constant attention to my case, as well to my questions and my concerns. You've really made this process much more comprehensive to me, which I greatly appreciate." Read More

  • "Mr. Lee and Ms. Garasia did a great job with my renewal of my permanent residence application. They help prepare the paperwork with such a great attention to details and accuracy. I will recommend the law firm every time." Read More

  • "Mr. Lee did a great job with the renewal of my permanent residence application. My case was very time sensitive and they worked really fast on my case with great detail and accuracy. I will recommend the law firm every time." Read More

  • "I would recommend Attorney Paris Lee for anybody who needs immigration consultation. Mr. Lee is THE lawyer who respects and cares clients. Mr. Lee is professional and honest. Bottom line, preparation for the results and NO BS!" Read More

  • "Stalin - Lee did a wonderful job, Got my wife her visa in one year. He is extremely helpful and knowledgeable. I would highly recommend him for all your immigration needs." Read More

  • "Hello. I appoint him as my immigration lawyer and that way he solved my cases was truly amazing. He was so honest and knowledgeable for his work.He solved my all family imigration issues and because of his effort we were able to get done our immigration work done successful. Thank you lee and garasia." Read More

  • "Lee & Garasia stand for accountability and responsibility. They are reliable, honest and are always constructively looking for a solution.. A big thanks :)" Read More

Will My Priority Date Be Canceled If My Son Or Daughter Marries? | Family Immigration Issues

One major area of confusion and frustration concerns priority dates for family based cases. The assignment of a priority date is extremely important in estimating when a preference based family case is ready to be adjudicated by USCIS or the Department of State. Ordinarily, it is pretty straightforward: one looks at the priority date assigned to one's case, and then consults the latest Visa Bulletin to determine how far off one's case is. Things get confusing, however, when a beneficiary's or petitioner's status changes. For example, what happens if a beneficiary gets married? Or what happens if the petitioner becomes a United States Citizen? Depending on the circumstances, a priority date may be preserved; in other cases, a priority date may be lost. Fortunately, in many situations, an automatic conversion occurs. For instance, if a child of a USC marries, the case is automatically converted from an F-1 preference based case to an F-3 case, which is for married children of US Citizens. The priority date remains unchanged, resulting in the married adult child being able to immigrate with his/her spouse and children under the age of 21 without having to have an entirely new I-130 filed. Another common scenario where a conversion also occurs is when a petitioner becomes a citizen after having filed for an adult child over 21 as a green card holder. After naturalization, the beneficiary's classification is automatically changed from F2B to F1.

Contrast this with the following scenario: a permanent resident files for an unmarried child over the age of 21. This would place the beneficiary squarely within the F2B category. However, while the case is pending, the beneficiary marries. Subsequent to the marriage, the petitioner naturalizes and becomes a United States Citizen. Will the beneficiary be able to convert from F2B to F3 with the same priority date? Unfortunately, no. In this case, where the marriage precedes the naturalization, the beneficiary essentially took him/herself out of the F2B category because, unfortunately, there is no category for married children of lawful permanent residents. On the other hand, if the petitioner naturalized before the beneficiary married, then the priority date would have been preserved and the case converted from an F2B case to an F3.

This just goes to illustrate how fact and case sensitive these types of matters can be. Given the stakes, it is critical to ascertain the consequences of certain status changes before the changes actually occur. It can mean the difference between keeping a case intact and practically canceling the case and having to start all over again. For preference based cases, this can potentially mean additional waiting times of more than 10 years; what's worse, there may be no applicable category in which to file as a result of the status change. For more information on automatic conversions, preservation of priority dates, and upgrades, please contact our office.

The foregoing is general information or opinion only. It is not intended to be a substitute for legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship. If you need legal advice, please consult with an attorney.

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PROFESSIONAL RECOGNITION

    • The National Advocates | Top 100 Lawyers
    • Rated by Super Lawyers | Angie Garasia | 5 Years
    • Avvo Rating 10.0 | Superb
    • Client Distinction Award martindale.com | 2016 Martindale-Hubbell Client Distinction Award
    • New Jersey State Bar Association | Paris Lee Chair - Immigration Section 2015-2016
    • Nationaly Recognized | Newsweek Nationwide Showcase | Top Attorneys 2013
    • New Jersey Chapter | American Immigration Lawyers Association | Angie Garasia | Chapter Chair 2015-2016
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Lee & Garasia, LLC
190 State Route 27
Edison, NJ 08820

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