Adjustment of status (AOS) is the process used by a foreign national who is physically present in the United States to become a lawful permanent resident (LPR). AOS is an alternative to obtaining an immigrant visa through a U.S. consulate abroad, a process known as “consular processing” (CP). Depending on processing times at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) service centers, AOS may be preferred by foreign nationals over CP because: (1) it avoids the expense and inconvenience of travel to the home country; (2) AOS applicants, including dependent family members, are entitled to employment authorization and permission to travel while the AOS application is pending; (3) employment-based AOS applicants receive job mobility (i.e., “portability”) benefits provided under recent legislation; and (4) there are more options for reconsideration of an unfavorable decision by the USCIS.
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