There are many ways in which people immigrate to the United States. The most common way to enter legally is through sponsorship by a family member. The second most common way to enter the US legally is through employment-based immigration.
But for many individuals it is not always this simple, and because information is not readily available in our community, many people who can become legal citizens miss out on the opportunity to do so. For example, a resource that many do not know about is that people who are victims of certain crimes can qualify for a U-Visa. The purpose of the U-visa is to give crime victims temporary legal status and permission to work in the United States. This visa can be valid for up to four years, and after three years, a U-visa holder can qualify for a permanent green card. This means that even if you entered the country illegally and even if you have no legal status now, the U-visa is an exception to the general rules and it is designed to help those who qualify. Another variation on the general principles of law is that certain individuals who have been in the United States for long periods of time, and can prove this, could also qualify for a green card through an immigration process called registry.
The most important point is that you should not assume that there is no legal help for your situation. Immigration laws are often harsh, but there are variations and exceptions that could apply to your circumstances. Considering immigration matters can be uncomfortable, but planning ahead can avoid unnecessary problems and expenses, and provide and a sense of security.
An qualified Austin immigration attorney can help find the best immigration solution for you and your family. Calls us at (512) 329-2770 to set up a consultation.