Under LIFE Act which was enacted on December 21, 2000 and thereby amended Section 245(i) of INA (Immigration and Nationality Act), aliens who are in the U.S. but (a) are out of status, (b) had entered the U.S. without inspection, or (c) had violated their non-immigrant status, can still adjust status and obtain permanent residence without returning to their home country, if they meet certain criteria.
1. An immigrant petition has been or is being filed for you, and your priority date is current now (i.e., an immigrant visa in your category is immediately available).
2. You are a principal or derivative beneficiary of an immigrant petition (I-130, I-140, I-360, or I-526) or a Labor Certificate application, which was filed on or before April 30, 2001 and was approvable when it was filed.
- If the petition or LC application was filed after January 14, 1998 and on or before April 30, 2001, then you must have been physically present in the U.S. on December 21, 2000.
- If you were physically in the U.S. on December 21, 2000, then the petition or LC application must have been filed after January 14, 1998 and on or before April 30, 2001.
3. The petition described in #1 and the petition or LC application described in #2 need not be based on the same ground.
4. You have to pay a penalty of $1,000 when you file your I-485 application to adjust status.