Immigration Law

Naturalization and U.S. Citizenship

There is truly no greater moment for an immigration lawyer than to witness a client taking the Oath of Allegiance and therefore becoming a naturalized United States citizen. At the Galloway Law Firm of Ponte Vedra Beach, PLLC, we are dedicated to assisting our naturalization clients prepare for the naturalization interview. Our mission is to prepare accurate paperwork and to examine the supporting documents carefully before they are submitted to USCIS. By doing this, our clients can focus of studying for the civics, reading and writing portions of the naturalization interview with the peace of mind that their paperwork is completely satisfactory. Additionally, our goal is also to assist our clients obtain proof of U.S. Citizenship in the event that they are unable to locate previously issued documents or when certain documentation was never obtained. Our services include assistance with applications for certificates of citizenship and naturalization as well as U.S. Passport applications. 

Adjustment of Status to Permanent Resident (Spouse)

One of the most complicated aspects of U.S. Immigration Law is helping a family member adjust their status to a lawful permanent resident. At the Galloway Law Firm of Ponte Vedra Beach, PLLC, we have assisted many spouses of U.S. Citizens adjust their status to a lawful permanent resident. The law currently provides an exception for unlawful presence (i.e. visa overstay) to those who have had the questionable fortune of falling in love and getting married after their temporary visa status expired. This can be a scary time for both spouses because everything is riding on getting their immigration situation on track. While there are exceptions to this rule (i.e. unlawful entry), it is often possible to help the spouse acquire conditional permanent residence and thus take away the burden of not having status or employment authorization. 

Family Based Immigration

The foundation of every immigration law practice is usually Family Based Immigration. Congress has categorized family relationships between the petitioner and the primary beneficiary. The U.S. Government processes family based immigration petitions based on the category of the visa being sought. There are specific rules for derivative beneficiaries as well as for unmarried children who are turning 21 years old . Some petitions many be filed at USCIS International Offices while other petitions must be filed in the United States at a USCIS Lockbox Facility. Once the petition is approved, an immigrant visa application is generated at the National Visa Center. The last stop is the U.S. Embassy or Consulate at the beneficiaries country of chargeability where an immigrant visa interview is conducted by a Consular Officer. At the Galloway Law Firm of Ponte Vedra Beach, PLLC, our mission to give our clients the peace of mind that a professional immigration lawyer will handle their relative's case from start to finish and handle all aspects of the case in a timely and organized manner. We have assisted clients with family based immigration cases in many countries and have coordinated with several U.S. Embassies and Consulates located in Africa, North and South America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East. 

Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence

Perhaps the most unique and often misunderstood requirement in U.S. Immigration Law is the Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence (Form I-751). For spouses who have been married for less than two years prior to obtaining permanent residence through family based immigration, they must submit paperwork with USCIS within the 90 day window before their two year conditional residence card expires. This can become a stressful time for families because their marital relationship is being reevaluated by USCIS. Complications can arise when the spouses have separated or have become divorced. At the Galloway Law Firm of Ponte Vedra Beach, PLLC, our priority is treating our clients with dignity as we evaluate evidence and counsel them through this stressful time. We often include affidavits from friends and family as supporting evidence. The processing times for the Form I-751 are somewhat lengthly and it is sometimes appropriate to file an application for naturalization while the Petition to Remove Conditions of Residence is still pending in order to streamline the immigration process. 

Fiancée / Fiancé Visas

K-1 Visas allows the Fiancée (female) and Fiancé (male) of a United States Citizen for Permanent Resident to enter the United States for the limited purpose of getting married within 90 days. The fiancée / fiancé may not marry anyone other than the petitioner and they are not allowed to leave the United States during the 90 day period. If they marry the petitioner, the fiancée / fiancé is eligible for work authorization and conditional permanent residence. At the Galloway Law Firm of Ponte Vedra Beach, PLLC, we understand that many of our K-1 Visa clients are extremely excited about getting their future and they want their immigration process to be completed without delay. Our goal is the same as our clients and we prepare every K-1 Visa Petition with the appropriate amount of supporting evidence. K-1 Visas are unique because they are forwarded from USCIS to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate without being processed at the National Visa Center. Once the K-1 Visa Petition (Form I-129F) is approved, our firm immediately begins working toward scheduling the visa interview at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.  

Employment Based Immigration

Employment based immigration consist of a variety of business-related immigration procedures for petitioning companies, investors, executives, skilled and unskilled workers. EB-1 Extraordinary Individuals may self-petition as long as they can prove that they have risen to the top of their field of sciences, arts, education, business and athletics. Additionally, employment based visa holders such as L-1A Executives and H1-B Skilled Workers may be eligible for adjustment of status to permanent resident when the corresponding requirements have been satisfied. EB-5 Investor Visas are generally available to wealthy individuals whose goal is to make a one million dollar investment in a job creating enterprise in the United States. The minimum investment is five hundred thousand dollars for investments made within a targeted employment area (TEA). For EB-5 Investor Visas, the petitioner must be prepared to submit a source of funds report to show that the origin of the funds came from a legitimate source of income. At the Galloway Law Firm of Ponte Vedra Beach, PLLC, we have assisted businesses, executives, investors and extraordinary individuals with employment based immigration cases.