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All You Need to Know About the I-485 Form

If you want help filing I-485 Form, get in touch with the Do Law Office. We can guide you through the application process. Call us today.

What Is Form I-485?

If you entered the US on a non-immigrant visa or by other lawful means, you might be eligible to transition from your current immigration status to lawful permanent residence.

For this to happen, you need to go through the adjustment of status process. Form I-485 is the principal document you’ll need to kickstart the procedure.

 Formally known as the Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, Form I-485 is an official document issued by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Its primary purpose is for you to demonstrate that you meet the legal requirements to adjust your immigration status and become a lawful permanent resident (green card holder).

For the most part, the success of your application depends on the information you provide in this form. As such, you must complete the form accurately. The information provided below discusses several essential aspects of the form to help you avoid costly mistakes. But feel free to seek legal counsel if you need personalized information in this area.

Who Can File Form I-485?

Generally, individuals who can file Form I-485 fall within the following categories:

Family-Based Applicants

Those in this category are eligible for a spouse visa or green card because of their close family relationship with a US citizen or permanent resident. They include spouses, children, and parents of US citizens or green card holders.

Employment-Based Applicants

Individuals in this category are eligible for a green card because they have a valid job offer and their US employer has filed an employment-based immigrant petition on their behalf.

Humanitarian-Based Applicants

Individuals and their dependents who are eligible for a green card under the various humanitarian interventions belong to this group. They include:

  • Refugees
  • Asylees
  • Victims of abuse or human trafficking.

There may be others who qualify to use this form to begin the adjustment of status process. If you still have questions about your qualification, contact a skilled immigration lawyer for answers.

Requirements To File Form I-485

Beyond being eligible for a green card, a Form -I-485 applicant has to meet certain requirements. These requirements vary depending on the applicant’s eligibility category but generally include the following:

  • There must be an approved immigrant visa petition in the applicant’s favor, such as Form I-130 for family-based immigrants and I-140 for employment-based immigrants.
  • The applicant must be physically present in the United States.
  • The applicant must not be subject to any ground of inadmissibility under immigration law. Some of those grounds include a criminal history, health-related issues, or prior immigration violations.

There may be other requirements that you’ll need to fulfill that are peculiar to your situation. Consider getting an immigration attorney to look into your case and determine the specific conditions for your eligibility.

Completing Your Form I-485

Completing Form I-485 requires careful attention to detail. The form consists of several sections where you’ll need to provide your personal information, immigration history, and details of your eligibility in black ink.

According to the USCIS filing instructions, you also need to sign your form in the signature column. Otherwise, it will be rejected.

Providing accurate and up-to-date information at this point is crucial. Inaccuracies may result in delays or potential issues with the application. You can seek help from an Immigration Lawyer if you’re having trouble completing the form properly.

Supporting Documents for the I-485 Form

There are certain documents that must be submitted with Form I-485. These documents verify the information you included in your form and establish your qualification to adjust your status. They include the following:

  •  Your birth certificate (this does not apply to asylum and refugee applicants)

  • Passport-style photographs with a whitish background 

  • A photocopy of your government-issued identification, such as your travel passport 

  • Evidence of your recent immigration history

  • Proof that your entry into the US was lawful 

  • Affidavit of support or confirmation of a bonafide job offer (if applicable)

  • Certified police and court records if you have a criminal history

  • Medical examination reports and vaccination records

  • Evidence of an approved immigrant petition (if applicable)

  • Form I-765- Application for Employment Authorization (if applicable).

You also need to pay the filing fee approved for your category and submit evidence of payment with your application. Fee waivers may be available for individuals who meet certain financial criteria. Speak with a skilled immigration attorney to clarify if you’re eligible for a waiver.

Filing Your Form I-485

Once all your documents are in place, you need to package them all and send them to the approved mailing address. There are different mailing addresses for I-485 applicants depending on the nature of their application. Sending your documents to the wrong mailing address can lead to processing delays. Hence it is important that you identify which one applies in your case before you send your documents.

You can ask an attorney to help organize and mail your application to avoid mistakes.


Get Help With Your I-485 Application at Do Law Office

At Do Law Office, we understand the difficulties of the immigration process and the high standards of accuracy required for immigration forms. We aim to help you navigate the process and achieve your goals without stress.

With our immigration law experience, we can help you complete, organize and avoid errors in your I-485 application. If you’ve already begun the process, but you’ve hit a snag, we can review your application and take positive steps to rectify the issue so you can move forward.

We offer top-notch immigration services and quality representation to all our clients. Do not hesitate to contact us for help with all your US immigration concerns.

Contact Us


4500 Satellite Blvd.
Suite 1160
Duluth, GA 30096


Tel: 678-224-8940
Fax: 678-224-8967

4500 Satellite Blvd Ste 1160

Get the legal advice, counsel, and representation you need