United States Immigration Series Post No. 6 Glossary of Terms in US Immigration Law

Francisco A. Laguna & Annapurna Nandyal

Today we continue with our series on US immigration laws by providing a glossary of terms.

  1. Admission number or I-94 Form: The I-94 Form is an arrival/departure record issued to foreign visitors entering United States. An 11 digit number found on I-94 is known as admission number.
  1. Advance Parole: A document that allows certain aliens permission to re-enter the US without an immigrant or nonimmigrant visa after traveling abroad
  1. Alien: Any person not a citizen of United States
  1. US Consulate-General in Hamburg, Germany Photo Credit: Garitzko via Wikimedia Commons

    US Consulate-General in Hamburg, Germany
    Photo Credit: Garitzko via Wikimedia Commons

    Applicant: A non-resident alien who is applying for a visa

  1. Approval Notice: A form notice issued by USCIS indicating that a request for a stay extension of change of status has been approved
  1. AOS / Adjustment of Status: A procedure where an individual who has been admitted to the US as a non-immigrant changes his/her status to legal permanent resident
  1. Beneficiary: The individual named in a visa or adjustment of status petition to the USCIS
  1. BIA: Board of Immigration Appeals
  1. CBP / US Customs and Border Protection: The federal agency charged with securing US borders from illegal trade and entry
  1. DACA / Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals: A program allowing individuals who arrived in US before the age of 16 to remain in the country and apply for a work permit, provided they meet certain criteria
  1. DHS / Department of Homeland Security: DHS is comprised of USCIS, CBP and ICE, all agencies that regulate the flow of immigrants, visitors and workers to the US


  1. DOL: US Department of Labor


  1. DOS: US Department of State


  1. DS-156: Application Form for Nonimmigrant Visa


  1. DS 230: Application for Immigrant visa


  1. D/S: Duration of status


  1. EAD: Employment Authorization Document


  1. US Interest Section in Havana, Cuba Photo Credit: Stevenbedrick via Wikimedia Commons

    US Interest Section in Havana, Cuba
    Photo Credit: Stevenbedrick via Wikimedia Commons

    EOS: Extension of Nonimmigrant Stay


  1. E-verify: Federally created online system allowing employers to verify a worker’s work eligibility against federal databases


  1. Fiscal Year: For the US government, the fiscal year begins on October 1 and ends September 30 the following year


  1. I-9: Form I-9 is known as the Employment Eligibility Verification Form administered by USCIS; employers are required to complete a Form I-9 for every new hire to verify the new worker’s identity and work authorization in the US


  1. I-20: F-1 / M-1 Student Acceptance Form


  1. I-129: Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker


  1. I-129F: Petition for Fiancé / Fiancée


  1. I-130: Petition for Alien Relative to Obtain Green Card


  1. I-131: Application for Travel Document


  1. I-140: Petition for Employment-Based Green Card Application for Alien Workers


  1. I-485: Application for Adjustment of Status


  1. I-539: Application for Change of Nonimmigrant status or to Extend Nonimmigrant Stay


  1. US Consulate-General in Istanbul, Turkey

    US Consulate-General in Istanbul, Turkey

    I-551: Legal Permanent Resident Card (Green Card)


  1. I-765: Application for Employment Authorization Document


  1. ICE / Immigration and Customs Enforcement: federal agency in charge of investigating   violations of immigration laws


  1. INA: Immigration and Nationality Act created in 1952, consistING of basic framework of US Immigration law


  1. IR / Immediate Relative: Spouses of citizens, children (under 21 years of age and unmarried) of citizens, and parents of citizens 21 years of age or older


  1. IV: Immigration visa


  1. Labor Certification: An employer needs to file labor certificate from DOL to get permission to employ a foreign national. Based on information filed by the employer with DOL concerning the specific requirements for the position in question and that the employer cannot find a qualified person in the US to fill the position, the DOL issues a labor certification that the alien will not displace US workers or affect the wages or working conditions of US workers.


  1. LPR: Legal Permanent Resident, also known as Green Card Holder


  1. N-400: Application for Naturalization


  1. Naturalization: The process by which US citizenship is granted to a foreign citizen after meeting certain requirements as prescribed in INA


  1. NIV: Nonimmigrant Visa


  1. PPT: Passport


  1. Priority Date: The date when an individual applies for an immigrant visa petition. They must wait their turn “in line” for their petition to be reviewed.


  1. RFE: Request for Evidence


  1. TPS / Temporary Protected Status: individuals who arrive in the US on a temporary basis as a result of dangerous conditions in their country


  1. USCIS / US Citizenship and Immigration Service: The agency of Department of Homeland Security that handles applications for visas, green card and naturalization

TransLegal is available to help corporations and individuals navigate the intricacies of the US immigration system. Call us with your questions.


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