New Year’s is just around the corner. Have you thought about your New Year’s resolutions yet?
Everyone always has unique resolutions, so you should, too. But if you are a legal permanent resident, foreign national, or immigrant of another status, then these resolutions that we have listed here might just be what you have been meaning to do in order to achieve your immigration goals.
For your New Year’s immigration resolutions, you should:
- Check your visa status and expiry: Obtaining an immigration visa is an exciting moment that will probably stay with you for years and years. The trouble is that your visa probably will not last as long as the memory of getting it first approved. Each year, far too many temporary visa holders lose track of how much time remains on their visas and end up scrambling to file for renewal with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Do not let yourself get caught in the same hasty mess. Make a New Year’s resolution to check your visa status and expiration date in January.
- Know your employment future: For foreign nationals who are in the United States for employment reasons, the futures of their careers are intersected with their future in the country. If you are in the same situation, the New Year is a good time to examine your career path and the status of your employment visa. Make certain that you will keep working for your sponsor employer, on related projects, and so forth so that there won’t be any immigration surprises next year due to an employment mishap.
- Follow-up on any pending petitions: USCIS can take a long time to return inquiries, review applications, send notices, and issue final decisions on a case. If you have filed any immigration petitions or applications with USCIS, like a marriage petition or an immigration extension application, and have not heard back from them yet, then you might want to take the time to follow-up with the correct office. At the least, you will probably feel better knowing you have at least done what you can on your end of the matter.
- Study if trying to naturalize: If your immigration goal next year is to become a naturalized citizen by passing the U.S. civics test, then your top New Year’s resolution should be to study. It would be a terrible shame if a few questions on an exam stood between you and your immigration goal, so do your best to collect and retain knowledge now. For study hints and a practice exam, you can click here to visit the official USCIS website. This is especially important now since USCIS announced new additional questions and requirements just within the last month on the naturalization exam.
- Call an attorney: Are you losing sleep due to questions about your immigration status or petition? Stop letting the unknown answers bother you. Make a New Year’s resolution to get the answers you need by contacting a local immigration attorney who can manage your case and protect your rights as an immigrant, either documented or undocumented.