When it comes to US immigration, knowledge—the right kind—is key. Knowing ahead of time what you need, when you need it, where to go, who to deal with and other basic information are crucial for a successful application.
Here’s a rundown of some basic things to remember when applying for US immigration.
- Make duplicate copies. Always make duplicate copies of whatever documents you submit to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). If you send anything via mail, always ask for a return receipt.
- Read the fine print. Even the most minor infractions, intentional or otherwise, can cause you to lose your shot at US immigration. One way to avoid this is to always read the fine print. The fine print is there for a reason—so you can follow specific rules and instructions pertaining to your application.
- Be prepared for delays. Because of the volume of applications that USCIS has to process, delays are inevitable. If you are already a green card holder, apply for renewal early on so you have enough time to be delayed. Once your green card or immigration visa expires, you may be actually arrested or deported by authorities under technical grounds even if you really are just waiting for renewal.
- Always be on time. Simply put, do not be late for appointments. You’ll have plenty of those all throughout the immigration process—US embassy, immigration court and USCIS, to name a few. As mentioned in item number 4, immigration processes are prone to delays as it is so do everything you can to not worsen it by always being prompt.
- Work only with certified professionals. Along the way, you’ll encounter a lot of people who are “trying to help.” Unfortunately, not all those who are offering to help really do mean well. As such, it is important to work only with certified professionals. Ask for referrals and always do your research to make sure you do not become a victim of immigration scammers.
Working with professionals applies even to the selection of your translation services provider. Documents required for immigration must always come from certified sources, including your translated documents. According to The Spanish Group Operations Manager Salvador Ordorica, minor translation errors can significantly delay the entire immigration process. The Spanish Group is a California-based provider of professional Spanish document translation such as Mexican birth certificate translations and USCIS certified translations.
He added, “Like we always tell our clients, a person who knows how to speak the language does not automatically make a professional translator. When it comes to immigration documents, it is always advisable to work with professionals because we have the experience necessary to provide immigration-specific support and services.”
Lorenzo Saavedra is a San Francisco-based Colombian writer. He has a degree in Journalism and Economics from the University of Miami where he graduated with Latin honors. He is fluent in Spanish, English, Italian, and also speaks “some Arabic.”
During his time in the university, he wrote about Cuban-American population and relations, and the incorporation of Cuban-Americans into mainstream American society.
Lorenzo juggles his time between working as a freelance writer and travelling which is also a source of inspiration for many of his works. His favorite topics are politics and social issues, literary and film criticism, and business.
Lorenzo enjoys going to the beach and learning about new languages.