Atlanta Immigration Attorneys

Religious Visa ——-

Ministers and non-ministers in religious vocations and occupations may immigrate to or adjust status in the U.S. for the purpose of performing religious work in a full-time compensated position.

The R-1 visa classification allows you to come to the United States temporarily to be employed by a nonprofit religious organization in the United States to work solely as a minister, in a religious vocation, or in a religious occupation.

The special immigrant religious worker category is one of several employment-based fourth-preference (EB-4) visa classifications.

Eligibility Criteria For Religious Visa

To be eligible in the religious worker category, you must:

    Have been a member of a bona fide non-profit religious denomination for at least two years prior to filing Form I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant

    Have been working continuously for the past two years immediately prior to filing the immigrant petition:

    1. As a religious minister in a religious vocation either professional or non-professional capacity, or
    2. In a religious occupation either professional or nonprofessional capacity

    Seek to enter the United States solely to carry out such religious occupation of the employer’s denomination

    Application Process

    To apply for a green card while in the United States, you must file Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status.

    If filing Form I-485, you’ll need the following supporting evidence:

    Form I-485;

    Copy of Form I-797, approval notice for I-360, Petition for Amerasian Widow(er), or Special Immigrant;

    Passport photos, 2″x2″ full-face color frontal view on a white or off-white background (although USCIS now uses your photos taken during fingerprint appointment);

    Form I-485A, Supplement A, if filed under 245(i);

    Form I-693, Medical Examination, signed and sealed by a designated physician;

    Birth certificate or other records of your birth;

    Copies of all passport pages with non-immigrant visas;

    Arrest and criminal history;

    Employment verification letter from petitioner on religious entity’s letterhead, stating your salary and position and that the job is still available;

    Photocopy of the applicant’s current passport and previously issued passports, including biographic/photo pages, current and expired visas, and pages with relevant entry or departure stamps;

    Photocopy of Form I-797 approval notices for all extensions and changes of status; and

    Photocopy of the Form I-20 or IAP 66 school records (front and back, including all school annotations).

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