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September 2014 Archives

Can I help a relative obtain permanent residency status?

The United States has developed a series of family immigration laws and processes that allow permanent residents to help an overseas relative become permanent U.S. residents. One can petition on behalf of a spouse or unmarried children, regardless of the children's age. If the resident is a U.S. citizen, married children can be sponsored as well.

Alternatives for achieving naturalized citizenship

Some people who are now living in Florida and who have emigrated from a foreign country may be interested in obtaining United States citizenship through naturalization. Like all countries, the U.S. has its rules, procedures and forms that are required in order to progress through visa status to citizenship.

DHS visa program loses track of foreign students

A security gap has led the Department of Homeland Security to losing track of more than 6,000 foreigners with expired student visas. As the number of foreign students coming to Florida and the rest of the United States has rapidly increased, immigration offices have struggled to keep pace with the demand. Over 1 million students come to the United States per year with as many as 58,000 overstaying their visas.

The process of becoming a U.S. citizen

Florida residents may be interested to learn how individuals qualify for U.S. citizenship and how the process of becoming a citizen works. To begin, some people are granted U.S. citizenship automatically. These people were either born in the United States or born in a foreign country to at least one parent who is already a U.S. citizen.

Home ownership for undocumented residents

Undocumented Florida residents often share the American dream of home ownership but may find it difficult to imagine being able to qualify for a mortgage. While some take questionable or difficult approaches to buying a home, the use of Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers is becoming a viable alternative. Prior to the crash of the housing and mortgage markets between 2007 and 2009, the practice of issuing mortgage loans using ITINs instead of Social Security numbers was becoming more predominant. A 2003 rule established by the Treasury Department allowed bank accounts to be established with ITINs, and many small community banks and credit unions were early participants in using this identification for mortgage eligibility.

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