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Can I appeal my citizenship ruling?

The process of filing for permanent residency and/or petitioning for an adjustment of status can be lengthy and rather involved in many cases. In fact, it is not unheard of for green card applications to be denied. That does not necessarily mean, however, that an immigration decision is final. If your immigration petition is denied, it is important to understand your rights and options for having your case reevaluated.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, a branch of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, explains that there are two primary options for having your immigration case reconsidered. The first option is to appeal your immigration decision. The second option that you may have is to file a motion to have your case reopened and/or reconsidered.

An appeals case involves having a higher authority review your immigration ruling. An appeal can be filed with the USCIS Administrative Appeals Office or the Board of Immigration Appeals. In the event that you file your appeals petition with the AAO, the immigration officer who made the original ruling in your case will review the records again to determine whether or not there is evidence to warrant reconsidering his or her decision. Your case can then be submitted to the AAO or BIA in instances where the officer in question does not find a reason to reevaluate your application.

Filing a motion to have your case reopened also revolves around requesting that the agent who made the original immigration decision review his or her ruling. Your motion must be based on factual information and revolve around the presence of evidence to support your claims. For instance, you may file a motion for reconsideration in instances where the request for evidence in your case was sent to the wrong address or you can illustrate that the decision in your case is based on information that you can disprove. Keep in mind, however, that other factors can be taken into consideration when determining whether or not your immigration case is eligible for reconsideration. This information is only intended to be educational in nature.

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