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USCIS Form I-485 - Adjustment of Status

The USCIS Form I-485 will allow you to adjust your status and become a Permanent Resident of the United States. We give you an overview of the form, the required documents, the eligibility criteria, the fees, and the processing times.

What is Form I-485?

Form I-485, also known as the Adjustment of Status form or Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, marks the last stage of a Green Card application. After concluding the Form I-485 process, an applicant will receive the status of lawful permanent US resident. In other words, he or she will become a Green Card holder.

Once your Green Card application is approved by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), you are allowed to live and work in America indefinitely. After about 5 years, it is also possible to become a naturalized US citizen.

Who needs to file Form I-485?

You are eligible to file Form I-485 if you belong to one of the following categories:

  • You may file Form I-485 if your immigrant petition (Form I-130) has been approved and a visa number is available for you.
  • Spouses or children of applicants who file Form I-485 may file Form I-485 at the same time as the applicant in question or after approval if they are already in the US.
  • Fiancés of US citizens are able to file if they enter the US as K-1 fiancé and marry within 90 days. The same applies to K-2 children who enter the US with them.
  • Asylum seekers, as well as spouses or children of refugees, can file Form I-485 after having been present in the US for one year.
  • Native Cuban citizens and their spouses or unmarried children may file for lawful residency via Form I-485 if they were admitted or paroled into the United States (allowed to enter the US without a visa or for humanitarian reasons) after January 1st, 1959. Applicants must have been present in the US for at least one year.
  • Individuals who have been living in the United States since before January 1st, 1972.

Which documents are required to file Form I-485?

When filing Form I-485, you also need to submit the following documents:

  • a copy of your government-issued identity card
  • a copy of your birth certificate or birth record
  • two photos (Note: The photos must be identical and of color, have a white background, be printed on thin, glossy paper, and be taken within 30 days of your application. Furthermore, they must show a full face without any headwear unless it is required by your religious order.) Form G-325A, Biographic Information Sheet (If you are between 14 and 79 years of age.)

Depending on your answers in the Form I-485 application, you may also be required to submit:

  • supporting forms (I-300, I-360, I-130, I-751, I-90, I-864, I-485, etc.)
  • documentation of the immigrant category
  • confirmation of job offer
  • copy(ies) of Passport Page(s) with non-immigrant visas (received from a Consulate or Embassy outside of the US within the past year)
  • crime history records
  • police clearances
  • copy(ies) of evidence showing continuous residence in the US since before January 1st, 1972


When submitting documents in a language other than English, you must also include an English translation as well as a certification from the translator.

If you are between 14 and 79 years of age, the USCIS will schedule a biometrics appointment for you, during which your fingerprints will be taken. This appointment is obligatory.

How to file Form I-485?

Essentially, Form I-485 gathers basic information about the applicant and verifies the admissibility of the application. It consists of 14 parts in total.

Before you start: general advice

First of all, here is some general advice for filling out the form:

  • If a question or field doesn’t apply to you (p.ex. if you don’t have a middle name), it’s best to enter “None” or “N/A.” Otherwise, you may risk that the USCIS will return the form to you.
  • If you need additional space to answer a question, use Part 14 at the end of the form. You can also copy the page if you need an extra one, but mark it with your name and Alien Registration number (if any).

The different steps of Form I-485

The 20-page long Form I-845 consists of 14 sections in total, which include:

  • Part 1: Personal information
  • Part 2: Application type or filing category
  • Part 3: More information about you
  • Part 4: Information about your parents
  • Part 5: Marital history
  • Part 6: Information about your children
  • Part 7: Biographic information
  • Part 8: General Eligibility and Inadmissibility Grounds
  • Part 9: Accommodations for Individuals With Disabilities and/or Impairments
  • Part 10: Applicant's Statement, Contact Information, Declaration, Certification, and Signature
  • Part 11: Interpreter’s Contact Information, Certification, and Signature
  • Part 12: Contact Information, Declaration, and Signature
  • Part 13: Signature (Attention: This space is to be left blank until your interview appointment with the USCIS officer. You will sign the form on-site.)
  • Part 14: Additional Information


The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that effective December 23rd, 2022, a new version of Form I-485 will be required for all applications. According to this, an applicant must provide the following additional information under certain circumstances:

  • Household size
  • Annual household income
  • Total value of household assets
  • Total value of household liabilities
  • Highest level of education or schooling completed
  • Listing of job-related skills, certifications, licenses, educational certificates

How much does Form I-485 cost?

A fee of $ 1,440 must be paid when filing the Form I-485. A reduced fee of $ 950 is required for children who are 13 years of age or younger at the time of application.

In addition, applicants between the ages of 14 and 78 must pay a fee of $ 30 for the "Biometrics" appointment.

Refugees under section 209(a) of the INA (Immigration and Nationality Act) are exempted from the fee.


The fee has to be paid by check or money order. Furthermore, the money needs to be transferred from a bank or other financial institution in the US and must be paid in US dollars. It is payable to the US Department of Homeland Security (no abbreviation of the name of the authority accepted).

How long is the processing time for Form I-485?

After submitting Form I-485 to the US authorities, you will most likely have to expect the following processing times:

  • 2 - 3 weeks after submitting Form I-485, you will receive a letter from the USCIS with your Case Number. With this number, you will be able to check when your biometrics appointment and your interview at the US Consulate or Embassy will take place.
  • 3 - 5 weeks after submitting Form I-485, the US authorities will send you a letter informing you about the date and location of your biometrics appointment.
  • 5 - 8 weeks after submitting Form I-485, your biometrics appointment will take place. The appointment should not exceed 30 minutes, during which your fingerprints, signature, and photos will be taken.
  • 12 - 16 weeks after submitting Form I-485, you will receive your EAD card. It legally allows you to work in the US while your application is pending.
  • 4 - 10 months after submitting Form I-485, you will receive a letter from USCIS informing you where and when you will need to show up for your Green Card interview.
  • 6 - 12 months after submitting Form I-485, your interview with an immigration officer will take place at the US Consulate or Embassy. The interview will take about 30 minutes. Don’t forget to bring a copy of your application, your passport, and all other documents required for your specific case.
  • 8 - 14 months after submitting Form I-485, you will receive your Green Card.

Welcome to America – you’re now a Lawful Permanent Resident, and your new life in the United States is about to start!

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