On April 26, 2016, USCIS held a stakeholder teleconference on the revised Forms I-485 (Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status) and I-485 Supplement A (which should be filed as a supplement by applicants seeking to adjust status under the provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act, section 245(i)). On March 31, 2016, USCIS published proposed revisions to the forms, comments for which are due by May 31, 2016.
During the stakeholders’ call, USCIS representatives from the Office of Policy and Strategy spoke on the goals of the proposed revisions, which primarily aim to help make the forms more user-friendly to applicants. The new I-485 form, while longer than the current version, is meant to help applicants navigate the many different underlying bases for filing and determine the appropriate one. It is also designed to help them understand the required evidence and documentation they should submit to show eligibility for that particular basis. Importantly, the new Form I-485 incorporates the questions currently asked on the Form G-325A, making the latter no longer necessary for inclusion in adjustment of status applications. (Note, however, that Form G-325A will still be required for other applications until revisions to those application forms occur.) Additionally, Form I-485 will now be consistent with other USCIS forms in regards to requesting interpreter information and other items. Form I-485A’s proposed revisions also include further instructions on who is qualified to apply under INA §245(i) and the evidence required to demonstrate eligibility.
USCIS speakers took some comments and questions on the call, but overall encouraged stakeholders to send an email to [email protected] with more detailed questions or suggestions. Some issues that arose included the new Form I-485’s list of grounds of inadmissibility and modified questions about criminal history. Regarding the Forms’ public charge questions, speakers advised stakeholders to review USCIS’ list of benefits that do not constitute inadmissibility based on likelihood of becoming a public charge, and confirmed that the proposed Form does not change eligibility grounds in connection with this issue.
Stakeholders may make comments (which must include the OMB Control Number 1615-0023 in the subject box, the agency name, and the Docket ID USCIS 2009-0020) on the proposed revisions via mail, email ([email protected]), or online via the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal Website. Following the comment period’s close on May 31, USCIS will re-submit draft versions to the Federal Register for an additional comment period and try to address all suggestions before publishing the final version.